Saturday, February 7, 2009

It's Saturday and time for Faith 'n Fiction with Amy. Today's question is . . .Today's Discussion: I was reading over at Novel Journey the other day (a great blog, by the way!) and this post caught my eye and just really really grabbed at the heart of what I think is the conflict around "preachy" Christian fiction. So I'm going to take this quote from the quote in the post, and ask you to share your thoughts about this topic.

"Too many Christians think we are supposed to use the arts to give people the answers. We’re not. We’re supposed to use the arts to lead them into a question."
Barbara Nicolosi

What do you think? Do you think Christian fiction should provide answers or lead us to questions?

Here is my answer . . .

This is a real hot button for me. One I don't believe that Christian fiction should have all the answers. It's interesting to me that in good quality Christian fiction like Frank Peretti, Ted Dekker, Julie Lessman, Michelle Sutton, Karen Kingsbury, Brandilynn Collins . . . just to name a few their books seem to give more answers than questions. The books start out with questions, yet lead to answers. At least that seems to be my take on their writing. My real problem with "Christian" fiction is when it's labeled "Christian" and it takes away from the word of God. I don't believe that any Christian author needs to have all the answers for their audience as long as they point their audience to God's word. The moment you change God's word or take away from it, I got a problem with that, and I think we all know what book I am talking about. If you don't just ask me and I'll be more than happy to tell you.


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Interesting. I think early Frank Peretti was like that. But I think his more recent stuff deals more with psychological development. The characters find answers but I as the reader don't always get how they get there. Here is my answer. I guess I considered the psychological/spiritual aspects of it.

Asked or Answered

Good answer, but I don't know what book you're referring to. Please tell ME. Happy Faith ‘n Fiction Day. Here’s my answer:

BTW: your link is defective. Check it out. You might want to relink and delete that one.

I think that Christian fiction should represent the values of Christianity without preaching to the reader. It should entertain the reader without condescending to the reader. I think it's fine if a work of fiction poses questions in the process. I do believe that Christian writers have to tread carefully - there is that line between fiction and confusion or presenting ideas couched in fiction that misrepresent our own Christian values. I do enjoy Peretti, though. Great thought provoking blog
TL Boehm

Holy smokes you listed me with Frank Peretti, Ted Dekker, and Julie Lessman!?! That's cool. :) You know, when I met Francine Rivers she said she would always have a question in her head when she started a story and then she'd let the story answer it for her. That's kind of what I do but I never thought about doing it, that's just how I write. Peace!

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