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Saving My Assassin by Virginia Prodan ⇉ A Powerful, Thrilling, and Uplifting Testimony

Thursday, April 6, 2017
Political intrigue. Drama. Suspense. Danger. And even some romance.

These elements come together in Saving My Assassin, a memoir that provides an insider perspective to life in communist Romania under the leadership of Nicolae Ceaușescu with a focus on Christian persecution.

"The world is a dangerous place; not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it."

Albert Einstein

Gripping and Suspenseful
Saving My Assassin proved to be as gripping as you'd expect given the elements listed above.

Nowadays, as a second-year teacher, I rarely feel like I have the time to read for leisure—much less finish a book in one sitting. Outside of breaking for lunch and a quick grocery run, that's exactly what happened with Saving My Assassin. It was that unputdownable.

The story is rather fast-paced. In the first quarter or so of the book, we fly through Virginia's childhood and studies as a law student, then we proceed to progress rapidly through cases that give us insight into her life as a lawyer. While this breaks the flow of events, it works for this book because its purpose is not to celebrate Virginia's personal life and accomplishments but what God worked in and through Virginia.

Answers "Unresolved" Questions
Some questions are raised (in the reader's mind) throughout the novel. Some include: What happened to the assassin after he and Virginia parted ways in Romania long ago? What is his story? What are the circumstances surrounding Virginia's birth? What happened to her family in the end?

Some are addressed in part in the main text of the memoir. Others are answered in the Epilogue, A Final Note from the Author, Afterword, and the Author Q&A.

I highly recommend reading these "extras" as they contribute to our understanding of her story and the stories of the people whose lives she touched.

Demonstrates the Power of Conviction
Conviction is something many of us lack. We want God's salvation and the peace and joy that come with faith in Him, but we aren't willing to follow Him all the way. We don't feel the call to speak up and act on His behalf, or we're too afraid to take a stand for Christ and share the gospel.

Virginia listened to God. She felt the call to stand up for Christians being persecuted under Ceaușescu's regime, and her actions (and the actions of those she defended in court) helped pave the way for religious liberty in Romania.

Yes, her story sounds unbelievable, miraculous even. Yes, not all of us are called to take such a public stand. Yes, Virginia is Virginia, and her testimony is her testimony.

Just because we too choose to follow Christ doesn't mean that we will have the privilege of having God work through us in exactly the same way He did through Virginia. What we should take away from her story is the power of faith and following the conviction given to us. As Virginia says in her memoir, in the moment, she didn't know how the fruits of her efforts would turn out, but she chose to remain steadfast in the faith and continue moving forward. Likewise, we'll never know what we can accomplish through God's power unless we trust in Him and take action.

In the end, it's not about Virginia
While we certainly learn much about Virginia's story and how her efforts helped save many lives, Saving My Assassin is not about Virginia. Saving My Assassin is a powerful testimony on how God works in and through us when we place our faith in him.

"I understand the outer battle . . . But I cannot win this inner battle between my own heart and mind. Lord, you have to win this victory for me. Take away my fear and replace it with a peace that surpasses all understanding. I need your peace, Lord. I need your victory."

Virginia Prodan

A constant theme in Virginia's story is that of God's great power.

Especially moving for me is Virginia's testimony in Chapter 15 on how God's strength helped her love her enemies. On her own, she couldn't love the people who inflicted pain and punishment on her, but she would remember Jesus's words to love our enemies and pray for those who persecute us (Matt. 5:44).

Now, everything didn't click into place for her from the start. Virginia admits that she struggled a lot with loving her enemies before she could do it from the heart. I appreciate how she includes this detail because  I struggle with prayer, humbling myself, and pursuing God's will over mine. It is encouraging to see how our continued efforts to draw close to God will be rewarded.

Like Virginia, we will go through trials that test our faith. We will find ourselves with the opportunity to take a stand for Christ or deny Him out of fear. Depending on where we are in our walk with Jesus, it may take us years, or it may take us days to reach the level of conviction that Virginia demonstrates in her testimony. That's okay. We just need to keep moving forward, building our relationship with God, and challenging ourselves to overcome the trials before us.


FINAL THOUGHTS


Saving My Assassin is a testimony on the power of faith, the importance of truth, and the redeeming love of Christ. Set in the last years of the communist regime of Nicolae Ceaușescu, it also gives us a glimpse into Christian persecution and the value of freedom—to speak up, to go out, to select your career, to worship. And it raises concerns given the increasing persecution of Christians in other countries that also outwardly support religious freedom.

★★★★★



"I should be dead. Buried in an unmarked grave in Romania. Obviously, I am not. God had other plans."

At just under five feet tall, Virginia Prodan was no match for the towering 6' 10" gun-wielding assassin the Romanian government sent to her office to take her life. It was not the first time her life had been threatened--nor would it be the last.

As a young attorney under Nicolae Ceausescu's brutal communist regime, Virginia had spent her entire life searching for the truth. When she finally found it in the pages of the most forbidden book in all of Romania, Virginia accepted the divine call to defend fellow followers of Christ against unjust persecution in an otherwise ungodly land.

For this act of treason, she was kidnapped, beaten, tortured, placed under house arrest, and came within seconds of being executed under the orders of Ceausescu himself. How Virginia not only managed to elude her enemies time and again, but how she also helped expose the appalling secret that would ultimately lead to the demise of Ceausescu's evil empire is one of the most extraordinary stories ever told.





CHAT WITH ME


How will you go out and make a difference in someone's life this week?




Publication Info
  • Saving My Assassin by Virginia Prodan
  • Published by Tyndale House
  • On June 7, 2016
  • Genres: ChristianMemoir
  • Pages: 304 Pages
  • Format: Hardback
Series
  • N/A
Content
  • Mention of kissing
  • Violence (not graphic)
  • Persecution

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