Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Staci Stallings Waits 20 Years to Share One of Her Best!

Finally on the plane, Jenna slipped the headphones over her ears and closed her eyes. She had never been a big fan of flying. That was why she and Jeff had gone to Colorado on their honeymoon. He had tried so hard to talk her into going to the Bahamas, but she wouldn’t budge—no flying, no way. The grudging compromise had been Colorado. However, she recalled with a smile, it wouldn’t have mattered where they were as they hadn’t seen much of anything for the week other than the inside of the cottage where they had stayed and each other. The opening strains of St. Elmo’s Fire poured over her like rain, and she settled in for the three-hour flight...
“Flight 259 to Newark, now boarding at Gate G-12.” Jenna gathered her things up once again, fighting the exhaustion with everything in her. One more flight and she would be in New Jersey—far, far away from Texas. If she could just get there, surely everything would be better. She glanced out the window once again, and apprehension rose in her. The cold January rain outside zigged and zagged down the windows in crazy patterns. This was something she hadn’t counted on. Flying was bad enough, but flying in the rain was worse. Thank goodness it wasn’t snow. Her courage was harder to gather up than her luggage. It was all she could do to keep her eyes from wandering back to that window—back to the dismal gray scene outside. “God, just get me to Newark…”
“Here.” With no further thought, Jenna jumped to her feet and yanked her purse up from the floor. “You can have my seat.” “Oh, no, we couldn’t.” The young man shook his head even as his eyes pleaded with her not to rescind the offer. “No, no, I insist.” She smiled kindly. “You two should sit together.” “Are you sure you don’t mind?” the young woman asked, her eyes spilling gratefulness everywhere. “No, of course not.” Jenna moved out into the aisle so they could slip in front of her. “We really appreciate this,” the young man said. “It’s her first time to fly...”
“Is this seat taken?” The man who sat by the window with his arm around the child looked up, and pools of clear blue gazed out from under the tumble of disheveled blond hair. “What? Oh. Uh. No. No.” Jenna wasted no time getting into the seat. She pushed her purse under the seat ahead of them. The flight attendant requested that seatbelts and tray tables be readied for take-off. But as Jenna reached for hers, there was an un-Godly scream from right next to her. Instinctively she put her hand out to sooth the child. “Shhh, it’s okay, sweetheart,” she said without thinking. Suddenly she stopped and looked up in embarrassment. He was staring at her over the child’s head. Nothing moved. All she could see were the incredible blue eyes gazing right through her soul.
~~~


You might say Jenna was running away from home when she left for New Jersey, without even letting her friend know she was coming... She and her mother had still another fight and Jenna was angry enough to go ahead with her plans...

Even then she began to have "issues" getting a plane and moving on...It 's hard not to think of this story as a "God incident" while there were hundreds of other people who died in the crash of Flight 259. Still, it seemed like fate had a hand in ensuring that Jenna and Scott met on that flight... She had missed her first flight, had to change planes on an alternative flight and then willingly gave up her seat on 259 so that a honeymooning couple could sit together... She found the only seat available and sat down to meet Scott and his son... Scott later admits that it was love at first sight, but Jenna had gone through much just a short time ago and, initially, knew only that she was attracted to him, but that his little son gained the majority of her attention...

And then something hit the plane after they'd been flying for some time... But it had been time enough that, when, the plane was going down, all Jenna could think about was saving the little boy, Lane, and after she had passed him on to another rescuer, she once again went back to try to save Scott...

There was nothing that could have stopped her...Never again would she only watch in horror as loved ones were taken from her...This time, she was able to at least try to save both of her new friends...

And she did...

This is such a wonderful story of two strangers, who soon both loved a little boy who wanted nothing more than to be with those he loved...

This was Stallings first try at Christian contemporary romance and I believe, as do many other readers who could not forget the story, that it was meant to be told, to be shared... This is a book that once I started reading, I didn't want to stop, although finally, turning out the lights at 3 a.m. only to get up the next day to finish it. It's a page-turner, but a lovely story forces the need to move forward to see what happens...

Jenna had lost three beloved family members in a car accident. Since then she had been living with her mother who had grown dependent on her, wanting her to share her life, while at the same time, Jenna was 29, had never been that close to her mother who was, difficult, to say the least. And she knew it was time to try to move on. It would not happen while her mother was determined to dominate both of their lives...

Of the hundreds on Flight 259, less than 10 were saved. Scott and Lane would not have lived if it had not been for Jenna. Scott had been knocked out and also trapped but he was awake enough to seek Jenna's help to save his son... 

There is a delightful story of another survivor. But he had been on the bridge into which the plane had dropped... he had seen the plane coming and rammed his foot on the gas to clear the bridge before his car, too, would fall into the water... But once out of his car, the first thing he felt he had to do was jump into the river and swim out to find survivors. He had taken Lane out of Jenna's arms, thinking to give her more strength... When he saw her turn around to go back... Well, his life was changed from that moment...

The response to this story is emotion-packed. There is no way that readers do not begin to live through the lives of these three survivors as they come to heal after the accident, and get to know each other even more... The only sign of God is through Jenna's anger as she tries to understand the loss of her family...and then to come close to possibly losing the "potential" of a future as she struggled, dealing with her feelings of betrayal to the ones she had first committed her life to... 

When something goes wrong in our lives, many times we cry out in not being able to understand. Sometimes we become angry, even with God... But I have learned, as this story confirms, when one plan dissolves, perhaps one we chose for ourselves, if we open ourselves, there might just be another plan that He has faithfully arranged for those who seek him...

This is a wonderful story to read right now, as we watch and see the many lives being saved as nature has attacked those living in Texas this time... Sometimes disasters happen and there is no way to understand...But if we allow Him to be part of our lives, there is sure to be another path to travel... For some of you, this will be a must-read... I loved it and was energized and renewed watching God in action, even during a disaster...
Highly recommended...


GABixlerReviews