Paul tells us that Old Testament stories are included in the Bible as examples. We are to learn from them. But how do we? Davis has used an innovative technique to help us learn a lesson from the story of Mephibosheth.
The novel starts out with the very successful author and megachurch pastor, Nick Gregory, self destructing. His wife is leaving him and his ministry is imploding. Giving in to the dark voices in his head, he tries to kill himself by driving into a traffic barrier. When he comes to, he is no longer Nick but a crippled and broken young man in 800 B.C. He is Mephibosheth, trained to be a king but now a destitute outcast. Nick wakes up from a coma, again in the present. While most of the novel takes place in the present, once more Nick continues his experience as Mephibosheth.
The stories are not exactly parallel but Davis does a great job of drawing out the lessons for contemporary life from the biblical story. Mephibosheth was royalty, a descendant of Saul. And we are royalty, being in Christ. Mephibosheth had declined into the state of thinking of himself as a “dead dog.” Perhaps we have ruined our life and Christian witness. Perhaps we have come to the point of feeling crippled and like a dead dog too. Is there any possibility that God's mercy and grace can rescue us and restore us to His service?
The novel is very honest about the experiences of the one being broken and those around him. It was not easy for Nick to lose everything. He fought what God was doing for a long time. It was not easy for Abbi to be the wife of the man God was breaking. It is not an easy nor enjoyable task to come alongside and be a support in that situation. In the end she had issues she needed to face too.
This novel has a great message. Although we are broken, although we are ruined, God can restore us to be the person He has designed us to be. It won 't be easy. Cutting away the bits God does not want in our lives can be painful. We may lose possessions, reputation and status. But what we find in a life surrendered to God is worth it.
I really enjoyed this book and highly recommend it.
Max Davis is the author or co-author of over twenty published books. He holds degrees in journalism and biblical studies. He and his wife live in Greenwell Springs, Louisiana. You can find out more at http://www.maxdavisbooks.com/.
Worthy Publishing, 320 pages.
I received a complimentary egalley of this book from the publisher for the purpose of an independent and honest review.