When I was ten years old my parents took our family to Pennsylvania Dutch Country for vacation. I’ve been intrigued with the Amish community ever since. I’ve always dreamed of spending just a day on an Amish farm. Observing, learning, taking in all the simplicity.
We’ve been back to visit several times since then and I am still enamored by their lifestyle. When I was a home health nurse in the mountains of Virginia I had the opportunity to care for an Old Order Mennonite family and figured that was as close to an Amish family as I would ever get. They drove a horse and buggy, wore simple handmade clothes, had no electricity or indoor plumbing, and made their living off the farm.
|A favorite photos of mine | Lancaster, PA
The Eashs were born and married in the Amish community in Indiana. In 1982, a buggy accident claimed the lives of their two daughters, ages 5 and 7. They were heartbroken and devastated. Unfortunately they did not receive the spiritual support they needed through their Amish friends and family and were haunted by the idea that their deeds may never be good enough to secure them a place in heaven with their children.
|An Amish funeral | Lancaster
Years later, they were led to Montana where they eventually found Christ and learned the meaning of salvation through faith. Their decision to associate and study the bible with the “Englisch” in their community led to a silencing and finally a shunning from their Amish family and friends.
The Eashs left their family and friends and all they had ever known to follow Christ. On their first trip back to Indiana after leaving the Amish faith, Irene’s father asked her, “How could you do this?” She states, “Inside, I asked myself a different question. After our transformation in Christ, how could we not?”
I have learned a lot over the years about the Amish and how they live but this book taught me so much that I didn’t know about their beliefs. They are firm believers in a works based faith—you have to do certain things and not do other things and then maybe you’ll go to heaven. There is never a guarantee you will be saved because to believe you are saved would be considered boastful. Most of their beliefs are centered on not being “of the world.” Cars, modern clothing, phones, electricity—to the Amish, these are all signs someone is worldly.
I was moved to tears when I discovered that two of the Eash boys have grown up to be Christian ministers. If tragedy had not struck their family, the Eashs likely would never have found the truth of salvation by grace through Jesus Christ. Isn’t it amazing how God can turn something so awful into something beautiful? The Eashs now have a guarantee or seeing their girls again one day as they await their parents in heaven.
Isn’t Plain Faith a beautiful thing?
I highly recommend this book especially if you are interested in learning more about the Amish community and faith. It was a quick and easy read. I learned a lot, I shed a couple tears and I felt very inspired by the faith of the Eash family.
Disclaimer: I received a free digital copy of this book from Zondervan through BookLook Bloggers. I was not required to write a favorable review and all thoughts and opinions are my own. This post contains affiliate links. See disclosure policy for more information.
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