When people see the term ‘Christian fiction’ they may automatically sum up the book in several ways:
- Jesus is the main character of the story.
- Sermons are poorly disguised in the form of a ‘preacher’ shouting fire and brimstone.
- An unsoiled character with a pure brilliant white halo is the protagonist of the story and has the faith to lift mountains from the earth.
- A chaste, gentle kiss is the hottest it’s going to get (for those of us who love romance)
- Last but not least…boring.
Thankfully, ever since I’ve started doing this show, I’ve yet to come across Christian fiction with some of the authors I showcase that have these sort of elements in them. Although there is nothing wrong with these type of stories. They do have their place.
As I prepared to get ready for today’s show, I looked up the use of halos in art. Other religious and cultural art also used halos to depict a divine person they they sought to portray. The use of the halo in Christian art in times past was first only used for God, Jesus and in some art Mary. Later on, it was used for saints set forth by the Church fathers and other people who made contributions to the gospel. They are to be commended.
But as LeTecia Cunningham said in our show entitled Metamorphosis, Christians need to be real. As art progressed, the call for realism in paintings became more pronounced. For one thing, the halo became cumbersome as sometimes, it would completely take over the person the artist tried to portray. Eventually, the use of the halo declined.
In the same way, Christian fiction for today’s world needs to portray realistic characters that people can relate to. One writer made the observation that sometimes he heathen in the books as just unsaved Christian who don’t know yet. Really? How many Christians came from broken homes, atheistic mindsets, occultism, Eastern philosophies and many more diverse background to fall to their knees and proclaim Jesus as Lord? They’re out there so why do some Christian writers choose not to utilize them.
The call for realistic Christian characters is fiction is real. Alana Terry, author of the award winning The Beloved Daughter, will be chatting with me to see how we can create realistic character in Christian fiction. After all, if Christian don’t wear halos…why are Christian writers making their characters wear them?
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