Item description for The Shepherds' Prayer: A Christmas Novel - Audio Book by Richard M. Barry & John McDonough...
Overview Santa Claus. Beautifully wrapped gifts. Eating lots of good food with family and friends. For many, that's what Christmas is all about. But the author of a new book is determined to put the emphasis back where it belongs: on the birth of Jesus and how the Lord reinvigorates the lives of those who follow Him. His book, "The Shepherds' Prayer: A Christmas Novel," does just that. Author and publisher Richard Barry based his fictional tale on the real lives of a group of men we've all heard about but typically overlook -- the shepherds to whom the angel announced the birth of Jesus. Outside of our kid's school play, most of us have never given these important Biblical characters a second thought. Yet they were the first to hear the Good News. So what happened to them after that blessed first Christmas? Richard Barry's novel seeks to answer that thought-provoking question, and in a way that makes all of us appreciate the importance of Christ's Incarnation and how the seemingly insignificant birth of one baby in an obscure corner of the Roman Empire changed the world forever. In fact, Barry places the entire Christmas story into historical context in a way that few modern novels on the subject have done. He reminds us that there is a tragic component of the story, too -- the Slaughter of the Innocents. This was when the jealous King Herod ordered the murder of all the male babies in Bethlehem in an attempt to kill the Messiah, whom he saw as a rival. In "The Shepherds' Prayer," a young man who had been orphaned in this tragic massacre returns to Bethlehem thirty years later on a quest to discover his name and heritage. Having been raised in a culture where bloodlines mean everything, he seems forever condemned to live as an outsider on the fringes of society until he discovers his true identity. His only clue is a cryptic message on a lambskin blanket about a child born in a stable in Bethlehem. Who is this mysterious child? And what could such a child have to do with his own birth and destiny? Through a providential encounter with a small band of shepherds, the young man comes to realize that his quest has little to do with his genes -- and everything to do with his soul. This is a book that has the potential to become a Christmas classic because it is one of those rare novels that the entire family can enjoy. It focuses our attention on the life-changing power of faith during this special time of the year. Yes, decorating our Christmas trees and waiti
Publishers Description For most of us, Christmas is a time of great joy, a warm and wonderful family celebration of the birth of our Savior. As we ponder the scene at the manger, however, I doubt many of us think about the impact that starry night had on those who were there. We don t often recall the slaughter of the innocents in Bethlehem and their parents cries of agony. We also probably don t consider the dramatically changed lives of those humble shepherds who heard the angel?'s good news and who heard the heavenly host singing, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, toward men of good will. How those words must have rung in their ears many years after. How that sight of the infant Messiah must have never left their imagination.These first believers are the subject of an imaginative Christmas novel by Richard M. Barry, titled The Shepherds Prayer. The book tells the story of an adopted son with a mysterious connection to the Messiah, who seeks the truth about his birth thirty years later. The man, Anam, travels to Bethlehem, where contempt is apparent on the faces of the townspeople when they hear the name Jesus. Anam also meets a band of shepherds who gather at Bethlehem each year to celebrate what they witnessed upon the birth of Christ.The Shepherds Prayer is a story that reminds us of two things. First, we remember that the humble will be lifted up and confound the wisdom of the wise. Secondly, Barry?'s novel reminds us of perhaps how we often react to the difficult and painful circumstances in our lives. The shepherds who first believed in Jesus likely faced oppression and were treated as outcasts. Like them, we must maintain our faith regardless of the world?'s reaction. And we must never water down the message of Christ?'s birth.
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Format: Audiobook, CD
Studio: RM Barry Publications
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 7.19" Width: 5.97" Height: 0.72" Weight: 0.42 lbs.
Release Date Nov 1, 2006
Publisher NEWLIFE BOOK DISTRIBUTORS
ISBN 0976729067 ISBN13 9780976729068
Reviews - What do customers think about The Shepherds' Prayer: A Christmas Novel - Audio Book?
Most Inspiring! Jun 29, 2007
WOW!!! I drove to Wichita on Sunday so The Shepherds' Prayer on CD was my church this week. In case you weren't aware, it is difficult to drive at freeway speeds with eyes over-brimming with tears. John McDonough was a terrific choice as the reader. The total work was inspired and I thank you for it. It will certainly become part of our Christmas observances.
Simple. Sweet. Compelling. Jun 26, 2007
THE SHEPHERD'S PRAYER tells the story of Jesus' birth from the viewpoint of nearby shepherds who were first-hand observers of the wondrous heavenly visitation surrounding the events of the day.
How would simple herdsmen have reacted to an angelic visit, heaven opening up and bursting forth upon the countryside and the Lord, Himself, lying as a vulnerable baby in a rude cattle stall? Herod's atrocities, the bitterness of the bereaved parents, the shunning of the Jews which would eventually cost Jesus his life, are all tenderly but faithfully depicted in this simple story.
There are a few contemporary Christian authors who have a gift for retelling familiar Bible stories from a different perspective and engaging the reader in a compelling, interesting, simple way: Gene Edwards, Philip Yancy, and now, Richard Barry are certainly among those.
SHEPHERD's PRAYER is also a reminder that all believers have a place in the royal lineage in the kingdom of God. Through Jesus to Abraham, today's faithful are partakers of this wonderful story and heirs to the stable as well as to the heavenly realm.
This is a sweet story for all ages.
A great Christmas present May 9, 2007
I enjoyed this little book. It presents a unique approach to the old story of Christ's birth, told from the perspective of one of the shepherds who witnessed the event. Yet it goes beyond that first night. Thought provoking and poignant, a very good read!
Ultimately asks a lingering question... Mar 28, 2007
This is something special. Richard Barry put some thought into this, and the result has the reader thinking. It had me impressed! You have your stories of kings and knights in shining armor, but then at times, you have some simple shepherds. Were the shepherds really THAT important in the life and times of Jesus? Barry makes the case that they were, and they were in fact, the first to hear of the birth of Christ. So is that all there is to it? Are we reading about some Super-shepherds, or is there a little more to this then meets the eye. This IS more then meets the eye, it tugs at the heart!
It tells the story of Anam, who is an adopted son, and although loved deeply by his father, feels like an outcast. With his father's blessing, and a simple lambskin with an inscription, he goes to seek out answers. While he longs for simply a comfort, he gets harsh rebuke, and is forbidden to speak the name of Jesus. He encounters a people who remember the ghastly order of King Herod. They simply remember a massacre. Most claim it was provoked by one baby who would become king of all kings. His quest leads him to the hated shepherds, and he cautiously goes to them for answers. He goes to them, trusting them with everything he's ever held dear, in desire for a simple answer that might comfort him.
The ultimate question this asks is up to the reader. It is the simple challenge of what YOU will do with Jesus Christ? Will you believe, or will your heart reveal doubt? Are you a shepherd at heart? All a simple matter of child-like faith.
There is nothing perfect here, except for Jesus. There is no stunning conclusion, yet a satisfying conclusion to look forward to! A quick read, that tugs at the heart for quite some time. Great work by Richard Barry!
Great story about shepherd's first Christmas, a little clumsy at times Mar 10, 2007
The Shepherd's Prayer by Richard M. Barry is a beautifully produced self-published book. Anam is a young man with a mysterious past who feels compelled to seek out the truth about his birth. This quest takes him to first century Bethlehem with a baby's sheepskin blanket marked with the name Jesus. In Bethelehem, he is shunned and scorned until the shepherds tell him their miraculous story, and he starts to make sense of his past and find his future. This short, but sweet book digs into the story of the shepherds who witnessed Christ's birth and the aftermath of the Slaughter of the Innocents in Bethlehem. Barry writes with a good eye for detail about biblical times, but at times the language of these earthy people seems a bit flowery. He also tends to tell what Anam is thinking/feeling rather than allowing it to show in the story. There's a twist to Anam's identity which is entirely satisfying, and I was very pleased with Barry's portrayal of Jesus. This is an unusual tale that Barry tells well. It would make a lovely Christmas or anytime gift.