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  • The Reformed Pastor – Richard Baxter

    “We must carry on our work with patience. We must bear with many abuses and injuries from those to whom we seek to do good. When we have studied for them, and prayed for them, and exhorted them, and beseeched them with all earnestness and condescension, and given them what we are able, and tended them as if they had been our children, we must look that many of them will requite us with scorn and hatred and contempt, and account us their enemies, because we ‘tell them the truth.’ Now, we must endure all this patiently, and we must unweariedly hold on in doing good, ‘in meekness instructing those that oppose themselves, if God, peradventure, will give them repentance to the acknowledging of the truth.’ We have to deal with distracted men who will fly in the face of their physician, but we must not, therefore, neglect their cure. He is unworthy to be a physician, who will be driven away from a frenetic patient by foul words. Yet, alas, when sinners reproach and slander us for our love, and are more ready to spit in our faces, than to thank us for our advice, what heart-risings will there be, and how will the remnants of old Adam (pride and passion) struggle against the meekness and patience of the new man! And how sadly do many ministers come off under such trials!”
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Sisters of the Quilt by Cindy Woodsmall

Product DetailsSisters of the Quilt by Cindy Woodsmall is a three book series about a young girl, Hannah Lapp, who lives with her family in an Old Order Amish community. At age 17 she experienced a brutality that left her bewildered, rejected and unsure of her future. The first book, When the Heart Cries, weaves a heart wrenching story about how in just one day she went from an engaged, innocent little farm girl, to a dejected, and lost adult dealing with insecurities, disappointment and disloyalty. We learn of life in the Old Order Amish and the harsh realities that accompany such a strict, controlled community. Though Hannah’s community was tight knit, we begin to see the flaws in such a belief system when tragedy strikes Hannah on her way walking home alone.

In book two, When the Morning Comes, Hannah leaves her Amish faith for the outside world, leaving her family to pick up the pieces after their selfish rejection of Hannah and the truth of what had happened to their little girl. The Englisher world both amazes and frightens Hannah, but with determination and courage she embarks on a new life while trying to forget her old one. As she tries to forget the past, God continues to speak to her through a long lost family member and her new English friends, even though her heart had decicded to turn against all she knew of faith and her God. The story fluctuates between the life her family and friends continue to lead in the Old Order Amish and her life out in the world Hannah had been taught to fear and shun. Though Hannah seems to have adjusted well in her new life, the old one continued to call to her, asking her to come home. The third book, When the Soul Mends, collides Hannah’s two worlds through events that demand forgiveness and acceptance on both sides.

The first and third were very good reads with the second being a bit dry, which is typical of many book series. Yet I found it to be very entertaining and educational in regard to the lifestyle and beliefs of the Plain life. It brings to mind how situations and relationships can be manipulated by misconceptions, misunderstandings and outright lies. The end was heartwarming as we read how families and communities can see God and His loving kindness as they work through personal tragedy and the healing that comes through time effort.

Disclaimer: I did receive a free copy of the Sister’s of the Quilt Book from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishers for review purposes only. All thoughts and opinions in this post are my own.

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