How much could a person forgive? We all try to forgive slight insults, but could we forgive
an act that threatened our family? It is the issue of forgiving the worst that is the driving
force of Forgiven by Shelley Shepard Gray.
The story is set in an Amish community where forgiveness is not only honored but also
expected. The Amish honor the belief that God will not forgive a person unless he is willing
to forgive others. Forgiveness is also crucial in an isolated community where everyone depends
on each other.
When Jonathon Lundyís barn is burned down and his sister injured by a mystery personís
careless smoking, he knows he must forgive and forget but how can he forgive a man unwilling
As his sister Winny recovers, she is visited by Samuel Miller, who grew up Amish but left
for an Englisherís life. As she heals they become very close, but it is an ill-fated love.
Winny can not leave the Amish fold for if she does she will be shunned by her Amish friends and
family. She canít ask Samuel to give up his life, so she tries to bury the feelings. But, is
that what God wants?
This book is a wonderful tale of forgiveness and the power of love. The simple Amish life
is not worry free and though they donít have modern bothers, they are just as plagued by the
human emotions that try us all. This story is a look into the human heart and what we can and
can not endure. Gray creates a story that is driven by the powerful emotions and choices of
the character and is filled with drama and internal struggles. It is easy to get lost in this
wonderful tale of true love and willingness to let go of negative emotions for the sake of
community and friendship.