The controversial label of “Christian Fiction” incites disappointment, argument, favor, and confusion from various professionals in the publishing industry. Debated and dissected on innumerable blogs, the overall genre elicits both praise and criticism.
You might remember last year I conducted a poll which asked a question concerning the opportunity for or the necessity for changes in the industry of Christian Fiction. I received answers from many authors, some editors, and an agent or two, many of whom requested anonymity due to potential backlash for their opinions of the Christian publishing industry.
Although Christians as a whole desire the unity Christ speaks of in the Gospels, we also recognize that these sinful vessels seem to have ample trouble discerning and deciding what is worthy of agreement. For that reason those of us who are serious about our faith desire to be “led by the Spirit” in an ever-increasing measure. I think all of us would be willing to testify and concede to insiders and outsiders alike: “You know it don’t come easy”.
Tomorrow and Friday I will present the results of this year’s Question/Poll which reads as follows:
Whether or not you like or dislike the label, in three sentences or less define “Christian Fiction”.
I’m pleased to say the poll inspired a good number of responses, which is why I will post them over two days, and, as you might imagine, some of the answers were simple renditions and others were much more complicated and filled with innuendo. Of course there is no “wrong” answer and because of these diverse opinions from those within, without, and those not yet directly embraced by the industry it will be plain to see that reaching consensus could be complicated but not really necessary.
Christians squabble over being called “Christians” and take on their favorite alternatives. Likewise they choose new labels for traditional names of all kinds of things and attach their own titles to them, as if a new “label” changes anything or somehow makes them stand for something different. It’s the nature of the beast within us. We often claim the new nomenclatures make us more real, holy, hip, desirable, whatever, when in reality all that truly matters is the role Jesus plays in our lives. Do we allow Him to transform us on a daily basis? Do we work at providing peace between believers and the world without compromising our faith in any way? Do our deployed words elicit a reaction to, an awareness or a revelation of the Lord? Yet most important of all our reasons to define who we are and what we do lies in the single matter of our obedience to God Almighty. I am responsible for my answers to His requests, not yours. And vice versa. Some things to ponder as we head into the diverse answers to this Question/Poll.
Sincere thank-yous to all who participated. I’m very grateful to each of you for taking the time to make your contributions to this poll. They’re valuable.
Father, you know the only way we can come to agreement is through your Spirit. May we all seek to go deeper and deeper in you. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.