Saturday, May 29, 2010

A Father's Touch

A Father's Touch is a gift book that is written by Joni Eareckson Tada and illustrated by Craig Nelson. The story opens as a young boy, Justin William Chase, Jr., watches at the door of his father's study. He stands admiring the sight and smells of his father painting. Justin William Chase, Sr., is a famous painter who often affords his son the opportunity to "help" him paint.

There was nothing that young Justin liked more than to sit on his dad's lap and paint:

"Mr. Chase would then wrap his large hand around Justin's and dab the brush into the paint on the palette. Holding on to his son's hand and the brush, the artist would swirl the most beautiful colors across the canvas. Justin, all wide-eyed and grinning, delighted in feeling his father's hand around his."

Years passed, and Justin grew to learn more about painting, attending one of the best schools in New England. He always attributed his success to his father, and could almost feel the grip of his father's hand on his as he created his masterpieces.

Mr. Chase was proud of the success of his son, but always cautioned Justin not to lose sight of the love he had of painting. He urged Justin to always paint for the Lord. Even though Justin knew his father was right, he couldn't help but feel pride at his father's fame ... and his own.

Justin Jr. was becoming an artist of great notoriety, but as he worked hard to meet his client's demands, he found himself losing the joy he had in painting. As he lost his joy, his talent and the fame he had enjoyed seemed to wane with it.

His father, sensing that something was very wrong with his son, summoned him home to America. As Justin Jr. knelt by his elderly father's chair pouring out his woes, his father guided him to a blank canvas. Mr. Chase once again as in days of old wrapped his fingers around those of his son and together they painted a beautiful masterpiece.

Justin, full of awe and delight at what they had created, was astonished to realize that his father was almost blind and couldn't even see what they had created. His father helped him to realize that he had never lost his talent. He just needed to feel the safety of his father's presence and the assurance of his love.

What I Like: This is a book that will stay with me long after I read it. This would be a very meaningful Father's Day gift. The paintings capture the emotion of the story. I love how the story evokes thought of our Heavenly Father who loves us with an everlasting love.

What I Dislike: I can't think of a thing that I dislike about this book.

Overall Rating: Excellent

Age Appeal:

Publisher Info: Crossway Books, 2005; ISBN:1581347146 ; Hardcover $17.99.

Buy it now at for $17.99.

Special Info: You can read our other reviews of books written by Joni Eareckson Tada.

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Tanya said...

I agree this is a great book.

The text of this story originally appeared in "Tell Me the Promises." That book, now out of print, was filled with great tales like this one, all inspired by Ron DiCianni - my favorite contemporary artist!

Thanks, Bev, for the review! I'm glad to know at least one of those stories is still widely available. :)

Beverly said...

Thanks, Tanya!