Mary, Chosen of God
By Diana Wallis Taylor
Whitaker House, 2016
“Blessed are you, Mary, chosen of God.”
Mary is ordinary girl from Nazareth. She helps her mother with household chores, she daydreams about a handsome carpenter’s son named Joseph, and at night she lies on the roof and contemplates the stars.
But one evening, a heavenly visitor comes with unexpected news—and her life is changed forever.
Experience the life of the Messiah from the perspective of his mother, who must place her trust and obedience in Adonai, the Most High, as he fulfills centuries of prophecy in the middle of her daily life. Walk with Mary as she witnesses Yeshua grow, mature, minister, and even be crucified—and then raised again, to the kindling of her new faith.
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In Mary, Chosen of God, Diana Wallis Taylor takes us from Mary and Joseph’s courtship days through Pentecost, breathing life into a familiar and beloved story. This is really a factual account that conveys the humanity of Mary, and I found the narrative informative and very touching in several places. It’s not a fast-paced or deep read, but one that made me think.
I especially enjoyed the historical detail as Diana writes about the Jewish culture and lifestyle – festivals, traditions, travel, food, etc. Her writing is easy to follow and pulls you into the setting. I also found the Scriptural accuracy impressive … that rather than being a prostitute, Mary Magdalene was a woman who had been freed from seven demons; the believers on Pentecost speaking in actual languages foreign to them; James, the brother of Jesus, becoming a believer and church leader; and the apostles baptizing new followers in the cleansing pools of Jerusalem.
But the focus is on Mary, and I’ve got to say that I love the cover. It reflects Mary’s vulnerability and I can’t get it out of my mind. The narrative made me realize again how simple, yet strong, Mary’s faith was … her familiarity and intimacy with God, reflected in the salutation of her prayers, Oh God Who Sees Me … her knowledge of the Old Testament Scriptures, leading to a trust in God’s plan and protection … the importance she placed on obedience. Oh, to be more like Mary!
It was interesting to follow Mary’s thoughts over the years as the full meaning of the angel’s announcement became clear, beginning with the old man’s words in the Temple: “You will feel the pain of a sword thrust through you…”
I enjoyed Mary, Chosen of God overall and am glad I had the opportunity to read it. Recommended.
I received this book free of charge from Celebrate Lit.
Diana Wallis Taylor has written eight biblical novels, including Mary, Chosen of God, Martha, Journey to the Well, Mary Magdalene, Claudia, Wife of Pontius Pilate, and Ruth, Mother of Kings. Well-known in the Christian book industry for her biblical fiction, her most recent five books have received over 3,000 ratings on Goodreads.
Taylor is a former San Diego Christian Writer’s Guild’s “Writer of the Year” and her biblical novels have earned her a variety of awards. Diana lives in San Diego with her husband, Frank. They have six grown children and ten grandchildren.
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To celebrate her tour, Diana is giving away a gift basket that includes Mary, Ruth, Whitaker House’s study Bible, and The Lord is my Shepherd candle from Abba Anointing Oil!