I finished this book a few days ago and definitely recommend it. It takes place in Iran in the 70s, prior to the Iranian Revolution and chronicles the life of a teenage Iranian boy, and his complicated love for the girl next door.
This is not the first book I've read that takes place in that neck of the woods (I've actually read many!), but it happened to be timely given the recent news from the Middle East. I love reading books that take place in oppressive nations or time periods. I know that may sound strange, but the stories help to humanize the atrocities and build into me a greater worldly prayer life. I believe that the oppression of people is due to people in authority believing lies and worshiping created things as opposed to the Creator. Reading even fictional accounts of their experiences spurs:
- Deeper prayers for the Lord to loosen the chains of injustice and save the lost
- A thankful heart that I am free
- Conviction that I too often waste that freedom and choose created things over the Creator
- A desire to serve, love, and pour myself into others for the sake of changing live in Christ
Yes, it probably sounds like I'm crazy, but these are the responses that spin out of my novel reading. Maybe I'm being too extreme, but I don't think so.
And speaking of worldly injustices, I learned on Sunday night that I will be co-leading the children's ministry in Haiti with my friend (and fellow community group member), Leanne. I could not be more excited. I have been greatly burdened by the magnitude of orphans in the small country of Haiti and feel unbelievably blessed to get to love on and encourage them. And also the children with families. It was so fun in Brazil to see how children's ministry seemed to be a magnet for adults as well, and I pray that this trend will continue in Haiti. I can't wait to get over there in two short months!!
That's all for now, folks.