This book provides a very interesting and nuanced story about how a series of small decisions add up to huge consequences and how grace and forgiveness can move people out of their pits and into renewed places of growth. Really well done, a great read.
In old Jewish times, the shofar was sounded for people to assemble so they could confess and repent. In And the Shofar Blew, author Francine Rivers correlates the instrument of the Day of Atonement and Jubilee to one man coming to terms with his own sin of blind ambition.
With over four hundred and forty pages, this softbound book has a photograph of sunlight streaming in church windows onto pews on the front cover. With no profanity and one inexplicit sexual scene, the story is targeted toward mature female adults, especially Christian women or pastorsâ€™ wives that could relate to the topic of personal, family and marital problems within church leadership. After the narrative that includes italicization for charactersâ€™ thoughts, included are an author biography, discussion questions and promotions of other written works.
In this soul-searching tome, Eunice Hudson tries so hard to be an upright, loving, gracious and wonderful pastorâ€™s wife and mother. When her husband Paul is called to replace an ill minister of a small, stagnant church, Eunice must gather all her strength, love and compassion moving from Illinois to Centerville, California to honor her husbandâ€™s wishes and demands.
Praying for not only spiritual but church growth, Paul gets rapidly caught up in serving both man and himself instead of the Lord, leading to church rifts, broken friendships, and unfortunately, turning away from Biblical doctrine. Constantly competing and trying to get approval from his own fatherâ€™s success pastoring a mega-church, Paul obsessively plans building expansions and projects to promote his own self-worth while ignoring and forgetting his wife and their young impressionable son, Tim.
Friendships with the wise but dejected elder, Samuel, and his wife, Abby, along with Paulâ€™s mother who has witnessed the same sorrow, shame and solitude in her own marriage, Eunice tries to focus on trusting in God for patience and humility through one crisis after another.
When Paulâ€™s perceivably perfect life spins out of control through focusing on church growth and his own needs instead of the spiritual condition of his family, position and the flock, Eunice and he are forced to see each other as they really are.
Written with compassion about true everyday problems involving Christian ministry, the story brings to light the backdrop behind concentrating on ourselves instead of searching and relying on God to accomplish His church without walls. Although the shofar is not the focal point of the story, it is a reminder we are called by Christ to honor Him, not ourselves.
This book was furnished by Tyndale for review purposes.
I'm nearing the middle of the book now and things are getting TENSE! It's like listening in on a family conflict! I almost feel like an eavesdropper! In other words; AMAZING book! For some reason, the character of Samuel Mason reminded me of Tom Riley on Adventures in Odyssey. Tragically, he's been all but shut out, and his poor wife, Abby, at this point, must wonder if she's a costume designer to some Opera diva rather than a singing angel in a church production. And, in the midst of all this, the Pastor's long suffering wife is left wondering WHO her husband is 'building the church' for? Even the Lord took ONE day off!