Truth Dearer Than Fiction (The Real-Life Characters of "Gone With The Wind")

Truth can indeed be lovelier than fiction. 
The real story cannot be captured in neither a book nor a movie. 
An inspiring story like this will not easily sell two million copies without the sensational ingredients of immorality and scandal. 
Yet, no price tag can be put on the reality of torn lives that are transformed into peaceful ones. 

"Come back to Tara... to Scarlet and Rhett and the greatest love story in all fiction..." These are the written words on the back cover of a book that has become one of the most successful, best-selling novels. 

The book Scarlet, penned by Alexander Ripley, is a sequel to the classic novel Gone with the Wind. For more than fifty years now, this legendary love story has continued to bewitch hopeless romantics who clamor for a sequel. Ms. Ripley, who was personally in love with the novel, decided to write her dreams down in a book. 

The reviews were glowing. People magazine claimed that it was "fun, entertaining, absorbing." Newsweek declared, "Best of all, Rhett is the same dashing heartthrob women everywhere have swooned over..."

What many people do not know is the original novel was not made up of merely dreams. It was based on real people who lived similar lives to the novel's characters. Many are unaware that the real Rhett Butler was no longer the same dashing heartthrob whom women swooned over. He had become something better. 

Rhett Butler in the flesh was a man named Rhett Turnipseed while the real Scarlet O' Hara was called Emelyn Hannon by her family and friends. It was true that Rhett really walked out on her and joined the Confederate Army. 

After the Civil War, Rhett became a drifter and a gambler, and he ended up in Nashville. Tired of an empty life, one Easter morning in 1871, he attended a Methodist revival meeting where he accepted Jesus Christ as his personal Lord and Savior. Soon after, Rhett entered Bible School and became a Methodist preacher in rural Kentucky. 

What about Scarlet, did they meet again? Yes, they did. The Turnipseed family historians tell this story: 

A young woman in Rhett's congregation ran away and rumor had it that she went to work in a prostitution house in St. Louis. True to his pastoral calling, Rhett searched for her.

He finally found the woman in brothel but the Madame of the house would not let her go. Later on, Rhett learned that the Madame was really Emelyn Louise. Their friendship was renewed. 

The young girl under her was soon taken out of the flesh trade. Eventually she married and became the matriarch of a leading family in the estate. 

After her encounter with Rhett, Emelyn left prostitution and accepted the Lord Jesus Christ. She opened an orphanage for Cherokee children. She died in 1903, with her grave marked to this day. 

The stories of Rhett Butler and Scarlet O' Hara are true. Real miracles do happen and are available to those who surrender their lives to the great Life-Changer, Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior. 

The Word of God says in 2 Corinthians 5:17, "Therefor, if any man is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old things passed away; behold new things have come."

You, too, can experience this life-changing power. Surrender your life to the Lord Jesus Christ. He best knows how to run your life. He has the whole universe at His disposal to make your life beautiful.