As an author, I like to read works of fiction that inspire me to work harder at the craft of writing. Rarely do I read an adult romance novel that has enough complexity built into it to cause me to want to go back to page 1 and study the author’s character development, plot structure, pace and style. “The Wedding Chapel” written by bestselling author Rachel Hauck and published by Thomas Nelson & Zondervan Fiction is one of those stories. In full disclosure, my wife, Mary, and I consider Rachel a personal friend and we have read some of her other works. Rachel is a recognized talent. This year, she won the critically acclaimed, Christy Award. From a personal perspective, Rachel is the real deal – an authentic person of ethical character and follower of Jesus Christ. If she ever ran for public office, I’m convinced she make her Florida constituents proud. In my opinion as a reader, “The Wedding Chapel,” elevates Rachel into that special category of Master Story and Truth Teller.
Rachel weaves many social issues of contemporary relevant importance into the story. One touched me as a man. Adoption is of life-or-death importance to me. As an infant, I was adopted into a wonderful, loving orthodox Jewish family and neighborhood at about the same time period as Rachel’s key characters played out their respective historical back stories. I rarely gave much thought to the pain my birth mother endured. I am not speaking about labor pains. Rachel captured the lifelong emotional anguish a mother faces when she says good-bye to her baby.
I am eternally grateful my birth mother gave me a chance at life. Almighty God placed me in a family where I was given a deep, Godly heritage. I am reasonably confident if Roe vs. Wade had been decided in 1951 rather than January 1973, I would not be writing this review. I would not have come to know Jesus as my personal Redeemer and the longed-for Messiah of Israel and Savior of the world. I would not have introduced many to Him and because He placed me into a Jewish home, I have, as a Jewish follower of Jesus, a unique perspective to explain to Christians why they must witness Messiah to their Jewish friends.
I want to thank Rachel for having the clarity, conviction and courage to write this story. If anyone reading this review is struggling with an unwanted pregnancy, or knows someone who is, Rachel’s story may help them make an eternal decision to choose life for the pre-born baby. As for me, maybe Jesus will lead me to find out if my birth mother is still alive. If she is, maybe He will bring restoration of a lost relationship like Rachel Hauck portrayed in her masterful work, “The Wedding Chapel.”