Great teen novels include The Olive Tree Covering. Redemption is the title of the fifteenth chapter of great teen novels.
It was late afternoon and I buttoned my jacket as I walked with Mike out into the crisp autumn air. Mike put his arm around my shoulder to comfort me after he noticed that I wiped away my tears with my handkerchief. Each step reminded me of the past conservations I had with my father.
My heart pounded and my temples felt like they were going to explode. I remembered my father’s words to stay away from anything having to do with Jesus or the cross. As I clenched my fists, my stomach muscles tightened and I silently cried out to God through my tears. Why couldn’t I have a similar relationship with my own earthly father?
The back of my legs ached from pressing down hard on the pavement as I ambled past people emerging from the buildings. There were a few empty tables and chairs in front of a sandwich shop. Breathing heavily and feeling limp and worn out like a soaking wet worn out dishrag I collapsed into one of the chairs. Without smiling, Mike sat down in the chair across from me, pulled out a small Bible from his pocket, and read a passage aloud.
Mike reads scripture to Tamara in this one of great teen novels.
“Then the Lord will go out and fight against those nations, as he fights in the day of battle. On that day his feet will stand on the Mount of Olives…” Mike closed the small book and looked up at me.
“What book and passage is that?”
“Zechariah 14:3-4. It relates the day that the Lord will redeem the dead among his people on Mount Olives and call them back to him.”
“Wow, that’s deep. I must be missing something here. What does that have to do with me?” My hand brushed against Mike’s as I leaned forward to pull the book closer to me.
“It means that because you believe in Jesus, He will be with you forever. He loves you as much as He loves His Father.” Mike turned the book around towards me and pointed to the passage he had finished reading.
“So? My father still doesn’t believe.” I snatched the book out of Mike’s hands and closed it.
It didn’t seem possible to me that my father would change his mind about my new faith in Jesus. Was it possible that Jesus could also love my father even thought my father rejected Him? I remembered seeing a Valentine’s Day card with a heart pierced by a broken arrow. Maybe I was like that broken heart, hurt and wounded by my father’s angry words.
“He may one day, Tamara. You have to have faith and believe in the power of the Holy Spirit to lead your dad to faith in Jesus Christ.” Mike held my hand in his large, strong ones.
In this one of great teen novels it's Tamara's turn to give Mike some advice.
“The Holy Spirit? Is He the one who told you to punch Larry in the nose at school?”
“Um,” Mike brushed his hair back with his fingers. “The Holy Spirit wasn’t guiding me that time. I didn’t like the way Larry was treating you. I was seething inside like a volcano waiting to erupt and I couldn’t stop myself. I didn’t listen to the Holy Spirit.”
“Doesn’t Jesus teach us to love our enemies and turn our cheeks when we get hurt?” I reached across the table with my right hand and grabbed Mike’s arm.
“He does. I lost control.” Mike held my hand with both of his and looked right at me. I couldn’t resist looking into his hazel eyes filled with hope.
“Yeah, your lack of control turned into detention.” I pulled my hand away from his grasping hands and covered my mouth trying to stifle a few giggles.
“I’m still learning to follow Jesus, like you.”
Many great teen novels include romance between the main characters.
Mike laughed with me as he pushed his chair back from the table. He stood up and walked over to my chair. He pulled me up out of my seat. I didn’t resist as I looked into his hazel eyes as if I was engrossed in a novel I couldn’t put down. He kissed me with his moist, warm lips and I melted into the warmth of his body.
When I was little, I would lie on my back, look up at the clouds on a warm, summer day, and wonder what it would be like to be transported there. Now I knew. I climbed higher and higher reaching with my hands into the soft cotton floating over my head. It seemed as if I would float high up in the sky with the clouds forever.
“I love you, Tamara.” Mike pulled his lips away from mine.
“We should head back.” I held Mike’s hand while we walked.
When we entered the social hall, many people had already left the celebration including Helen and her mother. My mother and another woman were cleaning off the tables and throwing out the used paper plates, cups, and table decorations. My father was busy speaking with Rabbi Mendelsohn and my brother in a corner of the room.
“Bye Tamara.” Mike kissed me on the cheek.
“See you in school.” I squeezed his hand.
My family left the synagogue shortly after Mike went home with his mother. A thick wall of uncomfortable silence permeated the interior of the car during the long, slow ride home. My stomach was upset and I craved a glass of warm milk to quell the raging fire deep in the pit of my abdomen.
At home Angel greeted me at the door and I carried her upstairs to my room. Envisioning two scenes in my mind I pulled out two large shadow boxes from my closet. The Bible verse Mike read to me earlier was the inspiration for my first shadow box display about Jesus climbing Mount Olives. I cut out miniature olive trees from construction paper and placed them in the shadow box. Next, I found a picture of Jesus, cut that out, and placed His picture among the olive trees. Remembering the story about the sacrifices of Abraham and Isaac from the synagogue readings during Rosh Hashanah I used the second shadow box to recreate the scene of Abraham preparing to sacrifice his son Isaac on Mount Moriah. It was very late after I finished making both shadow boxes and it was time for bed and night time dreams about my shadow boxes.
In this one of great teen novels the Holy Spirit is mentioned. What is the Holy Spirit?
Many great teen novels continue on to the next chapter. Read chapter sixteen here.