Now here's a new fresh subject. Well—not really, there are maybe a thousand or so articles in the past year alone on Faith. Is this a fresh new approach? Probably not, but it occurred to me that if, from time to time, I question the depth of my faith, then so do other Christian writers.
Webster describes the meaning of faith as a belief that is not based on proof.
Meaning of Faith to a Christian
• Belief in Jesus Christ
• A relationship with God through Jesus
• Life in the spiritual dimension, trusting Christ to take control of your life.
• Taking God at His word and doing what He says, even when you do not understand all the implications.
• A journey that begins upon accepting Jesus, and continues until you see Him face-to-face in heaven.
I prefer the definition in this beautiful passage in Hebrews 11:1 (NIV) "Faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see."
I am a Christian Fiction writer. Fiction is a strange genre—it's real life with fuzzy edges. No style or beautiful prose in the world can replace emotion and texture. Yes, craft is important, but a reader turns the pages because he can smell pine scent on the air, or feel cold wind on his face. Maybe the reader knows what it feels like to see a pale face…that isn't there looking through a dark window. Without honest feelings and emotions, these are meaningless words on paper.
I became a Christian late in life. I spent many years writing my first novel before deciding to place the word Christian before the word Fiction after my name. Jacqueline McGuyer—Christian Fiction Author. Thank God that first novel never saw publication (not for the lack of trying), God is good. It took more years before my manuscript was "born again". Blood Secrets is due for release in January 2007 by Wings e-Press.
What does all this have to do with Faith? Let's see if I can sum this up in 5000 words or less.
When I was "Born Again", it immediately became obvious that either my writing career was in the dumpster, or I was going to have to make a decision. My view of things had changed dramatically, and the Holy Spirit was nudging me—big time. I put my book on the back shelf…so to speak…but couldn't bring myself to delete it from my hard drive. That was just too much to ask. Actually, that's not what the Holy Spirit was asking.
I am an avid reader. Up to this time in my life, I'd read every single thing Stephen King wrote, along with Peter Straub, Koontz, Grisham, Ludlum, Clavell and many more just like them. Oh, yes, give me murder, psycho thrillers, mayhem, intrigue and I'm happy. I've read many classics as well; I love Henry David Thoreau and Milton.
I went out and bought a load of Christian Fiction books, brought them home and began to read. I hate to admit it I had an awful time getting through most of them. Convinced Christian Fiction is an acquired taste, I bought more—this time I bought the Left Behind series—I couldn't put them down. They were full of action, emotion and texture—I was there. I found other writers, Randy Ingermanson and John Scott Bell. Extraordinarily talented authors—still Christ centered.
I was able to go back and re-read the first books I'd purchased with a different point of view. They no longer seemed so Pollyanna…just not to my taste. I realized God has a plan for everyone. Each of us tells our stories in a different way to a different audience. Yes. Texture and emotion must be there, but the Holy Spirit must be present as well. Our FAITH must guide our pen.
Now I was ready to take my book down from the shelf and begin to rewrite. Now I know what the word FAITH really means. FORSAKING ALL I TRUSH HIM.
Please see my website www.jackimcguyer.com for excerpts from Blood Secrets and my second book The Java Pump.
With every book she writes, it is Jacqueline's ambition to grow and be faithful to her readers. She aspires to give them an entertaining story to dazzle and provide honest and thoughtful information to keep them coming back for more. Above all, she is a Christian and her faith guides her pen.