Saturday, December 24, 2016

A Prelude to Christmas: HIStory as told by Amber Schamel

We made it to Christmas Eve! Are you looking forward to Christmas Day? 

Today is the last official day of "A Prelude to Christmas" but there is a very special treat in store for you tomorrow. But for now, let's focus on today and welcome our special guest Amber Schamel! She's here to share an excerpt of her story, The Swaddling Clothes. Enjoy!

Review of Amber Schamel’s book written by Amber McCalister:

The Swaddling Clothes is a surprisingly sweet treasure that deftly weaves fiction and Scripture to create a compelling tale of love, hope, and promise. This story follows the tumultuous years from King David to the birth of Jesus Christ. We get a firsthand look at the heartbreak and despair that Israel finds itself in throughout this time. It’s not a history fill of ease and peace, but it is a time full of hope and humility. God uses this time to bring Israel back to Him. He chastises His people because He loves them, and He wants their hearts to turn back to Him in sincerity and love.

The idea that something as insignificant as swaddling clothes can be passed down from King Solomon to Jesus Christ is mind-boggling and yet something that I could see God using as a way to bind His people to Him in hope and promise. While this story is a work of fiction, its inception and execution is brilliant. Watching as this cloth is handed down through the generations of kings almost lost and its meaning all but forgotten, is both heartbreaking and beautiful. The research and detail put into this story is amazing and not without great passion and heart from the author.

I love the up close and personal feel that we receive from reading this amazing story. You feel like you are invading very private moments in the lives of significant people. This new feel of intimacy makes these stories come alive for me. I get so much more from a story if I can read it on a personal level. After all, we were created to be intimate beings in constant communication with the Creator of the Universe. That is a part of our nature that we can’t erase or escape from no matter what we do.

Amber Schamel knows how to reach down deep and touch your heart. With what seems like little effort, she is able to make you feel like you are sitting next to these amazing people of God and discover that there is a way that we can relate to them on some level. They were real people who feared, hoped, loved, and dreamed just like we all do. We are all vessels that God wants to use for His purpose, but the choice is ours to allow Him to use us. I pray that you will allow Him to use you for a greater purpose than you can ever imagine. If God can use Rahab, Ruth, and Mary to prove that His love can reach this far down from the Heavens, then why can’t he use us?

Excerpt from Chapter One of 
The Swaddling Clothes:

Maacah pressed her back against an olive trunk. Had she really heard right? All expected this new, young wife of David’s would soon be with child, but how could the child of a commoner—a wife acquired through murder and iniquity—possibly be named the successor to the throne above her own son? Absalom was a beautiful child, beloved of all who knew him, third born, and of royal blood. What disgrace and insolence for David to consider this woman’s son over Absalom. No, this could never be.

She peeked out from behind the tree as David led Bathsheba toward the palace. “Something must be done. That woman’s son will never reign over Absalom.”

Her thoughts raced like wild stallions as she darted toward her son’s chambers. She didn’t know how, but she would blight this plan to usurp Absalom’s throne. Starting with the swaddling clothes.


Absalom’s resolute step carried him swiftly toward the court. His long tresses, curly like his father’s, bounced against his broad shoulders. Could what Mother said be the truth? He refused to believe his father would plan to make Bathsheba’s child his heir. For twenty years he had worked to become his father’s favorite. She must have heard wrong. She did say she was a distance away as they spoke. He rounded the corner and entered the hall adjoining the throne room. A group of scribes stood in his way.

“You go in first. You’re the one who has served the king the longest.”

“He threw us out moments ago. Now he wants us back?”

Absalom rolled his eyes and brushed past them.

“I am going to be an abba! Blessed be the name of the Lord.”

Absalom froze. The words unmistakably shouted in the king’s voice. His father’s voice.

He barely noticed the scribes bumping into him as they scurried through the doorway into the throne room. What could he mean by that? Was he not an abba already? Even with six sons?

Regaining his senses, Absalom peered around the door left ajar in the rush. King David’s chest swelled. His finger extended toward where Absalom stood obscured by the door.

“Let it be written and posted throughout every city in the land of Israel: every craftsman skillful in the art of weaving is summoned to the palace in Jerusalem. The king and queen desire to fashion swaddling clothes for the prince of the house of David. The cloths will be of the finest thread, created from the best of every land. The craftsman selected will be paid a royal wage. A decree from David, king of Israel.”

Swaddling clothes of the finest? Crafted from every land? Bile rose in Absalom’s throat. His mother had been right. His own father was conspiring against his reign, in complete disregard of his heritage. He could not allow this. Something must be done. Something—but what?

Author bio: 
Author of over half a dozen books, Amber Schamel writes riveting stories that bring HIStory to life. 

She has a passion for travel, history, books and her Savior. This combination results in what her readers call "historical fiction at its finest". 

She lives in Colorado and spends half her time volunteering in the Ozarks.
Buy Amber's book:
Amazon ~ Barnes and Noble
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