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8.16.2012

Jeremy's Christmas Journey ~ Book Review


Jeremy's Christmas Journey

By Scott A. Johnson

Everyone is enjoying Christmas except Jeremy Hatfield.  Jeremy is confined to his wheelchair, paralyzed from the waist down.  His attitude has kept him from developing any close friendships with any kids his age.  
But Jeremy is about to have a Christmas unlike any he has ever experienced before.  As he falls to sleep he is transported to a strange room where a trial is taking place.

Jesus' entire ministry is on trial.  Witness after witness is called to testify on behalf of the recently crucified Jesus.  First to testify on Jesus' behalf is His mother Mary followed by His brother James.  
But Jeremy has doubts about the testimony that he heard after all Jesus' family would lie for Him and to protect their family name.  

When additional witnesses are called on Jesus' behalf, Jeremy's heart begins softening and his doubts about Jesus fade.

Suddenly Jeremy is pulled from the courtroom into the presence of the Savior.  Then just as suddenly Jeremy is again in the courtroom.  Jeremy is so touched by his experience that he asks to speak on behalf of Jesus.
In the middle of his testimony Jeremy suddenly wakes up as he falls from his bed.  As he prepares to pull himself back into his bed Jeremy realizes he has experienced a Christmas miracle - a miracle that would be his testimony on Christ's behalf for the rest of his life!

Each person who testifies on Christ's behalf has their testimony written as a song. These songs include More Than My SonMy Brother's WorkEyes That Now SeeA Man ArisenWhole AgainThe Changed ManTo Be More Like Him, and Now Rejoice.  These songs along with the music are included in the back of the book so that you can sing the testimony of our Holy Savior too!  

You can add to your experience when you listen to the music CD of the same name.  

Jeremy's Christmas Journey is a delightful story to add a new level of worship to your Christmas celebrations. This book and CD set would be a wonderful gift to present to your seeking friends and family!

I was provided a digital review copy of this title by the author for the purpose of this review. No expectations were placed on this review and all opinions expressed are my own.


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Interview with Scott A Johnson

1) What was your inspiration for Jeremy's Christmas Journey?

I have always enjoyed inspirational music and creative writing. I love the spirit that is present at Christmas time and wanted to find a way that I could share the Spirit of Christ with others. While attending a showing of The Forgotten Carols by Michael McLean, I thought of the concept of Jeremy’s Christmas journey; excited that it could unite writing and music. I originally wrote a short story with lyrics for my family to enjoy during Christmas. I received so much positive feedback that a few years later I decided to expand the story—adding more detail and more characters—and started looking for composers to help complete the project.

2) What is the difference between writing a story and song lyrics?  Which do you prefer?

I have learned a lot about lyrics writing and music in general from this project. Originally I thought my poems could just have music composed for them exactly how they were, but after working on the first song with Lyle it became readily apparent to me that lyric writing is an art of its own. Writing a story and song lyrics are similar in that they both require a great deal of creativity and imagination. Lyric writing can be challenging because you have to fit what you want to say within the melody, or the notes, of the song. I do enjoy both though, and would love the opportunity to write lyrics for more songs.

3) What do you hope readers and listeners will take away from Jeremy's Christmas Journey? 

My greatest hope is that people who read the story or listen to the music will have their faith in Christ strengthened. I also hope that readers and listeners will be uplifted by the story. We all have challenges like Jeremy does and we have a choice how we can respond to them. I hope that Jeremy’s Christmas Journey will help people find hope in adversity, and strength in difficult circumstances.

4) What is your favorite scene from Jeremy's Christmas Journey?

My favorite scene is when Jeremy’s heart is touched and he experiences a life altering encounter that only his Savior can provide. It is a very touching and emotional moment.

5) How much influence does your faith have on your writing?

My faith has a significant influence on my writing. I believe that when one finds Christ, they have a responsibility to share Christ’s gospel with others. Jeremy’s Christmas Journey was one way I could accomplish this. I also feel I had heavenly guidance as I completed this project, which helped make it a more powerful witness of Christ.

6) As a writer what do you wish people knew about your writing?

I have a great desire to help and serve others and my writing sort of takes on this persona. Whether I am writing an article to be published online or a book, my goal is to provide the reader an experience that will positively influence the his or her life. I am pleased when someone takes the time to let me know that something I wrote enriched their life.