Trusting God or trusting others – I started making decisions for myself from an early age. My older brothers had built a wooden go-cart and talked to me about the thrill of freewheeling. With no brakes and only a piece of rope tied to the front wheels to steer the crude mode of transport, we found the biggest hill to try it out. “You coming?” they asked.
At four I loved excitement and decided to join my two brothers. We jumped in and headed downwards on the road. All went well, the rush of wind blowing my golden locks all over the place. I squealed with delight, totally unaware of the danger.
Back in 1962, the roads were not as congested as they are today. You could count a number of cars on one hand that drove up and down that hill in a day.
Hurtling at breakneck speed, my brother saw a car turning right across our decent, with no breaks he swerved the go-cart to the left and hit the curb to avoid the car. I flew out and ended up slamming my head against a garden brick wall cutting open my head. I appeared to be the only one hurt.
Dragging the damaged cart, we walked back home. My brother carried me on his back all the way.
When we arrived, my parents were horrified to see my bloodstained face and quickly took me to the local hospital where I received stitches and a telling off.
Once home with the shouting finished, and the punishment dealt out, my father told me never to trust my brothers again. My mother, on the other hand, said that I must trust God in all things and that it was He who had kept me from a more severe fate.
My parents were opposites, one believed and the other didn’t just like Lydia’s parents. Read my penny’s worth further down of an incredible woman called Lydia whose trust in God led her to the truth.
About the Book:
Author: Diana Wallis Taylor
Genre: Biblical Fiction
Release Date: October 3, 2017
Smart, strong, and a follower of the Jewish God, Lydia has nonetheless quietly conformed to the expectations of the wealthy Roman society into which she was born. Her father marries her off at age fifteen to a much older man whom she dislikes. Despite an unpleasant wedding and a marriage that doesn’t improve with age, Lydia remains a dutiful and faithful wife. When her husband is killed, years later, Lydia vows to remain single and returns to her father’s house in Thyatira with her twelve-year-old daughter.
There, a new life begins to emerge as she is trained in the family dye business. Lydia displays an aptitude for trade in the male-dominated world of first-century commerce. Her brother, who had chosen service in the Roman army rather than work in his father’s business, is at odds with his sister. Jealous of her quiet success as she learns the dye business, he’s especially befuddled by what he considers to be Lydia’s obsession with the Jewish religion. When their father dies, Cassius inherits the family’s home; Lydia inherits the business, and unbeknownst to her brother, a small villa in the city of Philippi.
Lydia flees with her mother and daughter to Philippi where she sets up shop. At the mercy of a patriarchal society, Lydia needs a man to serve as the public face for her business. She discovers the right person in the handsome face of Greek man she’d hired — an employee with whom she develops a close friendship. The plot thickens as Lydia meets a strange man named Paul the apostle who is stirring up crowds in town. When Lydia’s brother shows up in Philippi, determined to force her to sell the business, he discovers plenty of fuel to accomplish his goals.
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My penny’s worth
Lydia has a great love for Adonai, a gift from her mother who is Jewish. Her father, on the other hand, worships the Roman Gods, so conflict is very much part of Lydia’s life. What I like about this book based on the woman of Philippi is the inner struggle that Lydia and her mother face. They are under the rule of husband and father, as this is a time when women obeyed men in all things. However, their hearts cannot be ruled in such a way. In their belief is their freedom – trusting God rather than household Gods to show them the way.
After the battle between father and son which culminates in Lydia taking on a role usually fulfilled by a man, she thrives and prospers, but her accomplishment has to be kept hidden. However, as the plot unravels, Lydia realizes that all is not down to her talent but a more significant hand guiding her to a higher future.
This period history is fascinating as it is just after Jesus rose from the dead. The author gives meat to the bones of the life Lydia may have lived.
I felt the excitement of Lydia hearing about Jesus from Paul and watched her grow strong after their encounters.
Sometimes the dialogue duplicated itself as Lydia retold her story, something that could have been hinted at rather than going over it all again. Apart from that I enjoyed this book and journeying with Lydia as she lived through turbulent and uncertain times.
Lydia trusted her abilities but trusting God became her source of comfort and strength and opened doors to a mention in the bible. She must have been one remarkable woman.
If you like biblical fiction then in mho you may like this book for its gutsy depiction of a brave and strong woman determined to succeed in a man’s world.
Thank you, Diana Wallis Taylor, for writing Lydia.
*I received this book for free. No compensation was received, and all opinions are my own.*
About the Author:
Diana Wallis Taylor is best known for her creative stories based on women in the Bible. Thousands have read and enjoyed her books including Mary Chosen of God, Ruth, Mother of Kings, Martha, Journey to the Well, Mary Magdalene, and Claudia, Wife of Pontius Pilate. She is the recipient of numerous awards and honors with the San Diego Library naming her one of 12 “Writers to Watch” in 2017 for Mary, Chosen of God. Her books have received Gold and Silver Medallion Awards for Christian Fiction and she is a San Diego Christian Writer’s Guild “Writer of the Year.” Mary, Chosen of God is a 2017 Christy Award nominee. An inspirational speaker, Diana also leads creative writing and poetry workshops. She lives in San Diego with her husband, Frank. They have six grown children and ten grandchildren
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In honor of her tour, Diana is giving away
Grand Prize Package: Lydia, Woman of Philippi, “Give Thanks” painting on plate by Donna White for The Hearthside Collection, Inc., commemorative Whitaker House/Anchor Distributors coloring book (not in photo).
1st Place Package: Lydia, Woman of Philippi, abba Jerusalem pillar candle, cassia scented, commemorative Whitaker House/Anchor Distributors coloring book (not in photo).
2nd Place Package: Lydia, Woman of Philippi, abba Jerusalem Spikenard candle tin with lid!
Click the link to enter!