Friday, October 05, 2012

Book Review - Susanna's Christmas Wish

Susanna’s  Christmas Wish
By Jerry S. Eicher
Published by  Harvest House, 2012


A short but very sweet novella in which we meet the Amish newly-weds Susanna and Herman Wagler and their families.  Susanna was jilted by Matthew Yoder before she married Herman, and occasional doubts plague her as to whether they each love the other as much as they think and hope they do.  When Matthew unexpectedly reappears in their community, all of Herman’s worst fears appear to be coming true.

An innocent remark about spending Christmas with Susanna’s family sparks an intense disagreement between the young couple, and the reader discovers that Herman’s family follows a very old custom of adhering to the Old Calendar date for Christmas, which means that he expects them to postpone their celebrations  till the 6th of January along with the rest of his family………..

As a good Amish fraa, Susanna is committed to acknowledging her husband’s headship of their family, but struggles to come to terms with feeling she has to abandon her own family’s customs and traditions. This threatens to cause a rift between the young couple, especially as Herman’s domineering and interfering mother appears to dislike Susanna and places pressure on him to conform to their family’s “purer” celebration of the Lord’s birth.  Susanna prays for the grace to fully accept her role as a wife and conform to her husband’s expectations in this situation with a cheerful and loving heart, as well as resisting her old feelings for Matthew.

Will the young couple be able to resolve their differences of opinion and reach a compromise acceptable to all parties? Do they love each other enough to truly forsake all others, including their families, if necessary?

One of the things I particularly like about Jerry Eicher’s writing is his ability to focus in on the things which can make or break a relationship and write about them tenderly, compassionately and honestly and with faith.

 A thoroughly enjoyable read !
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