Customer Reviews for

Take a Chance on Me (Christiansen Family Series #1)

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  • Posted May 8, 2013

    What can I say except that I loved this book! Which is kind of

    What can I say except that I loved this book! Which is kind of weird because it took me so long to read this book. I said I would read it in exchange for some truthful reviews. I’m kind of a stubborn person, and the thought of having to read a book felt like school work (if you must know I didn’t like any of the books that I had to read for school) so I put off reading it. Then it got some good reviews, and I was afraid to be the person who didn’t like it. So I put it off some more. But once I finally started reading the book, I couldn’t put it down. In fact, when I reached the final 120 pages, I was rationalizing that my boys didn’t need clean clothes or dinner. They are boys after all, and I really, really wanted to finish the book as fast as possible. I couldn’t wait to find out what happened to the characters. I felt as if they were real. (Don’t worry though my boys were in clean clothes and didn’t have to resort to eating cereal out of the box and I was able to finish reading too. Thanks to my husband).

    Basically, Take a Chance on Me is the first book in a new series by Susan May Warren. It revolves around the adult children on the Christiansen family, who live just outside of Deep Haven, Minnesota. If you are a Susan May Warren fan, you probably know and love the people and town of Deep Haven. And they make appearances in the book. Or if you are like me and haven’t read any of the Deep Haven series, don’t fear because you won’t feel left out. You won’t need to catch up on the history of the other series in order to enjoy this one. Furthermore, Warren is a great writer and can tell a story without a background dump of information that will put you to sleep.

    Take a chance on this new series (pun intended). There was adventure, there was romance, but not enough of one to overpower the other. I can’t wait for the next book in the series to come out. In the meantime, I think I’ll read the books in original Deep Haven series.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 7, 2013

    I love Susan May Warren's books and I especially love her books


    I love Susan May Warren's books and I especially love her books set in the small Minnesota town of Deep Haven. I wish it were a real town and I could go visit. She's set 6 books there already, I believe. They are all stand alone books but this time: she's written Take a Chance On Me, the first in a 6 book series about the Christiansen family.

    I was fortunate enough to be on the launch team for this book and I am so glad to be given this book early. What a joy to hold another of Susan's books in my hands again! I only wish the other 5 could be here in the same year.

    Ivy Madison, former foster child and now a county prosecutor, moves to Deep Haven to have a place to belong. She attends a bachelor auction as a fundraiser and bids on a bachelor, Darek Christiansen. Ivy wrote a plea agreement getting on community service for the man who everyone assumed killed Darek's late wife. She finds out but not before her heart is engaged with Darek's. How can she tell him? She wants so desperately to belong and have a feeling of permanence somewhere. She knows she will be left alone again the moment she tells Darek.

    Jenson Atwood didn't see Felicity Christiansen running that night when his car struck and killed her. Now that he's gotten community service and no jail time, he's worked hard to finish his service. But the town seems to be against him. He feels like everyone is watching him, waiting for him to mess up again. He and Darek were once best friends and now Darek can barely stand the sight of Jenson.

    Both these men haven't allowed God the chance to show them the grace He freely offers. Both seem bound in the snares of unforgiveness and bitterness. They can't see that those around them care what happens to them.

    There are several stories in this novel, all heartrending and painful at times. It's a revelation to me of how God waits for us, hoping that we will allow Him to have His way in our lives. How often do we, as believers, try to plod through life on our own, bearing burdens that God never wanted us to carry? We could so easily let Him walk alongside us and help us with our load, but we have too much pride to admit that we need help.

    This book also shows us that even though we go our own way and allow heartbreaking events to make us bitter, God can still use those very events to bring about His peace and mercy and grace in our lives.

    I laughed, cried, (bawled, actually) and felt joyous reading this book. It left me wondering how I could stand to read the remaining 5 if this one moved me so deeply. This is a book you will remember long after you close the cover. It is one which will always have pride of place on my book shelves.

    I am eagerly awaiting the next book in the Christiansen family series.

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    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 4, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    This is the first book in the Christiansen Family Novel series.

    This is the first book in the Christiansen Family Novel series. It was such a good read, and I am thrilled to know there is another book coming!
    The Author shows how most of the characters in this story need to find forgiveness. They blame God for their circumstances, and won't take his gift of redemption.
    Darek Christiansen is mad at the world, feels he has been handed a rotten deal, and the only good thing in his life is his 5 year old son Tiger. He was a willing player, but now feels life has not been fair to him. Then his wife was killed by his best friend....it was an accident and he knows it, but would rather blame his friend.
    Enter Ivy Madison, a sweet young woman, she has taken a job as Assistant DA in Deep Haven, MN. She has had a scarred upbringing, having lived in fourteen foster homes. For someone who had such a horrible start in life, she has a lot of compassion.
    The Lord does put people in their lives to help them find what they need...HIM, but will the accept? Or will they go on blaming God for their problems?
    I did love being back in Deep Haven, MN, the area sounds so beautiful, and Susan May Warren brings it to life. Be set for a bit of romance, mystery, grief, and some great family love. A wonderful book to get lost in.

    I received this book from the Tyndale Blog Network, and was not required to give a positive review.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 21, 2014

    I love finding a new book series to fall in love with! And that

    I love finding a new book series to fall in love with! And that is what I feel has happened after reading Take a Chance on Me. This book was wonderful and introduced me to a family that I want to learn everything about.

    Take a Chance on Me takes place in Deep Haven, Minnesota. This is the setting of another series that Susan May Warren wrote. But don’t worry if you haven’t read that series. You don’t need to read it to understand what is going on in this new series.

    In this first book of the series, we meet the Christiansen family. This is a family that really loves each other and stands strong together. John and Ingrid Christiansen own the Evergreen Resort. They have six grown children. Take a Chance on Me is about their oldest, Darek, who is a widower and single father. He has so much anger in his heart. Anger toward himself, his dead wife, his former best friend, God and just life in general.

    Ivy is new to Deep Haven. She has never had the love and support of a family or the stability of staying in one town for long. She falls in love with Deep Haven and plans to make her permanent home there as a county prosecutor. Ivy has some issues with believing that God cares, based on things that have happened in her life. Things in her life always seem to fall apart, but now Ivy holds out hope for a family and future. So, when she has the chance to grow close to Darek and then finds that there are some truths that might come to light and tear them apart, she is devastated.

    Two other characters, Jensen and Claire, have their own pasts to deal with and their own issues with God to come to terms with. Their back stories, as well as Ivy and Darek’s are interwoven and so very interesting. All of these characters are very well-written. I am really looking forward to reading more from this series.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 11, 2014

    LOVED!!!!!!!!!!!!

    I just finished this book last night, i forced myself to stay up and read the rest! OMG this book is my favorite book in the whole world!!!!!! It seemed to have everything i love to read about. I could not get over Warren's writing, it was amazing! As for the book, it seems to be based on forgiveness, second chances, and if course, ROMANCE!!! Oh my word, the romance was to die for amazing!!!! I have never read such a deep CHRISTIAN romance before, it was so deep and beautiful!!!! My only negative complaints are that the begining started in a bar... I mean, really?? I was not sure if it was a real bar or not, but beer and God do NOT mix. And then just another complaint, is that I didnt really like how Tiger was well, 'alive' if you must say, in Felicity before marriage, ( it usually bothers me to read that stuff, but it didnt really, because I know that God would protect me from that.) But it was worded rightly, not too deep into it, or words that explain it. But any way, i LOVED this book, there were times i almost cried too, and then nearly laughed my head off. I am so excited for her next book in the series to come out!! Except i kinda wish the whole bar/beer thing wasnt included in this series, other than that, it was amazing. I am STILL gloating over this book, especailly about the romance. No kidding, it was deep, beautiful and everything else romantic!!! And i loved the adventures and mysterys, forgot to mention, that my heart nearly throbbed out of my chest at all the exciting parts- which i have NEVER felt that way before when reading another romance!!!! Which is an awesome feeling, it makes the book more alive. Oh how i wish that the story was real and i was apart of it!!!!!! Literally, gloating... GREAT JOB SUSAN MAY WARREN!!!!!!!!!

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  • Posted January 4, 2014

    This is a great story of what forgiveness can do. Darek Christi

    This is a great story of what forgiveness can do.

    Darek Christiansen is almost a dream bachelor – oldest son in the large Christiansen clan, heir to their historic Evergreen Lake Resort, and doting father. But he’s also wounded and angry since the tragic death of his wife, Felicity. No woman in Deep Haven dares come near.

    Ivy Madison has moved to Deep Haven to take the job as assistant county attorney. Living in a small town and being a part of the community has been her dream. Suddenly her life has become more complicated. She simply doesn’t know any better when she bids on Darek at the charity auction held the first day she is in town. Nor does she know that when she crafted a plea bargain three years ago to keep Jensen Atwood out of jail and in Deep Haven fulfilling community service, she was releasing the man responsible for Felicity’s death. All Ivy knows is that the Christiansens feel like the family she’s always longed for. And once she gets past Darek’s tough exterior, she finds a man she could spend the rest of her life with. Which scares her almost as much as Darek learning of her involvement in his wife’s case.

    Caught between new love and old grudges, Darek must decide if he can set aside the past for a future with Ivy – a future more and more at risk as an approaching wildfire threatens to wipe out the Christiansen resort and Deep Haven itself.

    I love the small town of Deep Haven that Susan May Warren has created. I would love to be able to live in a community like it where everyone knows each other. This is the first book of a new series set in the same community. I quickly fell in love with the Christiansen family. It would be so cool to be neighbors with a tight knit family like this.

    This particular book is the story of the oldest son Darek. As with most people he has a lot of baggage to deal with from past decisions. I thoroughly enjoyed finding out how his parents helped him to work through some of that baggage without ever judging him for those decisions. There are many other characters whose stories intertwine with Darek’s that are also working through past baggage. The gentle nudges that they all get to look to God for help is incredible. They all have a journey to take to find forgiveness for themselves and others. The paths are so intricately woven that it was a joy to follow along with these wonderful characters.

    I’m looking forward to finding out the stories of the rest of the Christiansen children in future books in this series.

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  • Posted December 11, 2013

    I really enjoyed this book. The Characters are real with real pr

    I really enjoyed this book. The Characters are real with real problems and flaws. It is interesting how we are painted a picture from each of the characters skewed viewpoints. It is sad how we tend to think the worse of people and hold grudges. This is sometimes from our own insecurities. I love the way everything comes together in the end. A great Clean story.

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  • Posted November 30, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Susan May Warren in her new book ¿Take A Chance On Me¿ Book One

    Susan May Warren in her new book “Take A Chance On Me” Book One in the Christiansen Family series published by Tyndale House Publishers takes us into the life of Darek Christiansen.




    From the back cover:   Come home to the Christiansen’s, where faith and family meet real life.




    To all who know her, Darek Christiansen is almost a dream bachelor—oldest son in the large Christiansen clan, heir to their historic Evergreen Lake Resort, and doting father. But he’s also wounded and angry since the tragic death of his wife, Felicity. No woman in Deep Haven dares come near.




    New assistant county attorney Ivy Madison simply doesn’t know any better when she bids on Darek at the charity auction. Nor does she know that when she crafted a plea bargain three years ago to keep Jensen Atwood out of jail and in Deep Haven fulfilling community service, she was releasing the man responsible for Felicity’s death. All Ivy knows is that the Christiansens feel like the family she’s always longed for. And once she gets past Darek’s tough exterior, she finds a man she could spend the rest of her life with. Which scares her almost as much as Darek learning of her involvement in his wife’s case.




    Caught between new love and old grudges, Darek must decide if he can set aside the past for a future with Ivy—a future more and more at risk as an approaching wildfire threatens to wipe out the Christiansen resort and Deep Haven itself.




    I like this town of Deep Haven.  Ms. Warren does such a good job with the town and its inhabitants that you want to go there and live with them despite that the winters there are brutal.   Ivy Madison is the perfect heroine, she is the new assistant county attorney.  Ivy has an indirect connection with Darek though neither knows it at first.  Each of them has scars and wounds they need healed.  The only one who can heal them is God and they won’t let Him.  ”Take A Chance On Me” is an emotional ride that will wring you out and then fill you with renewal.  God tells us that all things work together for the good and that, in His time, He makes all things beautiful.  Want to really know how He does it?  Susan May Warren shows us the how in this exciting story.  ”Take A Chance On Me” is a wonderful, sweet story with power and depth that will keep you flipping pages.  I recommend this book highly and look forward to a return to Deep Haven.




    Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Tyndale House Publishers.   I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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  • Posted August 31, 2013

    As a huge fan of Susan May Warren, I was thrilled to read Take a

    As a huge fan of Susan May Warren, I was thrilled to read Take a Chance on Me. As expected, I absolutely loved it! The plot, characters, and underlying themes are so rich, and I felt like I was right in the middle of everything the whole time. I loved Ivy and Darek and watching their friendship develop, and the addition of all of the drama surrounding Jensen really helped round out the story.

    If I could sum up the message of the book in one word, it would belonging. Each of the characters are searching for a place to belong and must overcome past circumstances and their own shame to find that belonging. Let me just say it's a fascinating journey.

    As a huge fan of family sagas, I'm looking forward to reading more about the Christiansen family! Whether you're looking for a romance or a deep, emotional story, Take a Chance on Me is a great choice! [5 stars]

    I received a free copy of this book from the author in exchange for my fair and honest review.

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  • Posted August 31, 2013

    As a huge fan of Susan May Warren, I was thrilled to read Take a

    As a huge fan of Susan May Warren, I was thrilled to read Take a Chance on Me. As expected, I absolutely loved it! The plot, characters, and underlying themes are so rich, and I felt like I was right in the middle of everything the whole time. I loved Ivy and Darek and watching their friendship develop, and the addition of all of the drama surrounding Jensen really helped round out the story.

    If I could sum up the message of the book in one word, it would belonging. Each of the characters are searching for a place to belong and must overcome past circumstances and their own shame to find that belonging. Let me just say it's a fascinating journey.

    As a huge fan of family sagas, I'm looking forward to reading more about the Christiansen family! Whether you're looking for a romance or a deep, emotional story, Take a Chance on Me is a great choice! [5 stars]

    I received a free copy of this book from the author in exchange for my fair and honest review.

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  • Posted August 21, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    This is an amazing story about second chances at love and the im

    This is an amazing story about second chances at love and the importance of forgiveness. Darek Christiansen is the oldest in a large family, trying to keep their resort in Minnesota in the black. He's also a widower with a young son, angry and bitter at his best friend Jensen, who accidentally killed her. When he meets Ivy Madison, the new assistant county attorney, he has no idea that it was her plea bargain that gave Jensen community service instead of jail time. All he knows is that she might be his second chance. Ivy loves the sense of family and community she finds in Deep Haven, especially since she grew up in foster homes, but she's terrified the truth will come out about her involvement in the case. She's falling for Darek and his little boy, but can he forgive her when he learns the truth?

    Jensen may not have gone to jail, but he feels like he's been in prison for the last three years. Trapped in Deep Haven in order to do his community service, he feels like everyone hates him and he can't wait to leave until he reunites with Claire, Darek's wife's best friend. Could he get a second chance with her, Darek, and the town he loves?

    I loved this story set in the cozy town of Deep Haven. This is a new series that spins off of the Deep Haven novels, focusing on the Christiansen family, but will have cameos of characters from the other novels. The way Susan writes emotions and scenes bring the story to life. I fell in love with the characters and was rooting for them to find the forgiveness and love they searched for. I really want to live in Deep Haven, but reading this story is the next best thing. I can't wait for the next book in the series!

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  • Posted August 8, 2013

    Susan May Warren is an excellent author! Ivy and Darek meet wh

    Susan May Warren is an excellent author! Ivy and Darek meet when Ivy buys him at a charity auction soon after she arrives in town. It becomes apparent they both have secrets from the past that they must deal with before they can pursue any sort of relationship and Darek has no idea that their secrets are intertwined so closely.
    This is a good start to the Christiansen Family Series set in Deep Haven.

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  • Posted August 6, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    I love a book that transports me into vivid scenes and touching

    I love a book that transports me into vivid scenes and touching relationships. Take a Chance on Me did just that. The surroundings are almost tangible, the four distinct points of view are easy to follow, and the characters made me care about them. 

    This goes much deeper than a Christian romance story. Susan May Warren layered it with a lovely message that leaves you with a sense of accomplishment when you come to the end.

    I recommend this book to anyone who wants an emotional, tear-stained ride through a beautiful setting and story. A true keeper.

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  • Posted August 3, 2013

    Excellent. Involving, Touching, Sweetly Romantic. I enjoyed this

    Excellent. Involving, Touching, Sweetly Romantic. I enjoyed this book for well-portrayed characters and well-described scenes. The author knows the Great Lakes area and the forest-firefighting scenarios quite well. The plot pulled me right into the lives of the characters. The family showed strong faith, and helped the main characters to move forward in their search for healing. The banter among the family members was fun. I enjoyed the drama, the light romance, and the unfolding of the different backgrounds for the main characters. This story made me laugh and cry.

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  • Posted July 12, 2013

    Felicity was hit by a car and killed. Now, three years later, e

    Felicity was hit by a car and killed. Now, three years later, everyone who knew her is bogged down with emotional baggage: the townspeople who loved her, her best friend who just can’t get on with her life, her husband who is consumed by guilt over his inability to love her, the man who killed her who was sentenced to 3000 hours of community service in the town that hates him, and the lawyer who made his plea bargain possible and kept him out of prison. They all have struggled with or totally lost their faith in God as loving Father. Now, when fresh starts seem possible for these characters, their bitterness and anger get in the way. They seem unable to ask for or give the forgiveness necessary to move on with their lives.
    The characters are flawed but achingly real, and their emotions and actions ring true. The reader wants so much for everyone in the story to experience healing and wholeness because these are people easy to relate to and care about. The story line is believable, full of action and angst. The Christian message of redemption and grace is beautifully portrayed in several different ways. Great Christian romance.

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  • Posted June 18, 2013

    Loved my time getting to know the Christiansen family and their

    Loved my time getting to know the Christiansen family and their friends. It was fun seeing old friends, too. It makes you want to go visit. 
    It is hard to ask for forgiveness and harder still to forgive yourself. This book is entertaining, but also made me reflect on my own life. Reading this book during the time of the horrible Colorado forest fires just added to my understanding of the devastation of fire. I can't wait to read the next book in the series with new beginnings born from the ashes. 

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 14, 2013

    I wasn't expecting to give a full 5 stars, but I was drawn into

    I wasn't expecting to give a full 5 stars, but I was drawn into the story and just could not pull out.  Each character made me laugh and even cry and I felt like part of the story.  The heartache all around had me wanting to yell (many times) just TELL them what you're thinking!!  Eventually they all did, and I really enjoyed the process.




    i was not ready for the book to end!  There was even a snippet from the next book Walk On By, and now I can't wait for the story of Eden!  When is it scheduled to come out because I cannot find it anywhere. I will patiently await the next installment... :)

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  • Posted June 5, 2013

    Another Deep Haven novel.  This is one of my favorites. The

    Another Deep Haven novel.  This is one of my favorites.




    The Christiansen family has owned the Evergreen Lake Resort for decades, and their oldest son Darek ("Dare" for short) loves the land, the resort, and his family, that includes his son, passionately.  He has been deeply wounded and angry since his wife died - and is at odds not only with her family, but himself as well.




    Ivy Madison is the new assistant county attorney, a former foster child who has a deep need to belong somewhere.  She is elated to be living in Deep Haven, but experiences some trauma/drawbacks to everyone knowing not only each other's names - but their business as well.  It makes her job much more challenging;  she finds it increasingly more difficult to be objective about matters of the law, when her heart comes into play.




    Darek and Ivy fall in love but through a series of misunderstandings and conflicts of interest are torn apart.




    Susan May Warren is a favorite author.  She crafts a wonderful story that those who are trapped in pain from their past, can find redemption through grace and forgiveness.  I definitely recommend this book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 5, 2013

    Take a Chance on Me is really four stories in all. All four stor

    Take a Chance on Me is really four stories in all. All four stories wind together to tell one beautiful story of faith, family and forgiveness. This story starts with Ivy Madison, the new district county attorney, who has an interesting first encounter with Darek Christiansen, a local handsome, but bitter, widower. As Ivy and Darek lives begin to intertwine, so do the lives of two others.

    Take a Chance on Me is also the story of Jensen, a man deemed responsible for killing Darek's wife. At one time, Jensen and Darek were best of friends, along with Felicity (Darek's wife) and Claire. While Felicity is gone, Claire is not and has stood silently by these two men, grieving in her private way. Are you still with me?

    Ivy, Darek, Jensen and Claire are all grieving - in different ways and for different things. All four of these individuals are struggling with faith and forgiveness. All four of these are considering their future hopes and dreams.

    I don't want to tell you too much more because this book merits a read. Take a Chance on Me is a delightful work of fiction that will capture your heart and speak to everyone one of us. I highly recommend this book to you!

    Please note that I did receive a free copy of this book from Tyndale in exchange for my honest review. All opinions expressed are my own.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 8, 2013

    ¿Are you okay?¿ She nodded. But how could she possibly be okay w

    “Are you okay?”
    She nodded.
    But how could she possibly be okay with Darek’s voice in her head. “He stole my life from me.” And she’d made it worse. She’d kept Jensen out of jail.

    Book: Take A Chance On Me by Susan May Warren, Tyndale House Publishing, 2013
    Genre: Realistic Fiction
    Target Audience: Adult Women
    Subjects: Forgiveness, Love
    Summary: Three years ago both Darek and Jensen’s lives changed. And Ivy’s hand in it was something they knew nothing about. Now she has moved to their small town and is falling in love with Darek and his son. But the past is still affecting their life and the secret of her role in it could end all hope of a relationship.
    Notes: The start of a new series from Susan May Warren, Take A Chance On Me is the first of stories about the Christiansen family. The setting is Deep Haven, as her other novels have been. This story tells the story of two couples as they attempt to overcome a tragedy that shook them all. Childhood friends split apart when poor choices were made and the decisions continue to impact them. It’s a story of healing and forgiveness. I don’t usually give opinions in my reviews, but this is a story I strongly recommend.
    Spiritual Content Recommendation Scale: 5/5
    Reviewer: CTF Devourer

    Colossians 3:13 – Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.

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