Book Review – Redeeming Love


I had to reread this book. I read this the first time right after I became a Christian. I loved it. In fact, I loved it so much that for the next ten years anytime someone asked for a book recommendation, I demanded that they read this. I loved it so much that anytime somebody told me they were reading it or they had just finished reading it, I would squeal like a 7 year old girl and clap my hands together in glee. In short, this book made me believe that Christian fiction could be good. Unfortunately, I have suffered through a lot of Christian fiction since then that was pretty awful. I’m just not a fan of Amish love stories and that is about 75% of today’s Christian fiction.

Summer had just begun. The kids were driving me nuts. I spied Redeeming Love on my dusty bookshelf and dove back in. The surprising thing was that I remembered so little of the book. I hate that. I remembered the basic plot and theme but the details had completely abandoned my brain.

Here’s the basic story. Angel is a child prostitute who grows up and moves West. Michael Hosea is a farmer. God tells Michael to take Angel as his wife. He does. Angel is pretty screwed up (as you would expect) and she just cannot receive love. She keeps running away. Michael keeps going after her.

When I read this the first time, I understood a few things. I had a rudimentary knowledge of the book of Hosea from the Old Testament. I knew that Michael represented God and that Angel represented all of us. But I wasn’t spiritually mature enough to let the impact of this story tear me to shreds.

To be redeemed…

We, as Christians, throw that phrase around all the time. We sing about it. We write about it. But I don’t know if we really accept it. Because to accept it fully we would have to try, somehow, to comprehend the totality of God’s love for us. We view love as a conditional agreement. God just doesn’t.

Reading this book gives you a glimpse of what God’s love for us looks like. It opens your heart to the possibility that you are worthy of love no matter how often and egregiously you have screwed up. You will be different after you read it. You might also sob loudly so maybe try not to read it at the community pool. People will look at you funny. Trust me on this one.

Comments

  1. When you say that Michael represented God and Angel represented us, I’m a little confused. I thought God actually did tell the prophet Hosea to marry a prostitute. Did I get that wrong?

  2. I actually may have made this more confusing than it should be. In the book of Hosea, God does tell the prophet to marry a prostitute. But He does so to create an example of His (God’s) relationship with Israel. Israel had ‘played the harlot’ by worshipping idols. But God would not stop loving her (Israel). And just as Hosea kept going to get his prostitute wife when she left him, God keeps coming after His beloved, Israel.

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