I Didn’t Marry Him

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There’s a line in Jane Eyre that goes like this:

“Reader, I married him.”

The line always sort of catches me, because I’m not used to being addressed while I’m reading a novel. Also, the understatement of it gives me a start.

However.

That line isn’t in my book.

Apparently, there are some readers of my book out there who are under the impression that I married the man who rescued me in the courtroom when I was in a crumpled heap on the floor.

Reader, I didn’t marry him.

The story was a fantastic flight of fancy I took one day when I was preparing a Sunday school lesson on justification. The word used in Romans denotes a legal transaction, where the debt is paid and the judge is satisfied. I wanted the concept to become real to the women in my class. The story I told them and later put in my book is completely imaginary.

Except, well, it happened on a deeper level. It’s a little scary, how much the girl in the story is like me. And she is me, really. But I’ve never stolen a credit card number in my life. And I’ve never been to India or at a Thai resort.

Can you be ok with that? That it didn’t happen, but it did?

I was a crumpled, ruined wretch, and my Jesus stepped in and saved my wrecked life, and asked me to spend eternity with Him, and is getting mansions ready even now. The details about the first-class tickets and ivory Taj Mahal and leather bags and receipts blowing away in the wind are just shadow words. You haven’t read my book and don’t know what I’m referencing? You can do us both a favor and buy it here.

I have to admit it’s been an interesting and unnerving season, getting feedback from readers. I heard in a round-about way that some speaker was telling a youth group that they shouldn’t read my book, so the girls went home and burned their copies. Then they told my aunt, who said it’s actually a good book, and they seemed interested in reconsidering. Then I heard that some readers think I stole the numbers and traveled the world and married the man.

All of this mostly amuses me. I don’t feel too jumpy and defensive. I’m no better than the girl who did steal numbers and go cavorting in India. I don’t have to defend myself, but I do want to put this out there to settle any questions that might be floating in the ether: I didn’t marry the man.

25 thoughts on “I Didn’t Marry Him

  1. When I read your book it was very clear to me that the above mentioned story was an allegory and that it was a beautiful illustration of how we have messed up but Jesus came to rescue us. I am very surprised that there would be readers who couldn’t see the connection. Jesus loves us more than a husband ever would and the Bible says in Isaiah that “the Lord (our) maker is (our) husband.” That has been a comfort to me many times. So…maybe you did “marry” him!:)

  2. I’ve always loved your book and would recommend it to anyone. Justification became real to me after reading this story. I admire you in not being defensive over this! We need more people like you in the world.

  3. Wow, amazing. If there is one part of your book that I’ve read and reread it’s that story. .I love the pictures….the truth, the way the Redeemer comes to the rescue.

  4. Anita dear, I was a wee bit disappointed in this post. I thought maybe we would get to see your version of your sister’s wedding. I’m so glad for you that you were able to join that family celebration.

    And I was u-m-m-m more than disappointed that someone actually didn’t catch on to the allegory in your book and made such a rash statement that people burned your book. I’m glad I don’t know who it was. And I assume he meant it well. It was very clear to me that that was an allegory, and I’m sorry it wasn’t clear to that man with influence.

  5. I was encouraged and challenged by your book, and I totally “got” the allegory! I stumbled upon your book in a store in upstate NY, was intrigued enough to purchase it (as an older single), and have since enjoyed your thoughtful blog posts. Thank you for sharing your heart through your written words!

  6. Oh Anita! I’m sorry and upset for your sake that people have misunderstood your book, and the heart of your message, enough to advise against reading it. I totally got that that story was an allegory, but it probably helped that I knew you had never done and been those things. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Someday when we’re all enjoying our mansions and our Bridegroom, thankfully these things won’t matter in the ways they do now!

  7. I’m sorry, but I’m laughing. I can’t imagine people thinking you were writing autobiographically and not allegorically. You write beautifully.

  8. I’ve always loved that story of the courtroom scene and applied it to my life w Jesus!!! Ur book came to me at a time in my life that I needed it and was the words I needed to face the next day. I will always remember the night I laid on my floor and wept while reading cause I wasn’t alone and the way I was feeling was normal. Im still on my journey to finding complete joy like I want for my life..and still face that surrendering everyday to the unfulfilled dreams. Thank u for allowing God to use u and for the work iu put into the book!

  9. Well, I have read your book….and I like it! =) I think I’ll go pull out the book tonight and read that story again! =) No, you’re not being defensive…you are “just saying”! =)

  10. Every good thing of true value faces some opposition, eh? I support the message of your book… 100%… and I remain a loyal fan! ๐Ÿ™‚ Seriously, where do people dream up this stuff?

  11. It must feel a bit vulnerable to be an author and know that people may misunderstand and misinterpret. Please do keep writing! I love how you encourage and inspire through your writing!

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