Book: Finding Freedom
Author: Brittany Nicole Lewis
This month I read the book, “Finding Freedom” by Brittany Lewis. Lewis has a way of writing such a detailed story and develops her characters so carefully that it almost feels like reading a true memoir of a real person. It almost makes you wonder how many of these communities actually exist and thrive today.
The story opens in a secluded Christian community called Zion that is reminiscent of the Amish in their elders, rules, dress, and shunning tendencies. Katie Martin is a young girl growing up in the community who feels out of place or like something is not quite right. The entire beginning of the book is dedicated to helping the reader understand all of the complexities and rules of this community as the story follows Katie through parts of her childhood experiences in this community up to the point that she reaches the age to be matched with her “soul mate” who is chosen by a board of elders.
People in this community do not get to choose who they marry. They may choose wrong and the marriage would be a failure. So, the elders chose who married who in Zion and that was just the way it worked, even if you loved someone else. Many of the married couples had pills hidden in their house that helped them “cope” with this. Katie couldn’t imagine a life like this. She becomes close friends with David and after talking to him one day they decide to leave Zion. David’s parents do not want to leave and neither does Katie’s brother. Katie’s parents, however, know that something doesn’t feel right and they agree to leave with Katie and David.
Katie, David, and Katie’s parents leave Zion and go to stay at a home of a friend outside of Zion, Stephen. After a while, Katie’s mother expresses to her husband that she is not happy and doesn’t know how to transition into this new way of life. They find out that there are homes for people like them who are transitioning from the Zion way of living to living in the world. I won’t give too much away, but Katie and David are eventually all on their own.
The theme throughout this book is a phrase that God spoke to Katie one day, “Freedom through relationship.” At first she is frustrated because she has no idea what that means. However, she goes on a journey of growth and maturity in her relationship with God and everything she needs to understand unfolds before her eyes.
Throughout this book, Katie has to learn to have a two-sided relationship with God, not just what she was taught at Zion. She learns that there is freedom in a relationship with Christ and that she can speak to God freely. She finds the truth that she needs to be obedient to God and not to people. She comes to many realizations and uncovers so much through her spiritual and emotional evolution through this story. It was hard at first, but Katie eventually found she needed to surrender all areas of her life to God and hold nothing back in order to find freedom from the shackles of Zion.
Katie isn’t the only one who finds freedom through Christ. David faces the pressures of providing for a family and struggles of starting a new life all alone with Katie and no one else from their families nearby. There is a hint that her parents begin to find peace in their new home and her mother seems much happier. Katie is still worried about her brother, Michael, who cut communication with them upon their fleeing from Zion.
Anyone who likes reading about communities like Zion and how people find relationships with God through hard circumstances will love this book! It truly takes you on a journey of transformation as Katie learns exactly what it means to have a relationship with God and what the bible truly says about Christianity.
If you’d like to check out this book on Amazon, follow this link: http://amzn.to/2FbyFVZ
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