A blogging fuss, an alarming trend, and my own predictable skid.
These past few days, Christian bloggers seemed to have lost the ability to choose an original topic. Scores of creative minds, all at the same time, addressed a particular subject. It didn’t come from Scripture, though I'm sure some wisdom from the Word eased its way in. No church movement demanded the united efforts of Christ-centered writers. The increasing severity of persecution around the world couldn’t inspire such single-minded consternation. The attention grabber, the issue challenging the keypads of blogging Christians, was a movie.
The book the movie is based on stirred some fuss as well, but not like this. A movie premier is in your face. It’s on your TV. It’s something to see. An event to spark a reaction.
And this one got it. Not just from our hedonistic society, but from the Christian community. I didn’t know much about the book or its offspring of a movie, so I picked a blog from the many that used rhyming words like “Nay” or “Pray” in the titles. Just one. I opted out on getting fifty opinions of the same sin. The blog I chose was written by Albert Mohler. He started by implying the release of the movie is more serious than most Christians realize. He ended with a call to unify what is good and true and beautiful in our hearts and minds, and in our bodies.
I agreed with Mohler’s warning that we need to be aware of the changing level of acceptance regarding what is nothing less than pornography. But I still wondered why so many Christian writers had to shovel more publicity onto the heap for this movie. I get the point—it’s not good for me. I don’t need repeated expositions. But…maybe someone else does.
Pornography is an attack on our senses and our souls, even among Christians. It's been an issue primarily for men, but this new wave of perversion to God’s good plan targets women. So maybe it’s not hard core. Maybe it’s just romance. The title is intriguing. The commercials are practically enchanting. Like a fairy tale. That’s what women want, right? I don’t know how this story turns out, but I’m betting the girl's Prince Charming is a wolf.
One night I’d had enough of Christians begging me to boycott a movie I had no plan to see, so I turned off the computer and settled in with my Prince Charming to watch the news. And, of course, the news was all about the movie. The premier. The crowds rushing to buy tickets. And then there was the author. She sat before an assembly of fans. They came with their copies of her book and she signed them. She didn’t look like a porn proponent, just an average woman with a smile on her face. And fat wallet in her purse. I didn’t know how fat until the news anchor told me. A hundred. Million. Dollars. Off the sales of one book.
My jaw dropped. I’d spent the day going through first-round edits on my second novel. My debut novel, so far, is not a bestseller. My wallet’s not a whole lot fatter than it was before I was blessed to get a book published. For a fleeting breath of a moment, I considered the sheer waste of time and energy I’d devoted to Christian fiction. And I pondered an abrupt end to my effort.
I lifted my head from Prince’s shoulder and said, “There aren’t many things that make me want to quit. But that does.”
He rubbed my arm and encouraged me. And God caressed my spirit and reminded me of my calling. I have something to write about. It’s not popular, but I try to make it entertaining. It doesn’t often result in prosperity, but that’s not my goal. It’s just that for a minute I wondered why people loved her book when she has nothing to offer but sin.
Oh yeah. It didn’t take me long to get it. She supplied what the people wanted. That’s who they are. It’s who we once were and sometimes we slip back. So I suppose God had His hand in packing the Internet with all those movie-bashing, sin-revealing, sanctifying blogs. Some of us must have needed it. As for me, my sin was much simpler. I just wanted what she got. A bestseller. Maybe a little recognition for a darn well-written novel.