Fault: A Christian Band's Tale is a new Christian fiction novel project I'm currently developing. This is a book trailer for that project.
Supervillains in 1935? Why not? This is an excerpt from one of my works-in-progress, a Mindfire prequel called Unto Dust. It's a Christian fiction superhero time travel novel. The antagonist will be causing problems for the heroes, Crusader and The Cat. This scene is a lead-in to that situation.
MCCLURE, TEXAS - NOVEMBER 1935
Bill DeFarr had made it into this little town around twilight with its pretty Main Street. McClure seemed pleasant enough, like a good place to raise a family. He had begged a few coins off a nice-looking couple and used that to buy a sandwich. All he needed was a good spot to sleep.
Then he saw her. Or was it her? She looked like Susan, his wife of so many years ago, with her long brown hair tied up in a bun. But who was that man she was with?
Bill bustled forward towards the man who was wearing a black and white suit. The woman wore a long green dress.
“Hey! You two!” Bill cried out.
The couple froze and the man narrowed his gaze. He stood directly between Bill and the woman in a protective stance. “Hey buddy, we don’t want any trouble!” the man said. The woman held her hand near her mouth and looked frightened.
“Susan, is that you?” Bill asked, ignoring the man.
“Who’s Susan?” the man interjected, regaining Bill’s attention. “My wife’s name is Mary.”
“Don’t tell him that!” she whispered at her husband.
“If it’ll get him to leave, I will!” he said at full volume, not hiding his irritation.
“You look like Susan, my wife…or she was my wife,” Bill declared to Mary. “Where’s Billy?”
“Billy?” the other man asked in an agitated voice. “Who on Earth is Billy?”
“Our son. We have a son named Billy.”
The other man, who was a few years younger and stronger-looking, grabbed Bill by the shoulders angrily. “Look pal, I think we’ve listened to you long enough. You’re scarin’ my wife and you stink! Get outta here before I paste ya one!”
Bill was not easily intimidated. His mouth curled into a smile as he lifted his right hand to his side. He extended his fingers and caused flames to encircle them. “I’ve taken shots from bigger guys than you,” he boasted. “And you’re in my way.”
I have many expectations of Christian fiction, whether it’s my own or some other author’s work. And I think that’s fair. It’s a relatively small genre in a big literary world. And there’s lots of competition. So, to me, if a book, short story, or novella is labeled as “Christian fiction,” it should live up to the name.
There’s a big difference between “clean fiction” and “Christian fiction.” Now, Christian fiction should also be clean fiction (no swearing, no overt sexual scenes). But clean fiction is not always Christian fiction.
Simply put, Christian fiction needs (Jesus) Christ in it.
I believe Christian fiction should show a non-believer the difference that accepting Jesus Christ makes in the life of Christian. For example, one way is by showing how the Lord took a spiritually broken person and saved/redeemed them. The reader should see the hope and joy that Christ brings. They should see that Christians are human, we certainly make mistakes sometimes, but Christ gives us the Holy Spirit to help us resist sin and live for Jesus. For that reason, I believe Christian fiction should be for non-believers first; it should have something believers can enjoy and learn from, too.
I hope to see more Christian authors take a stand for Christ in their written works. That comes with some risks but also rewards.
In Matthew 6: 6 (KJV) Jesus said, And blessed is he, whosoever shall not be offended in me.
In my opinion, this is not a time to be fearful of what others think; the truth of the Gospel stands. It isn’t time to restrict our faith in these works of fiction. Shouldn’t the glory of Christ be the highlights of our stories? Otherwise, what makes these tales stand out as Christian? I’d like to encourage my fellow Christian fiction authors to lean even more on the Lord for inspiration and courage. He can provide more than we could ever ask for.
Matthew 28: 20 (KJV) reads, Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.
In conclusion, I believe that labels should mean something. And in my view, that’s especially true for Christian fiction. We can all improve. I believe that, as Christian fiction authors, we should be striving to do the Lord’s will and share His goodness and love through our writing. Conflict is a part of every story, but Jesus will always be the answer to life’s problems, no matter what they are.
About the author
Allen Steadham is a nondenominational Christian. Happily interracially married since 1995 and the proud father of two sons and a daughter. He and his wife have been in the same Christian band since 1997. He plays electric bass, she plays strings, they both sing. It's all good.
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