Monday, September 21, 2015

Book Review: The Good, The Bad, And The Grace Of God Jep and Jess Robertson.

I always like to place a picture of the book that I am reviewing in my reviews.  I couldn't find a good image to add to this review.  I lifted this photo from Jep and Jess' Facebook.  I hope they don't mind.

I love the Robertsons.  I have been a big fan of their show Duck Dynasty from the very beginning.  I especially enjoy their crazy uncle Si.  I love their crazy antics, and their down home family values.  I have read Phil Robertsons books, and I was so excited to read Jep and Jess' story.
There is certainly a bit of your usual Robertson silliness in this book, but it is so much more than that.  This is a story of brokenness, and redemption.  Jep and Jess reveal their soft underbelly and struggles as young people in a tough world.
Jep was born into a family that knew the struggle of alcohol abuse.  His father Phil struggled in the past, as well as his older brother Alan.  Jep was the youngest in his large family, and as he reached adulthood, he got into drugs and alcohol.  His problem started as a way to have fun, but soon took over his life.  It is hard to judge where he would have ended up, if his family had not stepped in and force him to choose between his family and the drugs and alcohol.  In love, they staged an intervention that changed his life.  Jep was forced into exile at his parents house, where he started the long road to recovery.  While there he studied the Bible and encountered the forgiveness of God.  God used his family to get a hold of his heart, and it changed his life.
Jess was a young woman when she began a relationship with a youth pastor.  She was young and naive and went into a relationship that she was not ready for.  She felt forced to go along with a relationship that her heart was never truly into.  She got engaged and eventually married the pastor.  She thought it was what was expected of her, and she instantly regretted it.  She was married to a man that she wasn't sure she really loved.  After a short time and facing the rejecting of others, she walked away from her marriage.  She was a young divorcee and felt rejected by many of the people around her.  She felt unlovable and walked out into the world and into decisions she would regret.
At her lowest point she met a young man named Jep Robertson.  She never thought that he could love her, or accept her past, but they became fast friends.  Her friendship with Jep, introduced her to a gracious God who was seeking her heart.  One night as the two of them were studying the Bible, she decided to give her heart to Jesus.  That night Jep took her down to the water and baptized her by the light of headlights from a Jeep.
Jep and Jess continued as great friends, and soon their relationship became romantic.  Jess was still struggling to feel the acceptance of God for the things she had done in her past.  Many of Jep's friends worried about his relationship with Jess.  Jep had to take a stand for Jess, and assure his friends that God had forgiven her sins and they should too.  Jess was graciously accepted as a part of the family, and loved being around the Robertsons.
Jess felt she had to come clean about her past, and she was scared that Jep would never look past it.  Through the grace of God, he was able to accept her past, and without much fanfare the two became engaged.  Though they wanted to elope, Miss Kae would not have it.  In a small ceremony they were married.
This is a great story of real life.  We like to think that life is clean and neat, but it is often filled with detours and pitfalls.  Jep and Jess remind us that life is not always they way we would have hoped.  Often we need tons of God's grace and faith in his love to find his plan for our life.  If you love the Robertson's, then you will love this book.  It is a honest and open story of two young people struggling toward faith in God, and toward one another.  If you are not familiar with the Robertsons, then this should be a great introduction to an amazing American family.  I hope you will add this great book to your library.
I was provided a complimentary copy of this title through the booklook bloggers review program, in order to provide this review.

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