This week I’m featuring my third novel, Under Moonlit Skies. Stewart and Esther’s story is centered around 1 Samuel 16:7
My hero, Stewart Brant, is a cowboy with little education, few possessions, and a faith that’s been simmering on the back burner for years. When he falls for a refined city girl, Esther Stanton, he feels unworthy of her affections. It isn’t until he learns the true value of a person in God’s eyes comes from within, that his life turns for the better.
Instead of me telling you about the novel, I thought it would be fun to share an excerpt with you regarding Stew’s spiritual struggle. I hope you’ll enjoy this excerpt from Under Moonlit Skies!
UNDER MOONLIT SKIES EXCERPT
Stew rapped his fingers on the stone fireplace, unable to rid his mind of Charlotte’s words. Was she right? Had Esther been in earnest about her affections for him? The thought both thrilled and haunted him.
Esther’s Bible seemed to call to him yet again, this time like a forgotten friend. The only remembrance he had left of her, save his memories, he slid the book of Scriptures from the mantel. He opened it at its center, recalling his ma being partial to the eighty-fourth Psalm. He ran his finger down the page, pausing on the final verses to read them through a second time.
“I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than dwell in the tents of wickedness.
For the Lord God is a sun and shield; the Lord will give grace and glory. No good thing will He withhold from them that walk uprightly.
Oh Lord of hosts, blessed is the man that trusteth in Thee.”
Closing the Bible, Stew leaned against the rough stones of the fireplace.
No good thing will He withhold from them that walk uprightly. Blessed is the man that trusteth in Thee.
Was that all there was to it? Do the right thing and God would bless you? It couldn’t be that simple. Though he’d not done anything too horrific in his past, he couldn’t say he’d “walked uprightly” either. For some time now, he’d known his relationship with the Lord was sorely in need of improvement. Yet, his efforts had been meager at best, mainly prayers pleading for Esther to stay and attending church more out of desire for Esther’s company than the Lord’s.
No wonder the Lord had turned a deaf ear to him.
He clutched the Bible to his chest. Barring some miracle, it was probably too late for him and Esther. And yet, the verse said the Lord withheld nothing from them that walked uprightly. It said right in Psalm eighty-four the Lord blessed those who were faithful to Him. Maybe that’s what Esther had wanted him to learn. More than once she’d inquired about his relationship with the Lord. Was that what had been lacking between them? Had she left her Bible with him in hopes he’d grow in his faith?
Hope stirred in his chest as he returned the Bible to the mantel. From now on, he’d make every effort to be the man of faith Esther had longed for him to be.
I loved creating Stew. His character was patterned in part after one of my favorite actors, Jimmy Stewart. He and Esther both face internal and external challenges wrapped in an adventure of intrigue and love. I hope you’ll be blessed by their story.
If you’d like to read more of the novel, you can read the entire first chapter on Amazon. READ CHAPTER
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