Why We Must Be Forthright

 I’ve heard more than one writer say, “I’m sneaking Christianity into a book for the general market!”

Wanting to reach the unsaved is a wonderful mission, but in my opinion, sneaking (and I’m not kidding when I say authors actually use this verb) Christianity into books isn’t the way to do it.

Why not?

Well, for one, that’s not the example Christ set. True, He did challenge those who tried to trick him with lose/lose questions, but He never misled anyone about Himself.

Put another way: what if you were enjoying a story about a nice young couple falling in love. They had overcome several obstacles to their romance and you were looking forward to his marriage proposal. Then on page 269:

“Lucinda, I trust you worship the god ChocolateIsBadforYou.”

“Why, no, Peter. I worship the god ResponsibleFarming. And so must you, or we will both be banished to the Land of GlutenFreeFood forevermore!”

Peter beat his chest. “No! No! No! Why, oh why must it be so? Now all of us, including our readers, are doomed!”

As it is, we Christians look about this silly to some people who don’t worship the Lord. Do we really want to waste any good will and credibility by trying to dupe readers — saved or unsaved — just looking to escape into a well-written novel?

One way or another, a Christian writer’s world view will permeate her writing. Some of us choose to write boldly for our market. Others among us write for the general market. Either way, we must respect our chosen audience. Christ will do the rest.

Your turn:

What is your favorite general market book that portrays Christian values?

Do you write for the general market? What tips can you offer?


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