I also remember some people, with no understanding of what came with surviving, saying things to me that made it worse. They tried to comfort me by saying, “God never gives us more than we can handle,” as if the event was by His Hand. How on earth would something like that help me if I thought God did it to me? How could I pray for help from Him, if He condemned me and sent me the pain I needed to heal?
The day I turned away from churches is the day I began to be closer to God. I didn’t need a building to do it for me. I had a place in my home where I could pray directly to My Father, the way Jesus said I should. I didn’t need a group of other flawed humans to decide what message in the Bible I would hear. I was able to discover what the churches never taught as I held the Book in my hands.
That is the difference between being a religious person and a spiritual one. Some religious people are also spiritual. That’s not something I have a problem with, since I was the same until I discovered the closer I pulled to the church, the further away I felt from God. That is also why these books are not welcomed by most Christian readers.
This is a new review from Readers’ Favorite.
Reviewed by: Risah Salazar
Review Rating: 4 Stars
Reviewed by Risah Salazar for Readers’ Favorite
The Scribe of Salem: Ministers of the Mystery by Kathie Costos finds Christopher “Chris” Papadopoulos trying to nurse a broken heart at The Bishop Hotel bar. He is a complete mess of a man whose marriage and career ended badly. His war veteran comrades appear unexpectedly, one after the other at the bar. As they talk about how all their lives seem to have taken a dark turn, a name was brought up – Mandy. A savior, angel, or witch. No one could pinpoint what she is, but one thing is for sure: she heals. You do not find her – she finds you. Next, he meets a couple – Alex and Mary – who, like Mandy it seems, would also turn his life around for the better. Revelation after revelation makes Chris confused but this huge puzzle eventually leads him to rebuild his faith.
Kathie Costos adopts a conversational tone in The Scribe of Salem. The smooth flow of the story helps with the world-building and characterization. The progressive viewpoint regarding spirituality is this book’s best asset. The text reiterates that being religious is different from being spiritual and that the latter is usually preferable. Costos makes a compelling argument through this narrative that can be appreciated by people from all walks of life. Readers who believe in something will strengthen their faith as they read on, while non-believers will surely discover something interesting, no matter how small.
Let’s be honest. We live in a time when far too many people only claim to be Christian. They do not display the qualities Jesus preached about and lived them. They spew contempt, hatred, judgment, and rage fueled by a perverse belief that they are the only ones with moral high ground. We’ve seen it all before. It was what happened in Salem when “Christians” decided that lying, hating and torture were worthy means to end their enemies.
No one was safe during the witch trials because everyone could find themselves accused of witchcraft. They were tortured. Many confessed to end the torture. Those who refused were put to death. Nineteen by hanging and one by crushing. Contrary to popular belief, none of them were burnt in America. However, some of those found guilty of witchcraft were burnt in Scotland, England, and many others in far greater numbers. The basis for all of it was it worked.
Being evil is easier than trying to live the life that Jesus emulated. It is easier to hate than it is to love. Easier to judge than it is to help. Easier to blame those in need, than it is to help fill the needs they have. I often wonder how anyone claiming to be Christian forgets about what being one requires of them.
Too many settle for showing up at a church, getting water poured on their heads as infants, and then having nothing else to do to deserve the price Jesus paid on the Cross. It is up to them to believe what they want in this country, yet far too many want the authority to control what others choose for themselves. On the flip side, I’ve also known people filled with love and compassion spiritually while they still attended church services. While we want the ability to choose for ourselves what we believe, the church people should be able to do the same, but not have the power to force others to live by what they believe.
Over the years, far too many years, most of the people I helped spiritually heal #PTSD said they believed in God and Jesus but wanted nothing to do with a building called “church” nor tolerate the manmade rules within the walls. When they discovered they could, and should, go to God directly on their own, they felt empowered and loved. Isn’t that what we all want? Isn’t that what we all need? To know that we are loved by God when He knows everything there is to know about us and still loves us, is a far greater gift than they ever expected. They are the people whom I wrote the Minsters Of The Mystery series for. There is so much beauty and power within the scriptures of the Bible, but they never heard them in a church.
While there are many parts of the books including scriptures, they are there to support the premises of the promises we all need to know. God does not send evil into your life as a test. Evil sent them. God is there to help you get through what evil is done to you.
God is not flesh but is Spirit and has made us in His image, so if you are judged by what you look like, those judging you do not understand the difference.
God did not seek to control anyone, so He gave us all free will to decide for ourselves. We must remember we have no control over what others do. We can only control what we do.
God forgives and we should too. Not for the sake of those that harmed us, but for our own sake. It is a weight we do not need to carry. For every moment we spend thinking about what was done to us, we cannot spend on what can fill us up with love, joy, and happiness.
In the end, I hope, that readers can see past the noise of the world to the purpose of their lives.