Faith Blum

Be Thou My Vision

A spinster wanting something different…

Anna Stuart was comfortable with her life until the letter came. The letter shatters all the routines, comfort, and enjoyment of simply taking care of her father and older brother. As she starts to go to church—against her father’s wishes—she finds a new meaning for her life, but she wants more.

Two motherless boys…

Then she meets John and James and discovers a new purpose to her life. She offers to help their father and enjoys the challenge.

One rumor that could destroy it all.

A pastor should never be more careful who he keeps company with. Can Anna and those around her see the true vision they need from God? Or will the rumors destroy all her happiness? Again.

Chapter 1

I walked home with fear and excitement in my heart. The letter seemed to burn a hole through my pocket. Oh how I wished I could tear it open right now and read what my little brother had to say. It had been almost seven years since his fourteenth birthday—the day he left—and this was the first letter we had received from him since.

For the first time in years, I felt like running all the way home. But even an old maid like me wasn’t supposed to run lest I be labeled a “batty old maid”. I rolled my eyes at the thought. Of course, I was already considered batty since I didn’t go to church and I barely socialized with folks.

“What is wrong with being batty anyway?” I mumbled to myself. Out loud. Good gracious! It was a good thing no one else used this road. The number of times I could have been caught talking to myself would be rather embarrassing.

Taking a quick look around, I saw I was near the fields where Da and Caleb were working. I picked up my pace. “Caleb! Da! We have a letter from Jed!” I waved the letter at them. Caleb looked up from his work with a grin a mile wide. He was like that—almost always happy-go-lucky no matter what happened. I wished I could be that way. Da glanced toward me before getting back to his work. He wasn’t one to show much emotion, especially when it came to Jed.

I strode to the house in a rather unladylike fashion—who would see it anyway, much less care? I put away my purchases and had started to look around the living room to figure out what to do next when Caleb and Da clomped into the kitchen. I smiled with satisfaction. Caleb had convinced Da to come in and get the letter reading over with. Good!

As I took the letter out of my apron pocket, I walked through the doorway into the kitchen. Caleb looked at me with anticipation written all over his face. He fiddled with his hands—clenching and unclenching, gripping and ungripping them—like he always did when nervous about something. Da kept his eyes glued to the wall, trying to pretend he didn’t care what Jed had to say. I knew better. He did care in his own way, if for no other reason than because he was curious about what Jed had been doing the last seven years.

Caleb was the first to speak. “What’s it say, Anna?”

I looked to Da for permission to read. He gave a curt nod and I tore the envelope open. It held two different letters. One was written by a man I did not know and I chose to set it aside in favor of Jed’s letter. Jed’s familiar handwriting beckoned to me from the paper. His handwriting was still the same as when he was a child, scrawling all over the page. The paper had an almost Jed-like smell to it. I swallowed hard before my emotions got the better of me.

The letter was lengthy by his standards. Even as a boy, he had never been wordy about anything.

The paper crinkled as I unfolded it with care. I took a shaky breath before beginning to read.

 

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