The wind wailed relentlessly against the windows of the old house. The youngest child gazed unblinkingly through the window into the restless sea. From the mist, a shadow figure began to form and a sharp gasp escaped from the child’s lips. The ghost rose majestically from the mist and danced wildly in the air. Its dark golden eyes pierced straight into the eyes of the petrified child. A high pitched scream slipped from the lips of the child and suddenly the sun peeked from behind the clouds.
The entire world seemed to calm in one soothing motion and a small smile crept unto the lips of the child. The shadowy figure had been replaced by a large white flag. The unknown can seem frightening and ominous at times. In The Last Sin Eater by Francine Rivers, an unknown spirit named Lilybet by the heroine of the story,Cadi Forbes, seems tp the villagers of the town to be an ominous being. There are many theories throughout the town regarding Lilybet. The main thought that is shared between many of the characters in the novel, The Last Sin Eater, is that Lilybet is some sort of “taint” (p.? , meaning ghost. Most believe it is the ghost of Cadi’s deceased sister,Elen. Everyone in the village, other than Cadi, that knows of Lilybet knows that she is not of the physical realm. The way that the villagers react to Lilybet shows that most of them see Lilybet as a portentous character. Many seem to feel that Cadi should push Lilybet away because they think that Lilybet may harm Cadi’s soul. In some ways the character of Lilybet seems to support these thoughts. She is never seen by anyone other than Cadi.
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Also sometimes, Lilybet suggests that Cadi do things her parents and other adults in the village would not approve of. One of the examples of the many of the incorrect views on Lilybet is the views of Gervase Odera,the town healer. She believes that Cadi should “close [her] heart to this Lilybet. ”(p39) The majority of characters in the book share this view. Gervase believes that Lilybet has appeared in Cadi’s mind because of all the hurt that Cadi has suffered. “ I ken you’re sorrowful and hurting for what happened ,dear, but ye mustna let those feelings be a road into your soul. (p39) The fact that Gervase seems to believe that Lilybet has appeared because of the tragedy that had struck in Cadi’s life is supported by the fact when Cadi is asked where she met Lily bet she replies “Above the falls. ”(p. 39) which is where Cadi’s younger sister met her demise. Another example of the incorrect views on Lilybet is Fagan’s view on what Lilybet truly is. From Fagan’s perspective Lilybet does not seem to be a ghost,but that Cadi just talks to herself to sort things out. ”She’s just a little odd.
Likes to talk things over with herself”(p. 197). It is not stated in the novel,but Fagan’s views may be that Lilybet is Cadi’s innocent imaginary friend. When Cadi speaks to Lilybet in Bletsung Macleod’s cottage Fagan explains his “theory “ of Cadi just talking to herself,and Bletsung believes it. The correct view on Lilybet is not outrightly stated in the novel, but it is not what the villagers believe. Lilybet’s true origin is a little more complicated than just an imaginary friend or even a ghost. Lilybet is the Holy Spirit.
When Cadi and Lilybet first meet, it is over the waterfall where Cadi’s sister recently had died. Cadi is contemplating killing herself after her grandmother’s death and Lilybet stops her. Lilybet appears to look very similar to Cadi’s sister Elen. Also Lilybet calls Cadi “Katrina Anice”(p20). This may be because it was what Cadi inwardly, unconsciously wished to be called. Also when Lilybet first meets Cadi she says “My father told me about you…I know everything about you. ” (p21) These two statements are pointing towards God and the Holy Spirit.
The main reason why Lilybet is the Holy Spirit is because of her actions toward Cadi. Lilybet is always pushing Cadi towards Christ,and when Cadi finally receives Christ into her life then Lilybet begins pushing her to faithfully follow Christ. Lilybet gives Cadi lots of advice ,but the catalyst to many of the events in the novel is Lilybet encouraging Cadi to find the Sin Eater. Many times instead of outwardly telling Cadi exactly what to do regarding the sin eater Lilybet advises “do what’s in your heart to do, Katrina Anice.
And do it quickly,for it needs doing. ” In the beginning of the novel Lilybet is the Holy Spirit pulling unsaved Cadi to Christ, but towards the end of the novel Lilybet appears less and less and becomes the Holy Spirit leading a believer in the correct way. The biggest reason that Lilybet appears to be the Holy Spirit is a statement that Cadi makes towards the end of the novel, when she is now older and telling her story to her grandchildren. Cadi tells her grandchildren,earlier, that her mother had called her “my wee l’il bit of heaven”(p321).
After this Cadi says that the name Lilybet sounds similar and was most likely derived from this in her mind as a child. Many speculations are given from the villagers as to what Lilybet may be. Although it is never adamantly stated that Lilybet is the Holy Spirit or even an angel, there is much proof towards that. Regardless of what Lilybet is she is a key part of Cadi Forbes coming to Christ which is a catalyst for others in the village coming to God. This proves that Lilybet is at the very least an excellent thing that helped bring hope to the village.