Growing up, Shawn Thornton’s life was anything but normal–but
then, so was his mother. After awakening from a coma following a
car crash, Beverly Thornton’s once sweet and gentle disposition
had been replaced by violent mood swings, profanity-laced tirades,
and uncontrollable fits of rage.
Inside the Thornton house, floors and countertops were piled high
with dirty laundry and garbage because Bev was unable to move well
enough to clean. Dinners were a Russian roulette of half-cooked
meat, spoiled milk, and foods well past their expiration dates. A
moment of frustration might prompt her to hurl a knife at Shawn,
his brother, Troy, or their dad or to vehemently cuss them out,
only to shower them with love and affection moments later as
though nothing had happened. On several occasions, Bev even tried
to jump out of the car on the highway while Shawn and his brother
struggled to keep her inside.
Yet this same woman was also a devoted Bible reader, Sunday school
teacher, and friend to the elderly, poor, and marginalized wherever
she went. How the same woman could be a saint one minute and a
nightmare the next was a constant source of frustration for the family.
Then one day, after decades of embarrassing outbursts, a surprise
discovery finally helps the Thornton family come to grips with Bev’s
mysterious condition and brings Shawn to a startling realization that
changes the course of his life forever.
All But Normal: Life on Victory Road
SHAWN THORNTON serves as senior pastor of Calvary Community Church in Westlake Village, California. He is also the Bible-teaching voice heard daily across America on the half-hour radio program All Things New. Shawn has the honor of serving on the board of directors of Awana Clubs International and on the board of directors of the Joni & Friends Foundation. He blogs regularly at PastorShawn. com. Shawn and his wife, Lesli, have three young adult children-Jon, Katie, and Megan.
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