A Merry Little Christmas

Title:  A Merry Little Christmas
Author:  Anita Higman                                                                                                                    
Pages:  256
Year:  2012
Publisher:  Summerside
     At first glance, this story seemed like I was walking into a movie that had already begun.  It took a couple of pages before getting hooked.  How many Christmas stories have you read or listened to?  What is your favorite Christmas movie?  I can tell you that I have read many books, but very few Christmas themed novels.  My favorite movie is with Jimmy Stewart, It’s a Wonderful Life.  The angel’s name in that work of fiction on screen is Clarence, which also happened to be my father-in-law’s name.
     Do you find yourself reminiscing a little bit during the holidays?  Do you make time to remember all that the Lord has done for you and how He has blessed you?  I know that some people keep themselves very busy during this time of year because it can be filled with pain so what better way to avoid it?  For others, Christmas is another day off work, shopping very early in the mornings or maybe even decorating.
     The author places her characters in a small town in Oklahoma on a farm that is owned and managed by a 30-something woman who goes by the name of Frannie.  Frannie loves her farm and has been running it since she lost both parents in an accident.  As the holidays draw near Frannie believes that it will be another season she will spend all alone.  The year of the story begins in 1961, when Civil Rights are beginning to take center stage all over America.
     Charlie is the oldest son of a wealthy widower who is expected to take over the business his father began years ago.  When he reads an advertisement for a farm for sale, he believes this time he can do it without being a failure.  No matter what he is doing on the farm, he is there for one purpose and only time will tell if it comes to fruition.
     Through God-ordained events, the past of both Frannie’s family and Charlie’s comes to light, uncovering the storm that changed Frannie since she was a young woman, and the hurt as well as fear God brings out from deep within her heart to bring healing.  Then there is Charlie who had grown up without a mother and a very domineering father, and he goes through a time when he will either lean on the Lord or not.  Willie, who is Charlie’s younger brother, has gone through some transformation as well, being able to see why he struggles with depression.  He finds freedom in the way all of us can.  Though Willie will have to deal with his depression for years to come, with the Lord he has identified the reason he struggles.  Now, he too must decide to go into the future with the strength of God or be forever in bondage.

     Well, that isn’t all that is in the story.  In fact, there is a murder that is solved from the past.  Characters have to choose to love people for who they are the color of their skin or even their status in life.  The author does a wonderful job encouraging readers to take all of who they are to the Lord whether it is their fears, pain, past, hopes, dreams, futures, everything and anything.  We need to surrender completely to the Lord.  There is hope and encouragement when we walk with others as they learn to wrestle not with flesh and blood, but the real enemy the devil.  Looking at others and seeing them as God sees them isn’t always easy, but it is always a choice.  Great novel!
My rating is 5 stars.
Note:  I received a complimentary copy for an honest review of this book.  The opinions shared in this review are solely my responsibility.  Other reviews can be read at http://seekingwithallyurheart.blogspot.com/ .  Also follow me on Twitter @lcjohnson1988, FaceBook at https://www.facebook.com/lisa.johnson.75457

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