Later that day, Nathan came by to deliver the weekly accounts from the shipyard his father, Beriah, had carefully prepared. He usually spoke with her a short time. Though the lessons had ended, Nathan was always her friend, always encouraging. She wondered what he thought of the rumors about her in the village, but he never mentioned them.
As he touched the mezuzah at the doorpost and uttered the prayer, Mary was sitting quietly on a bench in the courtyard. She’d glanced up briefly, noting his presence, but now her eyes focused listlessly on the small tinkling fountain that Jared had installed years before.
Aware of Nathan standing quietly, watching her, she looked up again.
“What makes your face so sad today, Mary?”
She gave a slight shrug of her shoulders. “Have you not heard? A cousin is coming from Hebron and we are to be betrothed.”
Nathan’s face changed. His smile froze as a brief shadow of anger crossed his handsome features. “So there is no one in Magdala? He must look clear to Hebron to find a groom for the most beautiful maiden in the city?”
She was taken by surprise. Nathan was angry with her father? Her eyes took in his stance and the set of his jaw. Where was the boy she’d known for so long? Standing before her was a man, his body honed and tanned from working outside in the shipyard. His rich auburn hair fell across one eyebrow and his dark eyes flashed. As he stood staring at her in the afternoon shadows, she tried to understand why he was angry at her news.
Nathan turned abruptly and started for the house. “I will give these scrolls to your father.” She stared after him, speechless for a long moment, and a new thought crept its way into her consciousness. There was something more than indignation in his manner. She had not thought of Nathan as more than a friend, and these thoughts startled her. Suddenly Mary sat up taller. He was jealous! Did Nathan care for her? How could she have been so unaware? Her heart beat a little faster at this new knowledge. She let the thoughts play around in her head, remembering how he looked at her. Then she examined her own feelings. The lift in her spirits when he came, the peaceful pleasure of being with him when they studied together. She was always so comfortable with him. She loved the way he laughed at small things, she loved . . . and the realization came. As the sun poured its warmth down on her, the wonderful thoughts rose to the surface. Nathan. Then her shoulders slumped. What was she to do? Her father had already promised her to someone else. The betrothal documents hadn’t been signed. Perhaps there was still time to call it off. Yet she had never disobeyed her father. How could she tell him all his hopes for her were not hers? She struggled to contain her emotions as she rose, composed herself, and went into the house to begin helping her mother with the evening meal. No one must know of her feelings for Nathan. It was too late.
She followed him with her eyes, but Nathan did not look at her when he left. Was their friendship now at an end? A sick feeling filled the pit of her stomach.
From MARY MAGDALENE by Diana Wallis Taylor. Fleming H. Revell Company a division of Baker Publishing Group. Copyright © 2012 by Diana Wallis Taylor. Used by permission. All rights to this material are reserved. Material is not to be reproduced, scanned, copied, or distributed in any printed or electronic form without written permission from Baker Publishing Group. http://www.bakerpublishinggroup.com
Diana Wallis Taylor is the bestselling author of Martha and Journey to the Well. Mary Magdalene, her new novel, is the compelling story of a woman struggling to overcome the madness that enslaves her.
Mary is one of the most mysterious women in the Bible, long maligned as a prostitute or, at best, a woman of questionable reputation. Now, Mary comes to life in the hands of a master storyteller. Lovers of historical and biblical fiction will find this creative telling of her story original and respectful as it opens their eyes to the redeeming work of Christ in the lives of those who followed Him.
Mary Magdalene paints a portrait of a woman devastated by circumstances beyond her control and haunted by terrifying dreams—until she meets Jesus. As told in Luke:48 (ESV), Mary bathed His feet with her tears, then dried them with her hair. The Pharisee who was Jesus’ host was outraged, prompting Jesus to relate a parable of debts forgiven. Then, to Mary, He said, “Your sins are forgiven.” And her life was changed.
This is the story of Mary Magdalene’s journey with the One she followed to the Cross—and who was one of the first to arrive on that long-ago morning when the stone was rolled away.
Hardcover Book : 304 pages
Publisher: Fleming H. Revell Company ( June 01, 2012 )
Item #: 13-590923
Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 8.25 x 0.687inches
Product Weight: 12.0 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
DWTaylor has a way of latching on to my mind, so that I am right there in her book.
Following Mary Magdelene through her day to day life was just so real, it was hard to believe it wasn't a documentry. I found myself holding my breath during death of Christ.
Reviewer: Marjorie N
D W Taylor has a wonderful imagination and cleverly wove together a story that captivated and kept my interest to the very end. The intertwining of the biblical accounts of Jesus' miracles and the happenings surrounding his crucifiction and ressurection were awesome. Kudos on a job well done!