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Authors: Tessa Afshar

In the Field of Grace

BOOK: In the Field of Grace
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Praise for
In the Field of Grace
 

I had a long business trip and planned to scan
In the Field of Grace
while on the road. Well, forget that—I was hooked from the first page! This is an amazing narrative. I was overwhelmed by the beauty of Ruth and Boaz’s story. The biblical account came alive as the love story of Ruth and Boaz unfolded. I feel blessed to have read this book.
I devoured it, reading late into the night.

        
—Debbie Macomber,
New York Times
bestselling author

Packed with spiritual truth, impeccable research, and well-placed humor,
In the Field of Grace
takes your heart on a journey of love, loss, and triumph.
This powerful retelling of Ruth and Boaz’s story is my favorite novel this year.

            
—Mesu Andrews, author and ECPA Christian Book Award winner

Tessa Afshar is a brilliant writer and a beautiful soul. With a strong, poetic voice, Tessa brings biblical stories to life in a way that makes me want to kneel, pray, shout, and sing, all at the same time. In Tessa’s latest novel,
In the Field of Grace
, she explores the story of Ruth and Boaz, their hardships and their breakthroughs.
I finished the book feeling grateful again for God’s intimate goodness and grace, and I remembered afresh how He sees us, loves us, and cares about every detail of our lives.
Tessa crafts such beautiful books; I never want the stories to end! And the beautiful thing is these stories have the power to shape us and change us when we give God access to our own stories. Well done, Tessa. I can’t wait for your next book!

            
—Susie Larson, national radio host, speaker, and author of
Your Beautiful Purpose
and
The Uncommon Woman

Tessa Afshar offers readers one of the most cherished love stories from the Scriptures! Wonderfully researched,
In the Field of Grace
brings to life the tenderhearted and vulnerable Ruth, who is
sure to captivate biblical fiction lovers
!

            
—Kacy Barnett-Gramckow, author of The Genesis Trilogy and
Dawnlight

The love story between Ruth and Boaz is reimagined with truths as timely today as they were thousands of years ago: reminders of faith, love, and the sovereignty of God.

            
—Tracy L. Higley, author of
The Queen’s Handmaid

A beautifully told story that will truly capture your heart. A must read for biblical fiction fans!

            
—Ginger Garrett, author of
Chosen, Reign,
and
Desired

 

© 2014 by
TESSA AFSHAR

 

All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced in any form without permission in writing from the publisher, except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical articles or reviews.

Some Scripture quotations are taken from the
Holy Bible,
New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2007. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189, U.S.A. All rights reserved.

Some Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible,
New International Version
®
, NIV
®
. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.

Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.
www.zondervan.com
. The “NIV” and “New International Version” are trademarks registered in the United States Patent and Trademark Office by Biblica, Inc.

Some Scripture quotations are taken from
The Holy Bible
, English Standard Version. Copyright © 2000, 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Published in association with the Books & Such Literary Agency, 52 Mission Circle, Suite 122, PMB 170, Santa Rosa, CA 95409-5370;
www.booksandsuch.biz

Edited by Pam Pugh
Interior design: Ragont Design
Cover design: DogEared Design, LLC
Background image: iSrtock / 000011390255
Photo of couple: Kirk DouPonce
Author photo: Christine Richenburg

Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data

Afshar, Tessa.
  In the Field of Grace : a novel / Tessa Afshar.
    pages ; cm
  ISBN 978-0-8024-1097-9
  1. Ruth (Biblical figure)—Fiction. 2. Naomi (Biblical figure)—Fiction.
 3. Women in the Bible—Fiction. 4. Bible fiction. 5. Christian fiction. I. Title.
 PS3601.F47H66 2014
 813′.6—dc23
                                                                                                                  2014002833

We hope you enjoy this book from River North Fiction by Moody Publishers. Our goal is to provide high-quality, thought-provoking books and products that connect truth to your real needs and challenges. For more information on other books and products written and produced from a biblical perspective, go to
www.moodypublishers.com
or write to:

River North Fiction
Imprint of Moody Publishers
820 N. LaSalle Boulevard
Chicago, IL 60610

 

1 3 5 7 9 10 8 6 4 2

 

Printed in the United States of America

 

To Rebecca Rhee, dearest friend through joy and sorrow;
your friendship is like coming home.

 

Friend,

Thank you for choosing to read this Moody Publishers title. It is our hope and prayer that this book will help you to know Jesus Christ more personally and love Him more deeply.

The proceeds from your purchase help pay the tuition of students attending Moody Bible Institute. These students come from around the globe and graduate better equipped to impact our world for Christ.

Other Moody Ministries that may be of interest to you include Moody Radio and Moody Distance Learning. To learn more visit
http://www.moodyradio.org/
and
http://www.moody.edu/distance-learning/

To enhance your reading experience we’ve made it easy to share inspiring passages and thought-provoking quotes with your friends via Goodreads, Facebook, Twitter, and other book-sharing sites. To do so, simply highlight and forward. And don’t forget to put this book on your Reading Shelf on your book community site.

Thanks again, and may God bless you.

The Moody Publishers Team

Prologue

Those who walk uprightly
Enter into peace;
They find rest as they lie in death.
ISAIAH 57:2

 
 

D
eath squatted at Boaz’s door, waiting like a vulture, biding its time. He could sense its presence—inexorable, hungry, patient.

Judith—the wife of his youth, the woman he had married for love, his doe-eyed companion, lay dying.

Boaz leaned over to smooth the dark, sweat-stained hair from her brow. Alerted by his gentle movements, her dog, Melekh, lifted its long snout and inspected Boaz’s movements with suspicious intensity before settling its muzzle on its paws again. The dog’s gaze shifted back to the emaciated woman on the bed. It was a mark of the drastic circumstances that the beast had been allowed on the bed. Normally, it didn’t even make it through the chamber door. Yet as soon as Melekh had come limping in through the threshold, the beast had claimed the place like it had every right of ownership. With profound indifference, Judith’s dog treated Boaz as an annoyance rather than the master.

Boaz ignored Melekh and lifted his wife’s hand, holding it tightly, willing her not to give up. The woman on the bed had thinning, oily hair, and a face that looked like it had melted in the sun on one side, but that wasn’t what Boaz saw. He remembered Judith as she had been when he had met her for the first time, with thick hair
that fell below her hip, and a smile that could melt rock. Not that he had melted. He had been sixteen, a man in his own eyes. His father had sent him north to examine a parcel of land owned by Judith’s father. She had offered him wine and cheese when he arrived. He took the cup from her hands and turned his shoulder on her lingering gaze. He had no time for young girls. This was the first time he had been entrusted with an important mission on his father’s behalf and he intended to do well. The land proved fertile, and his father purchased it based on Boaz’s recommendation. The trade went smoothly, and the two families became friends as a result of the new connection. For years, Judith wove in and out of Boaz’s life, though he took his time getting around to noticing her existence.

Judith acted as a shepherdess for her family. Her father had assigned a herd of his best sheep to her care, knowing her competence with the animals to be equal to any man’s. In the end it was her handling of the herd that had first drawn Boaz to his wife. She often teased that he had needed dumb sheep to act as matchmaker between them. True enough. He had admired her ability with the beasts before he had ever taken notice of her beautiful black eyes or her midnight-dark hair.

“How do you keep them so fat in a drought year?” he had asked one day, addressing her directly for the first time.

She had laughed at him, making him redden with self-consciousness, wondering what he had said that could be construed as funny.

“What?” he said, not bothering to curb the annoyance in his voice.

“They are not fat.”

“They are, compared to my father’s sheep.” And that had been the start of their attachment. Later, she had confessed that she had loved him the first moment she had seen him.

BOOK: In the Field of Grace
10.39Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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