Today’s was titled Preaching: A Voice instead of an Echo, and it stopped me in my tracks. I found the words so profound and so true for those who write fiction from a Christian worldview, but even more specifically for those who write Christian fiction for the CBA market. So I have taken the honorable Mr. Tozer’s words and revised them for Christian writers in general and for me in particular, changing the masculine to the feminine (revised portions in italics).
But Peter and John replied, "Do you think God wants us to obey you rather than him? We cannot stop telling about the wonderful things we have seen and heard."
— Acts 4:19-20 (NLT)
To escape the snare of artificiality it is necessary that a writer of Christian fiction enjoy a satisfying personal experience with God. She must be totally committed to Christ and deeply anointed with the Holy Spirit. Further, she must be delivered from the fear of critics. The focus of her attention must be God and not men. She must let everything dear to her ride out on each novel. She must so write as to jeopardize her future, her ministry, even her life itself. She must make God responsible for the consequences and write as one who will not have long to write before she is called to judgment. Then the readers will know they are hearing a voice instead of a mere echo. (adapted from God Tells the Man Who Cares, 133-134)
Lord, when I sit down to write today, help me to remember that it is You I must please first. Let my words be Your words as I put them on paper. Amen.
There are some who believe that Christian fiction should always be subtle, that it should couch the Gospel in euphemistic terms, never being overt. I believe otherwise. I believe we need the subtle, and I believe we need the overt. Different stories touch different hearts. Writers must write what God calls them to write and never disparage what God has called someone else to write (as long as both are writing Truth).
There is one review source that criticizes any Christian novel that has a conversion scene in it, usually inferring that such a scene is a prerequisite of the genre (i.e. gratuitous). Funny. I have never written a conversion scene because I thought it a requirement of the CBA. Such scenes are simply a natural outflow of the story. It is also a part of the life I live as a believer. And so, despite the comments of said review source, I have never cut a conversion scene if it is a natural outflow of my story any more than I have put one in when it was not. I would rather please God than man.
In the grip of His grace,