I rarely respond to critics of my work. For one thing, everyone has an opinion and we’re all entitled to them. One’s opinion is the same as any other’s I guess.
As of late though, I have come under fire by fellow Christian authors (several in fact) who have stated my work is not Christian but pseudo Christian. This attack surprises me for several reasons but for the most part, I find myself in a state of disbelief.
This has caused me to seriously consider exactly why I write and who I write for.
In my new book, The Other Man, I deal with adultery without sugarcoating the act. I delve into my character’s frame of mind and lead the reader into their thought processes where “Should I or shouldn’t I” is considered.
In a world that sees marriage as an antiquated institution in need of redefinition and reform, you would think the Church would grip this subject by the horns and tackle it. This is not to say that there aren’t churches that don’t tackle it but perhaps more books, fiction or nonfiction, need to address the issue head-on. Not just this one but other less savory and controversial topics running rampant through our Church today. Adultery is one of them.
Some Christians just don’t feel comfortable about talking about these things. In fact, their stance is to stay away from them, not let them into the house, don’t give them a breeding ground to rear their heads. To some extent, that is a very good attitude to take. After all, The Bible says in 1 Corinthians 10:13 “There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.”
And trust me, God is faithful to be the anchor we hold on to when we are faced with temptations. He promised He will never leave us or forsake us.
But what about those of us who love the Lord with all our hearts…and we fall into temptation? Not because we were tempted beyond our means but because we wanted to. It didn’t matter we know the Bible verses. It didn’t matter we knew the Lord would be displeased, we WANTED to do it. We like how they made us feel. We were energized by the attention. Our spouses neglected us in some way and so-and-so filled the void.
After we fall, the consequences of our actions scream into our faces and we wished we’d never succumbed. But we did. What about us? What do we do when the preacher preaches that Sunday about ‘our’ sin?
Christians sin because we are sinners saved by grace. No, that does not give us the leeway to sin however we want but while we are in this world, we are harassed by the temptations in this world and of our flesh. My work speaks to this dichotomy inside of us…the darkness of sin that lives within. The light that shines in the midst of this darkness. Sure, I could make my characters holier than thou, never really tried with anything but the barest minimum of struggles with a steadfast faith that endures. I choose not to because I want to be real. Real about the effects of sin. Real about the temptations of life. Real about the redemptive power of God even when we fall. In 1 John 1:19 it says, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness”
The Bible is littered with people who were not perfect. I mean, after the Fall, that pretty much applied to everyone. If we were to look at one person, let’s take a glance at Rahab, the prostitute. Yeah, the woman who sold her body. She shouldn’t be mentioned because of her lifestyle certainly doesn’t land in the ‘holy’ and ‘sanctified’ category. Yet she is and she is of a most interesting lineage. Great grandmother of Boaz, the grandfather of David the King, and ultimately an ancestor of Christ. God doesn’t use perfect people to bring about His will; He uses those who love Him even when they fall because He can pick us back up again, dust us off, and make us new again.
About the Author:
Parker J. Cole is a writer and radio show host who spends most of her time reading, knitting, writing, cooking, and concocting new ideas for stories. Her first novel, Dark Cherub, won Best of Spring Reading 2013 from eMediaCampaigns. She lives in Michigan with her husband and beloved dog Sarah.
Visit her site at http://www.ParkerJCole.com