Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Of Stillness and Storm by MichelePhoenix

Of Stillness and Storm by Michele Phoenix is by far the most interesting Christian love story I have read in awhile.  It is a love story between a man and his wife.  It reads so true to life I had to recheck to make sure it was fiction which it most certainly is.  The story is told through the eyes of Lauren, the wife, and her life which is told in flashbacks of  growing up and meeting Sam at a Bible school in Austria when both of them were exploring and deepening their Christian faith.  Sam and Lauren both knew that they wanted to find lifelong spouses who were Christian.  Sam knew that God had something important for him to do and wanted to make sure that Lauren also felt the same way and that they both would do anything that God called them to do.  Lauren knew that in addition that she wanted to most of all be a mother.  Both during this time of study in Austria thought and prayed long and hard about marriage to each other and finally both agreed that they loved each other and God and that they were meant for each other.  They married and then came life.

Lauren and Sam both wanted children but they couldn't get pregnant.  After 2 years of trying they investigated getting medical help but Sam was sure that if they spent that kind of money on getting pregnant that they would never be able to go into the mission field. When Lauren got pregnant nearly 7 years after their marriage they both cried they were so happy.  Ryan was a happy child and Lauren and Sam loved him very much.  Sam though knew he was supposed to go into the mission field and started the process of getting all their bills paid and saving for spending time in a foreign land, wherever God sent him.  Lauren was content to stay in the good old USA and care for her family.  The day that Sam came home excited and through down the brochures for Nepal was not the day that Sam expected.  Lauren was concerned for the safety and care of Ryan first and foremost, agreed to keep an open mind but when they told 6 year old Ryan he was from the beginning against it.  Ryan, over the time it took them to get financial backing and prepare for life in the mission field in Nepal, became more and more withdrawn and sullen from the happy carefree child he had been.  Lauren was concerned but every time she voiced her concerns Sam would talk her out of it and kept planning the trip to Nepal.

Nepal was everything that Lauren and Ryan was afraid it was and more.  For Ryan the only good thing about Nepal was that they played soccer and Ryan loved to play soccer and was quite good at it.  Lauren loved the kind and loving people of Nepal but she hated living there. It was dirty and because Sam felt that they should live close to the way that the Nepali people did and so they had no cellphone or most of the time no electricity.  Ryan started an emotional downward spiral emotionally which concerned Lauren but Sam felt it was only teenage acting out.  Lauren was with Ryan daily and grew more and more concerned but Sam who was in the field for weeks at a time kept brushing it off.  Lauren and Sam both believed that the wife should be dutiful to her husband and though sometimes it took some arguing on Sam's part Lauren always eventually caved in to Sam's plans and wishes.  That is until the weekend of the disaster.

I loved this book.  It is a love story like no other but also shows what can happen when 2 people who very much love each other marry and only one of them has the power in a relationship.  These people never fall out of love for each other and this is the story of what happened.  This book can be read by any aged person who can tolerate the emotions of the book.  The ending is a hard read but this is also a book that is difficult to put down so be prepared.  Don't start reading this book in the evening and think is will relax you to sleep unless you are really sleepy and can go to sleep in about 2 pages.

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