Where was God . . . ? (Love’s Sacred Song review and giveaway)

Renee Ann Smith —  March 14, 2012 — 59 Comments

Where was God? . . . When I look back through history, it often seems that in the grand scheme of things, women didn’t matter very much. I can’t imagine a woman of Bible times thinking about her rights, planning a career, or longing for independence. Maybe she would’ve dreamed about the type of man she’d marry or the home she’d have—depending on what station in life she occupied. For some, the only hope of a good life depended on whether or not the master was kind. As those women experienced the disappointments and uncertainties of life, did their hearts ache with the question many cry today—how could you let this happen to me, God?

I pondered this as I read Love’s Sacred Song by Mesu Andrews. This novel tells the story of an innocent shepherdess and how her love changes a king. The main character, Arielah, is the beloved daughter of Jehoshaphat, a leader in Shunem.

Though Jehoshaphat is a godly man, he is not able to control his sons, and they subject Arielah to cruel abuse. No wonder when Jehoshaphat comes up with the plan of giving Arielah to Solomon as a treaty bride to keep peace in the north, she jumps at the chance. Marriage to a handsome king sounds like a dream come true, but things in Solomon’s harem aren’t much better. There, the plots, jealousies, and intrigues launched by the men and women of the royal court, almost destroy Arielah. She is maligned, cheated, used, and beaten. Not exactly what I expected in a love story. Yet against this evil backdrop, Arielah’s life shines like a beacon because of the love and forgiveness she freely shares with all—even her rival wives in the harem!

When he compares his character to that of his young wife, Solomon discovers he has much to live up to. And he constantly falls short. The story shows his inner weakness as he allows his women to cloud his judgment. But time spent with Arielah refreshes him. Their relationship reminds me of the quote that says a loved one “knows the song in your heart so well he or she can sing it back to you when you have forgotten the words.” Considering how Solomon lived his final years, I hope he really did have someone  special in his harem to inspire him while he was young.

As for Arielah, her story had me asking questions. Where is God when the folks who are supposed to protect and care for us fail? Why does He allow it? When we are helpless and hurting, does He care?

And my answers? As Arielah learned . . .

Sometimes He takes away the people and things with which we prop ourselves up to remind us that He “will never leave us nor forsake us” and to teach us that we “dare not trust the sweetest frame” but must trust ourselves to Him, first, last, and always.

Love’s Sacred Song is a significant, powerful story. Thanks to Revell Publishers for sending a copy for me to review. Would you like to experience Arielah’s story? Here are two ways to get your hands on a copy . . .

(1) Enter this drawing. Leave a comment on this post to be entered to win a copy of the book. For bonus, you can “like” my new Facebook page here and then let me know in the comment you leave. The drawing will remain open until next Wednesday, March 21. (2) Follow this link to purchase the book.

About the author: Mesu Andrews is an author and speaker who has devoted herself to passionate study of Scripture. Harnessing her deep love for God’s Word, Andrews brings the biblical world alive for her audiences.

Mesu and her husband, Roy, have two grown children and (Praise God!) a growing number of grandkids. They live in Washington, where Roy teaches at Multnomah University. They have a Rottweiler-pitbull named Bouzer who keeps Mesu company while she writes. You can connect with her at this link.

Renee Ann Smith

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I teach literature in a Christian high school by day and write inspirational fiction by night. I love to share heart-touching quotes and stories here on my blog. So glad you stopped by!

59 responses to Where was God . . . ? (Love’s Sacred Song review and giveaway)

  1. Great review. I love how it is about Song of Solomon since that is book of the bible that many of us do not know that much about.

    I would love to win this book, I have been hearing great things about it.

    I have also liked your facebook page.

  2. sounds like a great book!

  3. sounds like a lot of ground covered here. thanks Renee for the invite…
    Jamie Carie’s ‘The Guardian Duke’ Giveaway on St Pat’s this Saturday if you’d like to enter 🙂

  4. Thanks so much for your review, Renee! I love your reflection questions at the end and the way the Lord spoke to your heart. Isn’t He amazing how He whispers His personal message to each one of us? Blessings as you continue to minister through this blog!

    And thanks to Jennifer and Michelle for your comments! 😉

    • Mesu, I don’t know if you remember, but we met at ACFW. It was fun to speak in person since I’d already read Love Amid the Ashes. Hope all is well with you and that your next book is just as amazing as the first two! Wishing you many blessings!

      • Hi Renee!!
        I DO remember you!! I was so thrilled to see that you were on the blog tour list! I noticed your article on Keiki’s Vessel Project a few months ago, too. Maybe we’ll connect again at the conference in Dallas! You’re a busy gal, and it looks like the Lord is blessing the work of your hands. Blessings for sure!

  5. Waving hi to Jennifer, Michelle, and FHCT! Glad you joined in the fun here. Thanks for the FB likes and all the support 🙂

  6. I haven’t read your book but it sure does look like a delightful read. I am throwing my name in the ring for the give-a way! Thanks for visiting with us all…I write in the Idahope group in Boise of ACFW. Our Conference is this coming Saturday.

    • Hi Mary Ann! I’d love to sneak into your conference, but I’m meeting with the Portland Metro Church Librarians on Saturday. Maybe next year! 🙂 Writer’s Conferences are SOOOOOO fun!!! And Boise isn’t too far!

  7. This sounds like a great book! Thank you for the opportunity! I review so many children’s books that it would be great to read a book written for adults! =)

  8. This book is on my to be read list. I’d love to read it.

    I also like your new FB page.

  9. Renee, your review itself has some wonderful lessons. I don’t have Facebook or I’d give it the thumbs-up! The book looks great too, and I look forward to reading it.itk

  10. Great review! I’d love to read this book.

  11. I already put this book on my TBR/Wishlist. Thanks for the opportunity to win a copy of this book.

    I like you on Facebook.

    plb1050[at]gmail[dot]com

  12. Hi, Mary Ann, Bekki, Dawn, Diane, and Kate! Thanks for stopping by 🙂

  13. Thanks for sharing this review, Renee. It sounds like an intriguing story.

  14. I saw this book listed in a catalog and thought it looked good! look forward to reading it 😀

  15. Great review! Thanks for the giveaway!

  16. I’ve just recently seen this book popping up in various places. It sounds really good. Thank you for the opportunity to win!

    I already liked your Facebook page.

    Beth

  17. I would love to win/read this book! I SO enjoyed Amid the Ashes— what an amazing author!!

    I also “liked” your FB page.

    Thanks for the giveaway!

  18. I read your review and would like very much to read this book. I have liked your facebook page also.

  19. Hi, Sandra, Nicole, Abbi, Beth, Ladette, and Mary! Thanks for the FB likes and for joining in the fun here at Doorkeeper 🙂

  20. This sounds like a thought provoking book. I love when an author takes a Bible story and brings it to life. That takes imagination and talent. I enjoy the way you review a book Renee.

  21. This book sounds amazing and I can’t wait to read it. Thank you for your generosity, Mesu, and thanks for hosting this giveaway, Renee!

    gwen[dot]gage[at]gmail[dot]com

  22. Great review Renee – please enter me in the give away. Our book club read Love Amid the Ashes last year and this book is on my TBR list after hearing about it from Mesu.

  23. Thanks for your kind words, Susan! Glad you stopped in today, Gwen and Sharon! You all are in the drawing 🙂

  24. Just today I ready Rachel McRae’s glowing review of this book, over on the blog she writes for Lifeway. I’d love to read it!

    • Rachel was one of the first people to encourage me in my debut novel. It’s sort of scary waiting to hear what folks have to say about a story that’s so dear to your heart…Rachel was–and is–so gracious. (As is Renee!) 😉

  25. Renee, so glad you dropped by! Likewise I’ll be following things at Doorkeeper!

  26. Sounds like a great story. (I liked your FB page too.)

  27. So glad you came to join in the fun, Becky and Hilarey! You’re in the drawing 🙂

  28. This book sounds great!
    I cant wait to read it!!
    dymesich[at]juno[dot]com

  29. I would love to read this book. It kind of reminds of Francine Rivers book, Redeeming Love. I also “liked” you on Facebook.

  30. The book looks amazing. Thanks for the chance at the give-away! I already “like” your FB page. =)

  31. Oo! I saw this one on the shelves at my local CBA store the other day and wished it was book buying day! I have downloaded Love Amid the Ashes to my Kindle and would love to get my hands on this one sometime soon!

    I’m a fan of the Facebook page too :D.

    Thanks for the chance!
    Carol

  32. Hi, Leah, Emily, Donna, and Carol! Thanks for the FB likes and for stopping by to join in. Here’s to a win . . . for one of you 🙂

  33. sounds like a wonderful book thanks

    ABreading4fun [at] gmail [dot] com

  34. Oh, this sounds really good!! I’d love to read it!!

  35. This book sounds so interesting. I love stories that put us back into Bible times

  36. This sounds like a great book! Thanks for the chance!

    I like you on Facebook.

    nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

  37. Welcome to the party, Apple Blossom, Helene, Kim, and Nancye! Hope you all are having a great weekend 🙂

  38. This book went on my TBR list the minute I saw it! Can’t wait to read it. Thanks for the review and giveaway, Renee! I liked your FB page, just so ya know. =)

  39. Hey Renee Ann, thanks for posting this review and giveaway!! This book sounds amazing, I would love to be entered 🙂 Thanks for the giveaway Renee Ann & Mesu, what a blessing this opportunity is!!
    Renee Ann, I also follow you on facebook 🙂 Have a good weekend, ladies, and best wishes to the other entrants!
    Kara

  40. Thanks for the FB likes, Shelby and Kara! I’m glad you joined in the drawing. Here’s to a win for one of you 🙂

  41. This sounds like a great book. Thanks for the chance.

    nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

  42. I like you on Facebook

    nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

  43. *not an entry* I had to scroll so many times to get through the comments I thought I’d never find the box! Great review Renee, I’m reading and enjoying it now. 🙂

  44. Got review. This seems like a great book.

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