therefore I quote: John Grisham

(It’s been a loooong time since I’ve published a “therefore I quote” post, I almost forgot the format…)

I read, therefore I quote: John Grisham.

I don’t read much fiction, but one fiction writer I usually try to keep up with is Grisham. (It must be all these years working with attorneys.) Somehow, I missed reading “The Last Juror” and it’s been a pleasant surprise. How have I been reading Grisham’s work all these years and not realized he is a Christian? Even FirstHusband knew.

I love the way Grisham’s faith is evidenced as he describes the scene in which the main character, a small town newspaper editor named Willie Traynor, has been invited to lunch at the home of a Christian southern black woman:

“I sat across from her and was ready to yank off the lids and dive headfirst into whatever I found when she took both my hands and lowered her head. She began to pray.

It would be a lengthy prayer. She thanked the Lord for everything good, including me, “her new friend.” She prayed for those who were sick and those who might become so. She prayed for rain and sun and health and humility and patience, and though I began to worry about the food getting cold, I was mesmerized by her voice. Her cadence was slow, with thought given to each word. her diction was perfect, every consonant treated equally, every comma and period honored. I had to peek to make sure I wasn’t dreaming. I had never heard such speech from a Southern black, or a Southern white for that matter.

I peeked again. She was talking to her Lord, and her face was perfectly content. For a few seconds, I actually forgot about the food. She squeezed my hands as she petitioned the Almighty with eloquence that came only from years of practice. She quoted Scripture, the King James Version for sure, and it was a bit odd to hear hear use words like “thou” and “thine” and “whither” and “goest.” But she knew precisely what she was doing. In the clutches of this very holy woman, I had never felt closer to God.

I’ve been repeatedly struck by the ease with which Mr. Grisham continuously incorporated his faith into the pages of this book and how succinctly he presented the gospel in a non-threatening and way. The path to Christ is clearly and fully laid out – by an educated, well liked, open-minded character who objectively considers the beliefs and doctrines of multiple factions of the Christian faith. Willie forms opinions about faith, religion, Christians and non-Christians. He agrees and disagrees with some aspects of each and allows himself to question and doubt. It’s been a springboard for my own opinions, questions and doubts and I realize I haven’t censored myself with subconscious self-judgment.

I know I’m late to the party because this book was published in 2004, but I’m praying that the Christians who read this book will be encouraged and strengthened in their faith and that Holy Spirit will use this book to draw non-Christians closer to a saving faith in Christ.

“. . . therefore I quote” If you have a quote to share from something you’ve read recently, feel free to comment and/or include a link to your own “quote” post.

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