Reading is personal. From the genres we prefer to
when, where, and how we like to read.
I had a friend who read only in
bed. If he wanted to read a book, he crawled under the covers. Other
friends promise me they’ll never go high tech with their books. Give
then the old-fashioned hardback or paperback, a cup of coffee, and a
big comfy sofa.
Other readers I know download
their books to the Kindle or some other electronic reading device.
As readers, we develop a
favorite authors list, waiting expectantly for their next release.
I’ve had people curl their nose
at me when I mention I like reading romance. But you can’t get me
interested in one of my husband’s space navy Sci-Fi books.
Reading tastes vary, opinions
are wide and diverse. Books I didn’t find riveting or wowing will
deeply impact another reader. Books that moved me may not move another.
Reading is personal.
Yet, there’s a wonderful layer
to CBA fiction and stories with a Christian worldview. The storytellers
are infused with the Light of the Creator.
As a writer, I often pray,
“Lord, if I’m found in You and my characters are found in me, then my
characters must be in You, too. What do You want to say?”
Some spiritual messages in our
fiction are clear-cut and unmistakable. Other books have a more
symbolic or cloaked gospel message. I’ve heard editors debate the
how-tos and whys of a book’s spiritual imprint.
Reading is personal. Some don’t
like an overt message. Other readers practically demand it.
But here’s the truth. Our
fiction is a spiritual moonstone.
gemstone, moonstone, is characterized by a shimmer of light, mysterious
and changing as the stone is moved and turned. Light is refracted and
scattered within the stone, so the effect is unique and desirable.
It’s the same with fiction
written by one with a heart after God. His light shines through, is
refracted and scattered between the words, making a unique effect that
stirs every reader differently.
is the beauty of a
Christian-based novel. Whether the message of Jesus Christ is clear or
subtle, His light will shine through.
Jesus knows what every reader
needs. He knows the condition of their hearts, their struggles, hopes,
and dreams. Fiction is one way to reach in with His light and overcome
any area of darkness.
Does reading have to be a
spiritual journey? No. But isn’t it great if somehow our hearts are
touched by Him, ever so gently, through story?
Think about the time you were
reading a novel and a line of prose or dialogue stood out to you. A few
years ago I was reading a non-CBA book by a popular author. She wrote a
beautiful line about the transcendent beauty of the divine, and the
words stuck me so hard, I jumped from my chair and hollered for my
husband. “Listen to this!”
Not only did I love the image
the line created, but I loved the idea that God can be and is reflected
in books. How much more can we find those gems and shimmers of God’s
love from books written by the redeemed.
It’s the moonstone of fiction.
Subtle. Bright. Beautiful.