Saturday, October 8, 2011

THE EDGE OF GRACE by CHRISTA ALLAN

I picked up, The Edge of Grace, while at the ACFW conference this year. Christa won my heart over when she wrote Walking on Broken Glass. I knew then she was going to be one of those stand out authors and a favorite of mine. Her first novel dealt with alcoholism and her newest, well, some would say it faces the gay issue, but for me, it was more of the grace issue.

Whatever the issue we are facing it all comes down to grace. God's grace. That same grace I ask for, I too, should be willing to give to others. With that being said, this wasn't a great read for me. I wanted to love it. I love Christa! As far as talking about grace, she nailed it. Made me look at myself and ask, "Do I really give grace?" There were many pages that just didn't settle well with me. During one part the main character is explaining to her son that love is love. Sometimes girls love girls and sometimes boys love boys. As a Christian, I struggled with this. I would have loved to see the main character give grace, but stand in faith. Easier said than done? I am not so sure. I haven't been faced with this issue.

See, in the book the main character loses her husband at a young age and is now raising her son as a single mom. Life is tough already, but now her brother has called her up and said the words, "I'm gay." Throughout the book we see her love him. We see her question her brother and their relationship. I think it is more a question of, "Who is this person I call my brother? Is he in fact who I thought he was?" Is the issue more about him or her? I think for all of us, it's really about us and how we handle it.

I always taught my children we have the power to show people to Christ or to turn them away. We love the sinner and hate the sin. For me, being gay is another sin we struggle with. It doesn't mean we turn away from one we love, but it doesn't mean we accept the sin in our lives. We love and we allow God to do the rest. We are not to judge. There is no big sin and little sin. Not one that should stand out among all the rest. Sin is sin.

I am just not sure where this book leaves me or if I have even given you a good review. I feel the Christian faith is on issue here more than anything. I had to ask myself, "Yes, I give grace, but to what extent?" Can you be a gay Christian? Well, can you be a gossipy Christian? Sin is sin and for me, I can walk away from this book with a greater understanding of giving grace.

I can tell you I would have liked to see more faith in this book. I can tell you I wish the main character would have shared with her son that being gay is a sin. I feel in this book it was being said that it is acceptable. Sin is never acceptable.

I admire Christa for being transparent and bringing us a book that will question the way we walk in faith and share grace.

You can find this book published by Abingdon Press.

Christa Allan, a true Southern woman who knows any cook worth her gumbo always starts with a roux and who never wears white after Labor Day, weaves stories of unscripted grace with threads of hope, humor, and heart. The mother of five and grandmother of three, Christa teaches high school English. She and her husband, Ken, live in Abita Springs, Louisiana where they play golf, dodge hurricanes, and anticipate retirement. Visit Christa on the web at http://www.christaallan.com/.


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