Miracle in a Dry Season    Dangerous Passage

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Healing Waters
by Nancy Rue and Stephen Arterburn

Reviewed by Darcie Gudger

"The characterization is so complete and compelling, it’s hard to believe any reader can close the cover unchanged."

Life is anything but fair to Lucia Coffey. Are broken dreams, a broken body and a broken marriage the best God could give her while Sonia, her pampered, spoiled sister finds fame and fortune as a TV evangelist?

One day Sonia’s perfect life explodes in a fireball of airplane parts. Sonia’s injuries are serious and require in-home nursing. Lucia, a registered nurse, dutifully takes on her sister as a patient. At the same time, psychologist Sullivan Crisp, is summoned to Sonia’s mansion to facilitate her emotional healing. Convinced God will restore her beauty, Sonia waves off all therapeutic interventions. With time on their hands, Sullivan and Lucia chat by the river, each realizing the need for healing in their own hearts.

As life marches on and Lucia spends more time in her sister’s world, she senses something evil hiding within the works of Sonia’s Abundant Life Ministries. Courage and forgiveness are demanded from the beaten-down Lucia when she finds out her sister’s plane crash wasn’t an accident.

Nancy Rue and Stephen Arterburn expose a faith-strangling reality of the Christian life experienced by many, spoken of by few. Our saved-by-grace theology is blotted over by our achievement oriented American culture. Many Christians serve God to the point of exhaustion expecting accolades and prosperity. But when obedience leads to suffering, they feel betrayed by God.

The presence of people who are godly and suffer threatens what a lot of Christians want to believe. Our culture thrives on the performance-reward system with instant gratification.

Jesus never promised following him would be easy. He promised the opposite. He promised rewards in Heaven. Obedience to Christ comes at a cost. Lucia and Sullivan wrestle with the culture/faith conflict in their own unique ways.

The characterization is so complete and compelling, it’s hard to believe any reader can close the cover unchanged. Healing Waters and its predecessor Healing Stones define what I call transformative fiction.

Both books tapped deep into my soul touching wounds I buried because voicing them only brought ridicule and rejection. Realizing the authors knew my pain, pain I couldn’t put into words was like discovering that stream in the dessert.

Despite the fact that Healing Waters is a Women of Faith Novel of the Year, this novel is written for an audience of both men and women. Anyone who’s ever questioned their faith because life seemed to reward the wicked and smash the faithful needs to read Healing Waters and recalibrate their beliefs about God’s character.

Darcie Gudger is a freelance writer currently working on a young adult novel while trying to solve all the mysteries of motherhood with her adopted son, Kyle. In her spare time, she coaches the 2A Colorado State Champion Sheridan High School colorguard, judged equipment for the Rocky Mountain Colorguard Association and sings for the Bear Valley church choir and worship team. An adventure-seeker who lives and writes in the shadow of the Rocky mountains, Darcie loves hiking, camping, cycling, photography and keeping her husband guessing. Visit Darcie online at her blog, Joy in the Litterbox.