A Reason To Forgive: A Novel About Forgiveness (A Reason To Love Book 3)

5.00 out of 5


With God at the center, any marriage can be healed.

Cindy Carlton’s heart knows the pain of loneliness far too well.  She’s been married for over two decades to a man who has grown cold and distant over the years. She struggles to see anything ever improving. Her hope reignites one day when her husband agrees to attend a marriage retreat at Diamond Lake. Could this be an answer to her prayers?

David Carlton married the love of his life twenty-six years ago. He thought he knew her, but then she did the unthinkable and unforgivable, shattering his trust forever. David never stopped loving Cindy, but he did stop showing it and nurturing their marriage. Keeping her at a distance, he learned to rely on the walls he built around his heart so she couldn’t hurt him anymore. Then one day, his wife invited him to a marriage retreat. He feels inclined to go. Little does David know . . . his life would change forever.

From the best-selling Christian romance author, T.K. Chapin, comes a Christian romance novel that focuses on the difficulties that can and do exist in many marriages today. This inspirational romance gives readers a glimpse of God’s ability to influence our lives when we allow Him access. A second-chance romance story that will lift your spirits and tug at your heartstrings.

A Reason To Forgive is book three in the Christian romance series, A Reason To Love.

SKU: B07JH6J1MQ Category:


A story about a struggling Christian marriage, A Reason To Forgive, shows readers what true Biblical forgiveness looks like in this novel about forgiveness.

Story Sample from A Reason To Forgive:

Chapter 1

CINDY DID NOT KNOW HOW to fix her marriage, but she knew it needed to change. Things between her and her husband, David, had steadily gotten worse over the last ten years, growing even worse in the last five years since their only daughter, Melody, moved out of the house. While Cindy kept herself busy with painting and activities at the church, her husband only grew more distant as time went on by throwing himself into work. She found herself more alone with each passing year, and she knew her heart couldn’t take much more. Though she wasn’t as young as she once was, she still had dreams. She wanted to travel, see new places, and experience all that life had to offer. David, on the other hand, did not. He used to want those same things in life, but that was when they were younger, before her mistakes. Life’s difficulties had seemed to harden her husband’s heart and, with time, they had drifted apart, their love growing cold.

One early morning in September, Cindy poured herself a hot cup of coffee from the carafe in the kitchen and then proceeded into the sun room adjacent to the kitchen. Cindy and David lived out in the country, about fifteen minutes from Spokane in the little community of Mead, Washington. Their property was down an old dusty dead-end dirt road. The only sounds that could be heard there were of nature and the creek that wove throughout the property. The two of them loved their home, and the tranquility had been their primary motivation in buying the land and building ten years ago.

While standing in the sun room in the quiet of the morning with her mug of warm coffee, Cindy stared at the stark white canvas sitting on her easel. The canvas had been sitting there for three days now. She had already coated it in gesso, a white sealant put on the canvas in preparation of painting with oil-based paints. The canvas was ready for her brush strokes, for her next great masterpiece. But for Cindy, the hardest part of painting was always the beginning. Just like always, she held the vision of what she wanted the painting to become. This was always the hard part, but today was different. Today, she felt ready. Finally, she dipped the bristles of the paint brush into the wet paint on her pallet and began to spread the very first stroke of color across the blank canvas. Cindy lived in the shadows of all the other paintings that had come before, though she’d often question herself. What if this one isn’t as good? The thought sent waves of terror through her being and plagued her with the urge to procrastinate.

She continued to stare at the canvas as she took deep drinks of her coffee. The heat traveled down her throat and warmed her insides, fighting off a bit of that morning chill and anxiety lingering in the room. You can do it. Don’t overthink it. A moment passed, then she set the mug down on the small table that held her paints, pallet, and brushes. She took a seat on the stool. Tilting her head, she let her eyes wander the sea of white and tiny splash of color, relaxing every muscle in her body as she attempted to prepare herself emotionally and physically to paint. Conjuring the image in her mind’s eye, she took a deep breath. It was time.

“Cindy.” Her husband, David’s, voice broke into her concentration like a jack-hammer while a person is trying to sleep. Her determination melted away instantly, jostling her from the moment.

Without a reply, she turned toward him and raised a questioning eyebrow.

“Have you seen my favorite blue plaid long-sleeve shirt? I looked everywhere and can’t seem to find it.”

Disappointment rose up in her like flood waters rushing into a home during a storm. It wasn’t so much the fact that he had broken her focus on the painting but that his interaction was the typical David. Void of love, and only seeking to satisfy himself. She often questioned what she was still doing with the man, then she’d remind herself of the vow she took before God and all their friends and family decades ago. She yearned for her husband to simply say things like ‘Good morning’ or ‘How are you?’ But that wasn’t David, at least not anymore. She craved desperately for him to care. She wanted him to want her like he used to. He had been so caring, so understanding earlier on in their marriage and courtship. She couldn’t change him, though. She knew that much. Cindy also couldn’t switch off her feelings and desires like a light switch. And so, she lived with a constant ache in her heart as she longed for the husband and man she had married decades ago. Brushing her pain and self-pity aside, she raised her eyebrows as she thought of the usual spots around the house for his misplaced clothing.

“Did you check behind the door in the bathroom?”

“I’ll check there. Thanks.”

Then he left. At least he said ‘thanks’ this time, she thought as she turned back to the canvas. Pausing before refocusing, she prayed. God, help me. I know it’s all in Your timing, but I feel time is running out here. How long must I suffer through life unloved?

Taking another drink of her coffee, she stared at the canvas as she recalled last month’s art gallery event at the Civic in downtown Spokane. It was only the second event she had ever been invited to, and all the well-known local artists of Spokane were in attendance, but only six of those artists were requested to show pieces, and she was one of them. That evening, she sold her first painting ever. The sale was to a cute married couple she had only met that night, but she adored the couple immensely and couldn’t have asked for a better first sale. Mr. and Mrs. Tyler Dunken. They lingered with her for hours, and the three of them spoke about art, faith, Diamond Lake, and how God works everything together for good. Cindy held a secret from them that night though. The whole time they were speaking about God working things for the better, she only thought about how her marriage felt like the exclusion to that rule. She loved the Lord just as much as any Christian in the pew on Sunday morning, but she didn’t see how anything in her marriage was good.


After another half hour with her blank canvas and unable to re-focus, Cindy left the sun room and retrieved a load of laundry from the dryer. She headed to the bedroom with her basket full of procrastination and distraction. As she entered the bedroom, she saw David’s wallet atop the dresser. Her heart flinched. He probably needs that, she thought to herself. Though she didn’t like the way he was acting toward her in life, she still held a deep respect and love for the man. So, after she finished with the laundry, she grabbed the wallet and drove into town.

David was a part-owner and operator of Spokane’s biggest restaurant supply company, Carlton’s. He started the company twenty-four years ago with his long-time friend, Mark Johnson. Though they had a full crew and even trained managers on-site, they both involved themselves in the daily work. That was always David, though. He worked hard to provide for his family and Cindy did her best to respect that about him. However, it was hard for Cindy to have him gone so much of the time, especially after Melody was born. He took only one day off for her birth. Most weeks throughout their marriage, he worked over sixty hours. He made it home every night but had little time for much outside of reheating dinner, watching television, and then going to bed. Then, after Melody moved out five years ago, it was as if he did too. He started working more, and now she only caught small glimpses of her husband. Sometimes, it happened in the morning, like earlier that day, and sometimes right before bed for a few minutes. Outside of those moments, it seemed the only time she saw her husband was on their way to church, when Melody and her husband Tyson invited the two of them over, and when he was fading in and out in front of the television on the weekends. Cindy sensed a growing ocean of distance between their hearts and she felt utterly alone.

Arriving at the receptionist desk at Carlton’s Restaurant Supply, Cindy raised her eyebrows as her gaze caught Jessica, one of the receptionists.

“He’s not in. Out to brunch with the guys and Mark.”

“Oh.” Cindy’s countenance fell, knowing she’d not be able to see him to return the wallet. Fishing the wallet from her purse, she handed it to Jessica. “He forgot this at home. Can you get it to him?”

“Yes, Mrs. Carlton. I’ll get it to him.”

As Cindy walked out of the establishment and headed toward her car in the parking lot, a small cool September breeze brushed across her whole body, sending a chill to her core. Her aloneness crept into her bones and a wave of sorrow washed over her. Admittedly, she had hoped to see him for a brief few extra minutes today. Now that chance was gone. She got into the driver seat and prayed. God . . . despite my sins, You love me. Despite my past, You accept me. Despite me, Lord, You died on the Cross for the salvation of my soul. I have no right to approach You, considering the mistakes I’ve made in this life, but I am coming to You. I am asking You to help my hurting heart. Please? It’ll take nothing short of a miracle for David and me to return to the love and relationship we once had, but I know with You, all things are possible. Amen.

Hot tears of hopelessness burned as they escaped the corners of her eyes and ran trails down her cheeks. Would she ever have her husband’s loving arms back around her? Or was this it?

Her phone rang a moment later in the car. The number was local, but not in her phone book.


“Hey, it’s me, Olivia. From the gallery. My husband and I bought your painting.”

Her sense of loneliness loosened in the moment and she was able to smile. “Oh, hey! I was just thinking about you and Tyler this morning! Did you guys settle on a spot in the house for the painting yet?” The night of the gala, after they purchased the painting, Olivia and Tyler were going back and forth in conversation about the various locations in their home where they’d like to hang the art.

Olivia let out a laugh. “Yes! He caved and let me hang it in the foyer. Listen, the two of us received an invite over to the inn for a marriage retreat that our pastor and his wife are holding for this upcoming weekend. We wanted to know if you and your husband would like to join us?”

Cindy’s heart leaped. “Yes!”

“Great, we’ll see you there. David can go?”

“I’ll talk to him about it and let you know for sure if we can go. What’s the cost?”

“Nothing. It’s free. They don’t want to build barriers for people to be reached by God, so they’re making it all free.”

Her heart fluttered. She knew money would be a huge barrier for David. Though they had plenty of it, he wasn’t one to spend without good cause and she knew he’d have resistance to the idea, especially if it were to cost him anything. “That’s great! I’ll be in touch, and thank you for letting me know about it!”

“You’re welcome. I hope to see the two of you there! There are only five rooms at the inn, so it’ll be pretty low-key.”

Cindy wasn’t much for crowds, so at hearing that, it only drove her desire to attend deeper. “That sounds so amazing! I’ll call you tomorrow morning and let you know.”

Hanging up with Olivia, Cindy glanced up at the ceiling of her car and smiled with tears in her eyes. Thank You.



A Novel About Forgiveness

Good Christian relationships need a healthy and often large amount of forgiveness. Romance novels about Christian marriages need to have some struggle and hardship to help us see how God’s plan for our marriages. Through inspiring characters, a great plot, and encouraging Bible verses, I know you’ll love reading this story.

Through much prayer and consideration, T.K. Chapin has fashioned this story into a piece of Christian literature that will bless you in reading and encourage you in your walk with Christ.

About The Author

Christian Author T.K. Chapin Portrait

The Christian Author Who Keeps God At The Center Of Everything.

T.K. CHAPIN is an award-winning Inspirational Christian Romance and fiction author who designs his stories to inspire and tug on your heartstrings.

He believes that telling authentic stories of faith, love, and family helps build the faith of believers while inviting non-believers into the reality of God.

Each story highlights how God can work in the lives of those who follow Him.

Chapin gives all credit for his writing and storytelling abilities to God. The majority of his stories take place in and around his hometown of Spokane Washington.

Chapin & his wife reside in Southeast Idaho and have three children.

When not writing, he enjoys traveling, swimming, and spending time with friends & family.

Vision For Christian Romance Novels With Realistic Characters

Christian romance novels are often just about two people falling in love, but it goes far beyond just that in T.K. Chapin books.

Real-to-life stories about realistic people are in every single book that Chapin writes.

People struggle with their life and sometimes their faith, Chapin captures that in every story he tells.

If you’re looking for a Christian romance novel that not only entertains but also inspires, pick up a copy of one of the many titles T.K. Chapin has published.

The Vision

As a Christian author, speaker and entrepreneur, it’s T.K. Chapin’s hope and desire to help build the Kingdom of God for His glory alone. It’s through the stories, articles, and connections with others that this is made possible.

Additional information




Branch Publishing (November 15, 2018)

Publication date‏:‎

November 15, 2018



File size‏:‎

2772 KB

Simultaneous device usage‏:‎




Screen Reader‏:‎


Enhanced typesetting‏:‎



Not Enabled

Word Wise‏:‎


Print length‏:‎

266 pages

Page numbers source ISBN‏:‎




Best Sellers Rank:

#216 in Christian Dating & Relationships (Kindle Store)

Customer Reviews:

92 ratings