Xulon Press (2007)
Reviewed by Debra Gaynor for Reader Views (5/07)
Abel Adams grew up in a Christian home in a quiet town in Maryland. His Aunt Delilah predicted that hewould some day be a preacher -- little did she know the road he would take to get there. He had the advantage of a loving family, “wise counsel and educational opportunities.” He traded all that for a world of drugs, and crime.
Abel seemed to rebel from early in his childhood. He stole from his family and fought against the consequences. He befriended Yogi even though his mother warned him that “he looked like bad news.”
Following in his friend’s steps he began using drugs. The two stole a motorcycle and ran away from home, leaving a trail of crime along the way. “My parents are probably worried sick and I don’t even know why I left.” He turned himself in and his parents picked him up, but their relationship became more strained instead of better. Abel’s drug use turned to LSD and wine. He began selling to support his habit.
One day Abel met a Prophet of God. The man told Abel about Jesus and asked him to read Isaiah 53. As Abel walked about he heard the Prophet say, “Brother, you’re living in a grace period. You never know when it will run out.” Abel didn’t listen and continued down the path of destruction. From armed robbery to insurance fraud to a satanic cult, Abel was spiraling downward. Even joining the military didn’t stop Abel’s drug use.
Eventually Abel’s Aunt Delilah’s prediction came true . Abel knew that God loved him and that Jesus Christ would set him free. But the real change came in jail. Abel was going through withdrawal but it was more than that, his eyes were yellow, he was very ill. Abel was told he’d be “dead by Christmas.” He reached for his Bible and began to read, “For whosoever calls upon the name of the Lord will be saved.” “God gave Abel the gift of forgiveness and the ability to forgive others. God gave him the ability to love those who had hurt him. These two gifts – forgiveness and love – were his salvation, his grace.” Abel’s life would never be the same, “Praise God, it would never be the same!”
“Grace Period” by Robert Hammond is one of those stories that you will never forget. Mr. Hammond is an extremely talented author. He has the amazing ability to pull the reader into the story. From the moment I began to read “Grace Period” I was hooked, I didn’t lay this one down until I’d read every word. I’m not sure any review can do justice to this amazing story. Abel Adams comes to life on the pages, each of us will see a bit of ourselves in the character. We don’t have to use drugs or steal things to see badly we need the saving grace of Jesus. The cover is beautifully done, darkness with a hint of light and an abstract arrow tease the reader to what they will find inside. I did find a few editing mistakes but have no other criticisms. Well-done Mr. Hammond! I highly recommend this book to everyone.