Tuesday, August 2, 2011

When in Rome vicariously...

It is taking every fiber of my being to blog right now. Why?

Are you sick?


Are you mad at your blog?

No. That was so last month.

Do you have The Blingers? (debilitating disease affecting the fingers and linked to too much blogging)

No, just fingerpad callouses.

Then what is it?

Drumroll, please....

It's this book series: The Mark of the Lion by Francine Rivers.
Have you read any of these? How have I just discovered these? All the girls in my book club had read them and all loved them. So, Ashley loaned me the first two in the series.
I am addicted. This story has absolutely captivated me.
First of all, the setting is something I have never really read about in any other book. It's set in Rome shortly after Jesus' death and resurrection. It follows the lives of a young Jewish slave named Hadassah, a Germanian gladiator named Atretes and the wealthy and influential Roman family, the Valerians. It's about mistakes, forgiveness, greed, violence, cultural tension, family and it's about love - not just romantic love, but Christ's love. It's a story you have to finish.
I will tell you that at the end of the first book I was lying in bed on Sunday, my eyes glued to the final pages while Joey was sleeping. I was so impacted by the end of story that I started crying hard enough to wake Joey up from his blissful sleep. He thought I was having some sort of mental break down. (I guess he's never watched The Notebook with me)
While comforting his seemingly unstable wife, he said, baby it's just a book. These aren't real people.
But I think that might be why the story has had such an impact on me. People like this were real. Stories like this were lived out by Christians on a daily basis and in many areas, still are.
With tears still in my eyes, I picked up the second book from my nightstand. I had to know what happened next.
So, while I love blogging with you, I am going to be a little bit selfish and bid you goodnight. I've got to finish the rest of the story. What happens to Hadassah, Marcus, Julia and Atretes? If you know, shh...don't tell me yet.