A True and Amazing Story

The Devil in Pew Number Seven
Author:  Rebecca Nichols Alonzo
Release:  August 2010; 2012
Pages:  289
Publisher: Tyndale


What happened in the Spring of 1978 that would irrevocably change lives?   How was a community so radically changed by these events?  Where was God when all this was happening and why didn’t it stop?  Would those closest to the event follow God with all their heart despite the depth of pain then and still living with now?
“Devil in Pew Number Seven” is a book for people everywhere to read.  Why?  Well, because the world needs to know that in spite of what occurs today, God gives us such a beautiful tomorrow.  It is a testimony of lives altered forever, including those yet born, who must know the truth of what happened and not let the Story end there.  It is testimony of the power of God, God-fearing parents, forgiveness, sacrifice and living with pain.  There is no one else so capable of leading people through the “valley of the shadow of death” than God alone.
While the author doesn’t dress up the truth of the savagery she witnessed, neither does she play down the role of how God continues to work so faithfully in her life.  One cannot imagine what she and so many have experienced; only God knows the depth of each person.  Rebecca loving leads us on a journey of forgiveness and candidly expounds on why she forgives the people who hurt her and others so deeply.  This book is not a novel; it is based on actual events, real people, places and more.  At the end of the book, she exhorts all of us to move on toward living lives that forgive regardless of the length and breadth of suffering.  Rebecca can do so because God has shown her and continues to show her how His forgiveness is a reality.  He died to set all of us free.  To not forgive would place each individual who didn’t forgive in a prison that has no key.
             I could not help but place my life span alongside hers and remember where I was and what life I was living at that time.  It awoke within me the gratefulness of my upbringing as well as a fountain of gratefulness toward the God who saved me.  I pray you read her testimony, including the testimonies of other people and be challenged to live a life of forgiveness every day no matter the cost.

Note: I received a complimentary copy of The Devil in Pew Number Seven from the Tyndale publisher.