I am thrilled to be able to take part in the Blog Tour for this exciting new Advent Resource. Especially thrilled because I have the joy of being one of the contributors! So this review is not biased in any way, honest!
A Good God idea
Many months ago, Rachel Yarworth had an idea, and shared it with a group known as the Association of Christian Writers. She wasn’t sure if it was a good idea, but it so happens that quite a few other people thought it was actually an excellent idea, as they readily signed up to be involved. I believe that Rachel’s good idea was a God idea, and one that has resulted in this really beautiful book.
The Jesse Tree
What was her idea? Well she had the vision for producing a family friendly devotional style book, that could be used during Advent. It would be based on the idea of the Jesse Tree – traditionally a pictorial or physical representation of a tree with its branches that helps to tell the story of the Bible from creation right up until to the nativity of Christ. Although Jesse was a direct ancestor of Jesus, the Jesse Tree is more than just the physical lineage of Jesus. It is a study of how the people and the events of the Old Testament all point towards His coming.
25 Fabulous Writers
But Rachel did not want to do this on her own and so asked if people would be willing to contribute to one of the 25 daily studies that would make up the whole. Before long she had 25 fabulous Christian Writers* keen to take part. The result is a wonderful collection of different voices, telling different stories, and adding their own insights and flavour to them. Every one of the contributors love Jesus, and that is so obvious in their writing.
The daily thoughts are short, and written in accessible language, so they are great for family use, and for those new to, or just exploring the Christian faith. After each story are some thoughtful questions to ponder and discuss together. And then to top it all there are beautiful stained glass images to colour and cut out so that families can make their own Jesse Trees. If you don’t want to cut up the book these Jesse Tree decorations can also be downloaded from Rachel’s Website here.
God’s Extraordinary Plan
What does Noah’s ark have to do with Jesus? Or Abraham and Isaac? Or Jacob’s ladder, or Rahab’s scarlet rope? Why did God give the prophets things to say that didn’t make sense at the time they were living? Or use the most unlikely people to become the physical ancestors of Jesus? The Jesse Tree Anthology takes us in a wonderful journey from creation to Christmas, and opens our eyes to God’s extraordinary extravagantly detailed plan to bring Salvation to the world in the person of Jesus.
A Valuable Resource
Rachel has done a fabulous job of drawing the Anthology together and getting it published. The themes, the questions, the artwork and the glorious cover are all due to her hard work and commitment to her original vision. I can so heartily recommend The Jesse Tree Anthology to you. It is far more than a book; it is a valuable resource that can be used over and over again, and will bring Jesus into the centre of Christmas for families everywhere.
I will also have a few signed copies available to sell myself. Contact me if you are interested.
*Contributors include: Liz Carter, Maressa Mortimer, Natasha Woodcraft, Jocelyn-Anne Harvey, Rob Seabrook, Emily Owen, Claire Musters. Sheelagh Aston, Joanna Watson, Shaoan Hazel, Liz Manning, Matt McChlery, Lesley Crawford, Alex Banwell, Olusola Sophia Anyanwu, Joy Margetts, Joy Vee, Ruth Leigh, Jonathon Bugden, Jo Acharya, Anne Calver, Jenny Sanders, Fay Rowlands, Rowena Cross, Rachel Yarworth
Joy Margetts is a published author and blogger. Her books are works of Christian Historical fiction. Set in medieval Wales against the backdrop of Cistercian abbey life, they tell stories of faith, hope and God’s redemptive power. Her debut novel ‘The Healing‘ was published by Instant Apostle on 19 March 2021. ‘The Pilgrim‘, her second full length novel, was published by Instant Apostle on 22 July 2022, and her third novel ‘The Bride’ will be published on 20th October 2023. She also has her first non-fiction book, an Advent Devotional called ‘Christ Illuminated‘, being published by Kevin Mayhew this autumn.
More information on Joy, and her books can be found here www.joymargetts.com