A Place Called Blessing by John Trent and Annette Smith

A Place Called Blessing

“I was a long way from being brilliantly lit, but I was beginning to feel a small glimmer of something that might turn out to be light.”

His whole life has been a story of hurt and rejection. Is one family’s love enough to turn it all around?

Josh lost his parents in a drunk-driving accident and lost track of his two brothers after a tragic fire. By age eighteen, he is an angry young man who only wants a job, an apartment, and to be left alone. Instead, he meets Mike and Anna, an unusual son-and-mother team who draw him into their lives. For the first time, Josh receives unconditional love and something every human being craves, the gift of “the blessing.” But tragedy strikes again, and a shocking secret is revealed. Can Josh hang on to what he’s learned about blessings, curses, and family?

The life-changing message of the relational classic, “The Blessing”–now in compelling story form. Complete with a reader’s guide to help you identify and apply the five elements of the biblical blessing to your own life and relationships.

Visit http://www.TheBlessing.com for more information and an opportunity to join The Blessing Challenge, one million people choosing to change the life of one child–their child!

Personal Thoughts:

A Places Called Blessing is a fictional story that easily tug my heart. It actually feel more real than a fictional work as the story can really happen to anyone.

The story begins with Josh as a young boy with his two brothers almost living on their own because they are often neglected by their parents. When their parents died into a car accident, Josh and his brothers are put into foster care system. They move from one home to another usually part from each others until he was six, where a wife and husband can finally accommodate all three of them. For the first time, Josh is finally happy and contended because he has his brothers once again and a place to call home, but his happiness doesn’t last long. A fire accident happens one afternoon because of his undoing which cost a life of a young friend, and a possible happy life together with his brothers. Immediately after tragedy, Josh and his brothers are sent back to foster care until his two brother finally adopted, leaving him alone, angry, and distrustful.

The author weaved a raw and moving story in a simple yet engrossing way that will connect readers hearts to the main character, Josh. As Josh struggles in dealing with his past failures, and painful memories you will experience every ounce of hatred and pain of this young boy. You will feel sorry for him and maybe at one point just want to hug him real and tell him that it isn’t his fault and that he needs to forgive himself and move on. It’s so easy to relate to Josh and understand where he is coming from even if you don’t actually experience any of his past experiences. The author created him as real as possible that you may got a hard time believing that what you are reading is a fictional story instead of a chronicle of a life of real young man named Josh.

“When you have gone without something all of your life, then you get it in abundance, it can feel like too much. Maybe like sitting down to a huge meal after not having to eat for a couple of days.
Sure, it’s good, and it fills you up.
But it can make you hurt too.”

Mike and Anna are the epitome of love and forgiveness. I’m sure if there are more people like them, this world will be a better place, too bad they are just fictional characters. These mother and son is the real “blessing” not just to Josh but also to readers. If not for them, Josh maybe still living a life full of regrets and self-hate, and readers won’t rediscover the fact that there still people out there who are willing to put others above self.

The revelation near the end shocks me, not because I didn’t see it coming but because it is painfully heart wrenching and heartwarming at the same time. Sometimes it is hard to understand how someone who had all the rights to hate choose to care and forgive wholeheartedly. If I knew from the start the real connection between Josh, Mike and Anna, I might think that Anna is too good to be true. With Mike case, I may believe it since he was young when the accident happens but with Anna, who lost more than anyone, that is just too much for me. But since I am fully acquainted to Anna and Mike’s before the revelation it is easy to understand Anna and Mike motivation. I can’t imagine if I am in Anna’s situation, I’m not sure if I can do what she did for Josh. Though I believe that people like her still exist I can’t consider myself as one of them. I wish I can and hopefully I encounter more selfless person like Anna not just in fiction but also in real world.

A Placed Called Blessing is a story that I can say a real blessing to its readers. It is a beautiful story that will open your heart and mind into the real value of forgiveness, love and acceptance. It is about learning to forgive ourselves and others, letting go of past mistakes and accepting love. This book is truly inspiring and uplifting which at the very least will let you think and compare your own life blessings. It can also restore your faith to humanity, and reminds you that your past doesn’t define who you really are. Because everything is a choice – a choice to let go, to forgive and to love. To those who are losing hope and faith or just want to rediscover the beauty of love and forgiveness this book is for you.

* This review is based on a copy I received courtesy of the publisher, Thomas Nelson via BookSneeze.com in exchange of honest review.