Beneath the Tamarisk Tree - Rob Seabrook
by Rob Seabrook
Beneath the Tamarisk Tree is the new novel from first time author, Rob Seabrook.
Inspired by the line in Luke 23:43, where we see Jesus hanging on the cross and saying to the thief next to him "Truly I tell you, today you will be with me in paradise” (NIV), the story follows that thief's story. How he found himself in that situation, his background, but also what happened next when that promise from Jesus was fulfilled.
The thief, Dismas, awakes in heaven, baffled and confused as to what has happened, completely amazed by the wonder of his new surroundings. He is welcomed by Jesus and for the first time in his short, wretched life he begins to discover some of the normal human feelings and emotions that had been buried and suppressed by a life lived on the streets.
As he reflects on his past he is healed and restored, learning that he is no different to anyone else – that he is created special and unique by a forgiving Father; that he is saved, healed and restored by a compassionate Son and that he is filled with love and joy by the presence of the Holy Spirit.
Beneath the Tamarisk Tree is a fictional take on the story of the Penitent Thief, a character mentioned so briefly in the Bible. But his encounter with Jesus offers great insight into the scale of the sacrifice that Jesus made, and all that is freely available to everyone who believes.
It is a novel, a work of fiction, based on solid Biblical truths that is written so as to feed the reader's imagination and bring them a deeper understanding of what Jesus has done for them as individuals. To help ensure the reader knows that whoever they are and whatever they have done, no one is beyond the redemptive love of God.
The author, Rob Seabrook, lives and works in beautiful Devon, UK, is married to Gemma, with three grown up children, Bruno the dog and some chickens. As foster carers, together they have gained insight into the impact of trauma on children, and have seen that rebuilding a life takes endless patience, full acceptance, love and care, and there is always room for second chances. It is this experience that part inspired the context for the novel, Beneath the Tamarisk Tree. Rob is a keen reader and after a few years of complaining that he could never find enough Christian flavoured novels, he felt challenged to have a go at writing one for himself.