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I have been an avid reader from as early as I can remember. Since becoming a Christian in my early 20s, my passion for reading led to specifically Christian fiction and this has developed into reviewing them on this blog. I love reading new author's novels or author's who have not had many reviews or exposure and giving them much needed encouragement where appropriate.   
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Monday, 17 February 2014

God Inside The Fire: An Amazing True Story by Greg Stelley


Joni is no stranger to miracles. Her prayers and even her dreams have a habit of coming true. Her husband is regularly amazed by her strong faith and her premonitions: "I had a dream, Greg. There's going to be a fire. I saw Kathy and Frank in the middle of it." Frank Scalari is a physicist. Frank, Kathy, and their four children, along with their horses, goats, and chickens, have just moved onto their new five acre ranch high in the Cuyamaca Mountains, 60 miles northeast of San Diego. On October 25th, 2003, the ravenous Cedar Fire sweeps down into San Diego on strong Santa Ana winds. Two days later the monstrous thirty-mile-long firestorm reverses course and heads back to the Cuyamaca Mountains.

Joni assures Kathy, her ever-skeptical best friend, that she is praying for her property and that: "Nothing is too hard for God! Not even this terrible firestorm!" But neither Kathy nor Frank believes in the supernatural. GOD INSIDE THE FIRE is a true life page-turner of epic proportions. As the 427-square-mile Cedar Fire takes direct aim at the Scalari family's ranch, Joni, and Danielle, her 9-year-old daughter, each pray for a miracle. They're praying for more than just a horse ranch—they're praying to open their friends' hearts and minds to the reality of God. The impossibilities within this amazing true story will astound you. If you look, you just may find...GOD INSIDE THE FIRE.


Review: 


When a book, whether fiction of non fiction, impacts your life on one level or many levels, then you are blessed and made a better person. This is what the author, Greg Stelley has achieved in this true account of one of America's most devastating fires and the impact it had on the community, and the miracle that followed. 


This has impacted me greatly and challenged my attitude towards my relationship with God and my family.

As a first time writer, Stelley writes well and describes the fire, its pace, ferocity and devastation just as well. From this angle, this books reads like a novel. I love fiction so I was in my element here. He has done every reader, himself and his family and the family, Frank and Kathy, at the centre of this true account justice by portraying them as they are, real people and as true to how they are as real people and not as two dimensional as some characters are portrayed in fictional stories. This adds so much credibility to himself as an author but also to the main characters and the true account of this devastating fire and miracle that occurred as a result of the faith expressed by the Stelley family. 

I agree with the author that this story needed to be told. What happened to Frank and Kathy's property defies logical, scientific and rational explanation. Everything points to the supernatural. When you read the specifics of the prayer that Danielle, Juliette and Joni prayed and then to see that in reality, after the fire, this evidenced exactly as prayed, is truly wonderful. For Christians, this is not surprising as to the Author of this miracle. To those who do not know God in a personal way, it will be used by God as a great witness and example of who He is, what He is capable of in a wonderful and benevolent way and to lead those seeking purpose and meaning to why they exist, to Him. 

I applaud Greg Stelley in writing this to honour and give God the glory for what He has done for Frank and Kathy. I can say this also for any Christian to be challenged in their faith and to take God out of the boxes we enclose Him in due to our own failings, fallen and sinful nature and use what God has done in this account to challenge us to see Him in a deeper way with a deeper faith. 

I was very scared at reading the fire account and the experiences the victims went through. I got anxious, frustrated, angry and cried at those accounts. I also cried, but with tears of joy, at the miracle that unfolded after the fire. I was rejoicing in this wonderful God I love and follow! It is really hard being on a train commuting to work and trying to conceal the fact that you are crying!! I got some very strange looks for fellow commuters!! 

This is a wonderful blessing of a true story, a great message from a wonderful God. Faith, hope, redemption, supernatural power from a supernatural God who will do anything to show who He is, no matter where you are, even in the most devastating and horrible circumstance anyone could be in. 

Highly Recommended.

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