The men and women in the Bible aren’t fictional characters, they were people just like us – broken, imperfect, and at times overwhelmed with life’s circumstances. Jo welcomes Mary DeMuth to explore the book she co-authored with Frank Viola on this topic, titled .

She retells the remarkable encounters of five women who Jesus met and how it forever changed their lives. Hear refreshing perspectives and stories of real women as they help usher you into recognizing your own encounter with Jesus. Here’s where the conversation takes us:

Mary talks about her path as a novelist and how she came to find herself working on this effort. She explains her belief that some of the most powerful learning we can experience comes from hearing stories – and points to Jesus implementing stories repeatedly to instruct his followers. Truth is made more beautiful through the power of a story.

Here are the five stories we explore:

• The diary of a woman caught in adultery.

• The diary of a prostitute who loved much.

• The diary of a desperate Samaritan woman.

• The diary of a woman with a flow of blood.

• The diary of the woman whom Jesus loved.

Mary explains why many of these stories resonate with her personally, having experienced a season of profound broken-ness herself. She notes that Jesus is always breaking the categories and loving the outcasts. This is a trait we can and should emulate. Who are the outcasts in our daily life and how can we show them love? In the grand scheme, there is great hope in the fact that the hope of the gospel is for the outcast!

Which of these remarkable stories impacted Mary the most? She explains her answer by sharing that so many of us are longing to find healing.

Highlight: On Mary

Diaries from women in the Bible