by Ginger Garrett
Before Samson was an Old Testament legend, he was a prodigal son, an inexperienced suitor, a vengeful husband, and a lost soul driven by his own weakness. This is his story as told by three strong women who loved him—the nagging, manipulative mother who pushed him toward greatness, the hapless Philistine bride whose betrayal propelled him into notoriety, and the emotionally damaged seductress—the famous Delilah—who engineered his downfall and propelled him to his destiny. Desired celebrates the God of Israel’s ability to work powerfully in the midst of hopes, fears, desires, and sorrows.
☻☻☻☻☺ (4 out of 5 smiles)
Desired: The Untold Story of Samson and Delilah is written from the point-of-view of three women in Samson’s life: his mother, a young Philistine girl (who becomes his wife), and finally Delilah. Ginger Garrett’s writing is phenomenal—a mastery of words and phrases that painted pictures and stole my breath. This story depicted Samson, a complex, bigger-than-life biblical character, in ways that I could apply to my daily walk with the Lord. A Samson-sized feat, indeed.
This story was not what I expected. Seeing Samson through his mother’s eyes was an unsettling conundrum. Amazon’s description labeled her as nagging and manipulative, which didn’t scratch the surface of this Hebrew mama’s impact on her miracle-boy-turned-renegade. At times, I felt embarrassed for the woman—so overbearing were her maternal instincts. I didn’t really like Samson’s Philistine wife or Delilah. I generally pitied the whole bunch! But I found myself unable to stop reading because I needed to know the fate of each one. This is where Ginger’s superb writing excelled.
The Book of Judges glimpses a time in Israel’s history when heroes were hard to find:
“At that time the Israelites…went home to their tribes and clans, each to his own inheritance. In those days Israel had no king; everyone did as he saw fit.” – Judges 21:24-25
The extensive research and biblical accuracy helped explain many questions from Samson’s story in Judges 13-16. But be forewarned. This is not a novel for the faint-of-heart. Just as the stories in Judges are graphic in content and description, so Ginger’s novel describes the characters’ activities realistically—without sensationalizing.
I can sum up the message of this book with words from Samson’s mother that challenged me for days. (Don’t you love it when a book has that kind of impact?)
“I could not understand why everyone devoted themselves to understand the secret of his strength. Why did it matter? Why did no one care what his strength was for, why it had been given to him? Why did no one seek that answer? No one wanted to know. They preferred the excitement of miracles to the hard work of change, the hard work of breaking away from a culture that enslaved them all so comfortably.” – Desired, (Kindle location 3630)
If you’d like to know more about Ginger Garrett or her books, you can find her at: www.GingerGarrett.com.