I have challenge myself to finish read this 5 book within 24hours on the last two days and I accomplish it, and thinking wanna write it into a blog as well as part of my reading journal journey. Here it go...All of these 5 book is a historical fiction novel story of young Christian Huguenots with absolute faith. 

After John's mother died, Uncle Louis and Aunt Mary were taking care of him. His father had been sent to the galleys and his little sister Manette to Paris by his own uncle (Uncle Francis). Uncle Francis who was the local priest also wanted to send John to cloister, John decided to flee to Holland, the land of freedom. However, he did not want to forget about his little sister and thus he undertook the difficult and dangerous job to free her also. After many trial and adventure they arrive in Holland. 

John, the hero of this historical fiction, is a Huguenot teenager who has escape the vicious persecution in France by fleeing to The Netherlands. He now return to the dreaded country with a secret mission from the Dutch government. During his journey through France, he encounters one precarious situation after another as he attempts to fulfill his own personal mission of liberating his beloved father. 

Four orphaned children, three brothers and one sister, set out together on a journey to leave France and to reach the French sea coast to catch a ship to Amsterdam. Because the year is 1686, however, and the children profess to be Huguenots, their youthful days are more often than not filled with adventure and fear.
    Force at an early age to consider the gravity of life and death, the children forge a bond of loyalty that goes beyond family ties. Their unfaltering trust in God provides with wonderful role model of just what is means to totally give up everything for one's faith. 

The Marquis la Force along his wife and daughter are driven into exile to England. Making a life in a country the complete opposite of France is hard on the La Force family, especially when they hear that their son and brother Louis, still in France, is to educated in the Roman Catholic religion. Meanwhile Adele la Force is having trouble coping with poverty and her step-mother. This is a story of the Lord strengthening this Huguenot family and keeping them together in spite of persecution and poverty.

Gaspard, a French Huguenot boy, was taken in by a group of outlaws, smugglars of salt. After several adventures he met the famous Huguenot pastor, Claude Brousson. Then the main story. Skillfully the author, intertwined the historical facts about Brousson with fictional account of Gaspard and Tardiff.   

>>All of these historical fiction book is well written and this novel is heartily recommended.

Epilogue (History of The Church Reformation in France)

The Protestant in France were named Huguenots. The true meaning of this name is not certain, but the word is probably derived from a word that means Covenanters. The embattled history of the Huguenots began with Luther posting his Ninety-Five These to the door of the cathedral of W├╝rttemberg in 1517, challenging the Catholic church and sparkling off what was to become the Protestant religion. But there was generally a move towards changing the way Bible was interpreted which had been facilitated by the invention of the printing press (allowing the poor to read the Bible themselves). The gospel spread fast.

In France, people began to question the established Church. In cooperation with the French Kings, the mighty Roman Catholic Church tried it utmost to stop the progress of the Reformation using blatant persecutions. The first French martyr, an Augustinian monk, named Jean Valliers, was burned alive at the stake in Paris in 1523. It was the the start of severe persecution in which thousand and thousand of Christians, men and women, children and old men, laymen and clergy were tortured and burned alive. Many historical source tell of their faithful adherence to the Lord Jesus Christ.

The suffering in France was borne with Psalm singing. The death of the martyrs was a singing death; they sang while being burned alive. The Psalms of these Christian witnesses, sung in smoke and fire, become known. Everybody began to sing them. Even in Paris one day three or four thousand people sang them in public despite the rage of the king.

The persecutions did not stop the progress of the Gospel. Less than thirty years after the death of the first martyr the Huguenot Church had nearly  half a million members and few years later at least forty percent of the total French population were Huguenots.

The first synod met in Paris in 1559. Obviously, they had to meet in secret because during those times, the Kings Francis I (1515-1547) and Henry II (1547-1550) tried to liquidate Church. In spite of these difficulties, the synod was able to complete a heavy and important workload. It agreed upon a creed and established rules for governing the church, all based on Calvinistic, Biblical principles. 

During this period a large number of nobles joined the Huguenot Church. Their leader was the well-known Caspard de Coligny. They were opposed by the Romanist nobles and their leader, De Guise. King Charles IX (1560-1574), who was wholly under the influence of his mother, Catherine de Medici, sided with the Romanists. 

The struggle between these two parties came to an end with the bloody St. Bartholomew's night (Aug. 23-24, 1572). During that night and the next few days more than thirty thousand Huguenots were murdered, including De Coligny.

Until 1589, France was ravaged by civil war, murder and persecution. During that year, the protestant leader King Henry IV made a compromise; he became a Roman Catholic convert, and was acknowledged as France's legal king by both parties. His main goal was then to maintain peace in his country, and so he gave special privileges to the Huguenots in the Edict of Nantes (1598). It allowed a kind of freedom of religion unknown in the western world, except in The Netherlands. The Huguenots were allowed to practice their religion in a certain number of cities, and they were recognized - to a certain extent - as an armed political party. In additional, they received some fortified towns, like the harbor town of La Rochelle. 

However, these special privileges quickly became a threat to the very existence of nation because the Huguenots were allowed to form their own state inside the nation. Cardinal Richelieu (1585-1642), then Prime Minister, understood this well. Gradually he cancel all privileges and conquered the fortified cities of the Huguenots.

Severe persecution of the Huguenots resumed during the reign of Louis XIV, the Sun King (1643-1715), because he wanted to be an absolute monarch. He expected to achieve his goal by allowing only one church in France, the Roman Catholic Church. He followed the recommendations of his confessor, the notorious Pere La Chaise, and support any action that would result in the Huguenots returning to the Roman Church, including persecution, bribery, and murder. 

The life of the Huguenots became unbearable after the revocation of the Edict of Nantes, and many of them tried to leave France. King Louis, who knew that the Huguenots were most diligent and hard working subjects, did not want them to leave and used his soldiers to turn them back at the borders. And this 5 historical fiction book story took place during those time.

In spite of the soldiers, approximately one-half million Huguenots succeeded in their flight. They were supported by the Christians in Switzerland, England, The Netherlands, and Brandenburg. 

In the famous war of the Camisards (1702-1704), the Huguenots in a mountains country of southern France called the Cevennes, tried to defend their lives. They are known as Camisards because they often wore a shirt (camisole) over their clothes during nightly attacks. Their courage and discipline were unrivalled. Although their army consisted of fewer than two thousand five hundred soldiers, a French army of twenty thousand men with famous generals and supported by fifty-two battalions of recruits could barely subdue them.

After this war, the Reformed Church in France appeared to be completely liquidated. However, after a few years a revival occurred and although the persecution continued, it was less bloody than before. At last, in 1790, the Huguenots were given freedom of religion. Even now the French Reformed Church is still active in its mission work, but continues to be very small.

Moral of the story (use Bible verse to uphold the topic) - The main point is "Brotherly Love";
1 John 4:7: let us love one another: for love is of God; 1 John 4:12: No man hath beheld God at any time: if we love one anotherGod abideth in us, and his love is perfected in us.

God has created every human being in His image, which means that we are created to love. We are created to need love and we are created to give love. Most people do not know what love is. As people become more “world focused” they seem to develop a distorted view about what love is.

The Bible tells us that “God is Love”, and the Bible also says that God is Spirit, that means true Love is a Spirit, the Holy Spirit. But of course there are counterfeit forms of what people call love.

The fruits of the Holy Spirit describe true Love(Galatians 5:22-25) But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, {23} gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law. {24} And those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. {25} If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit. The first fruit of the Spirit is Love and all of the other fruits are characteristics of Love.

Love is more than a feeling, it is more than an experience, it is the manifested presence of God, the glory of God. Remember God is Love, so when you experience true Love you are experiencing God’s glorious presence. Notice the second fruit is joy, love is the ultimate joy that can be experienced. (Psalms 16:11) You will show me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.

The third fruit listed is peace. Just as fear is a spirit, so also Love is a Spirit of power and peace. (2 Timothy 1:7) For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind. (Ephesians 6:23) Peace to the brethren, and love with faith, from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. (2 Corinthians 13:11) Finally, brethren, farewell. Become complete. Be of good comfort, be of one mind, live in peace; and the God of love and peace will be with you.

The other six fruits of the Spirit all have to do with actions of Love and the power of Love. All of the fruits of the Spirit are the manifestations of the Holy Spirit, which is the manifestation of God’s love in our own life.

Moses asked God to show him His glory. When God revealed His glory to Moses He also revealed His character, His Love. (Exodus 33:18-19) And he said, “Please, show me Your glory.” {19} Then He said, “I will make all My goodness pass before you, and I will proclaim the name of the LORD before you. I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion.” (Exodus 34:6) And the LORD passed before him and proclaimed, “The LORD, the LORD God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abounding in goodness and truth, The word merciful in verse 6 means, “to be full of compassion”. We know that God is Love and that He is full of compassion. This revelation of who God is, also reveals who Love is, and what the glory of God is. The glory of God is the manifestation and revelation of His Love to man.

The Bible is very clear that we are to love God more than our own life and to love people as we love our selves. (Matthew 22:37-40) Jesus said to him, ” ‘You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ {38} “This is the first and great commandment. {39} “And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ {40} “On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets.” Love is the summary of all that God wants from us, and all that God wants us to be. The whole Bible is God’s communication to man to tell us about the God who is Love, and what Love is and is not.

When we love God we will obey His commandments. (1 John 5:3) For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments. And His commandments are not burdensome. When we love God His commandments are not a burden to us they are a joy. This kind of love is not natural, it is not from us, it is a gift from God called the Holy Spirit. God’s Holy Spirit in us causes us to not only want to obey God but also to delight in doing so from our very heart. David wrote many times verses such as this, (Psalms 40:8) I delight to do Your will, O my God, And Your law is within my heart.”

Jesus commands us to live in His love, which is demonstrated by obedience to Him on the outside, and on the inside we are full of joy. (John 15:9-14) “As the Father loved Me, I also have loved you; abide in My love. {10} “If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love, just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love. {11} “These things I have spoken to you, that My joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full. {12} “This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. {13} “Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends. {14} “You are My friends if you do whatever I command you.

There is only one thing that you have which you can give to God that will glorify Him, that is our life. By crucify our flesh. Paul’s words in Galatians 5:24: “Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.” In this verse, it’s clear that crucifying the flesh is not something done to the believer, but by the believer: “Those who belong to Christ have crucified the flesh.” The “flesh” that must be crucified is the sin principle that exists in our fallen human nature. In this world we live in fleshly bodies, and the body, being weak (Mark 14:38), is the gateway to sin. Our bodies, though not sinful in themselves, naturally crave comfort and pleasure, and they too often succumb to temptation, producing the works of the flesh (Galatians 5:19–21). Sin entrenches itself in the flesh, which becomes dominated by iniquity of all kinds. It is the sinful passions and wayward deeds of the flesh that Christians must crucify. In other places, Paul speaks of a crucifixion that happens to the believer through his or her union with Jesus Christ: “I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me” (Galatians 2:20; see also Romans 6:6). But in Galatians 5:24, it is the believer who has taken action. Crucify the flesh describes a deliberate putting to death of the old sin naturePaul’s instruction was inspired by Jesus Christ Himself, who said, “If anyone wants to follow after me, let him deny himself, take up his cross, and follow me” (Mark 8:34)Believers are to take their old sin nature and, figuratively speaking, nail it to the cross. We crucify the flesh through repentance of sin—by turning our backs on the old way of life, by saying no to selfish and sinful passions, and by utterly renouncing the flesh: “Do not let any part of your body become an instrument of evil to serve sin. Instead, give yourselves completely to God, for you were dead, but now you have new life. So use your whole body as an instrument to do what is right for the glory of God” (Romans 6:13.

But when you give yourself fully to Him, seeking to know Him and do His will with your whole heart, mind, soul, and strength; then He will glorify you. As we come to know and experience the revelation of God’s Love by looking unto Him we are transformed from glory to glory. (2 Corinthians 3:18) But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord.

Paul tells us that through knowing Christ’s Love that we can be filled with all the fullness of God. (Ephesians 3:14-21) For this reason I bow my knees to the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, {15} from whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named, {16} that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might through His Spirit in the inner man, {17} that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love, {18} may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and depth and height; {19} to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. {20} Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, {21} to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen.

In verse 19 the passage reads “to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge”, which seems to be a contradiction, but there are two different words used in the original Greek. The first word “to know”, means an intimate knowing, to perceive, to feel, to experience, the word is even used in the way that a man knows a woman. This is a heart-felt intimate knowledge. The second word “which passes knowledge” means head knowledge, or science. God’s Love is beyond human understanding, it is only spiritually discerned because it is the manifested presence of the Holy Spirit.

In verse 18 the phrase “may be able to comprehend” is interesting, the word comprehend is the Greek word katalambano, which means to take eagerly, seize, possess, apprehend, attain, come upon, find, obtain, perceive, overtake. We are to eagerly seek and possess with all the saints what is the width and length and depth and height of knowing the love of Christ which is beyond head-knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.

(1 John 4:19) We love Him because He first loved us. Notice in the passage above, Ephesians 3:14-21, the progression of events. First Paul prays that according to the riches of His glory, the glory of God is God’s Love revealed to man. This must take place first because God’s Love must be revealed to us first so that we can love Him. Second is the work of the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Love, strengthened with might through His Spirit in the inner man. Then we are able to receive Christ into our hearts through faith, which grows out of Love. Faith comes from Love, and grows as the heart-knowledge of God’s Love grows.

As we grow in intimate knowledge of the Love of Christ we are filled with all the fullness of God. Because Christ is the greatest revelation of God’s Love, and the greatest manifestation of God’s glory to man. (2 Corinthians 4:6-7) For it is the God who commanded light to shine out of darkness, who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. {7} But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellence of the power may be of God and not of us.

God is love, and he who abides in love abides in God, and God in him. (1 John 4:12-19) No one has seen God at any time. If we love one another, God abides in us, and His love has been perfected in us. {13} By this we know that we abide in Him, and He in us, because He has given us of His Spirit. {14} And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent the Son as Savior of the world. {15} Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God. {16} And we have known and believed the love that God has for us. God is love, and he who abides in love abides in God, and God in him. {17} Love has been perfected among us in this: that we may have boldness in the day of judgment; because as He is, so are we in this world. {18} There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love. {19} We love Him because He first loved us. (Mark 12:30) ‘And you shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.’ This is the first commandment.

For many people the world is a dark, lonely, and loveless place. As Christians we have the answers people are longing for. We must let the glory of God’s Love shine through us to bring light, and love to hurting people. (Isaiah 60:1-2) Arise, shine; For your light has come! And the glory of the LORD is risen upon you. {2} For behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, And deep darkness the people; But the LORD will arise over you, And His glory will be seen upon you. (Matthew 5:14-16) “You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. {15} “Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. {16} “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.

Love is the highest calling and the greatest relationship with God. (Colossians 3:14) But above all these things put on love, which is the bond of perfection. (Ephesians 5:1-2) Therefore be imitators of God as dear children. {2} And walk in love, as Christ also has loved us and given Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling aroma. (Jude 1:20-21 NKJV) But you, beloved, building yourselves up on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Spirit, {21} keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life.