Perspective by Elizabeth Goddard

Jackson LakeI mentioned in my previous post that this year has been filled with one battle after another. Not just for me and my family, but many others. It seems like everywhere I turn, people are struggling in every area of their lives. Of course, I’m talking closer to home here—life in America. I don’t mean to diminish for one second the kind of struggles that Christians around the world are going through because of their faith. That helps me to keep perspective, and to know that maybe things aren’t so bad. Maybe my difficulties pale in comparison. What am I saying? There’s no comparison. But neither does the knowledge that Christians are being killed for their faith make the struggles of everyday life here in this country something we can simply ignore.
In Christina fiction, as opposed to non-Christian fiction, we often read about characters whose spiritual struggle is an internal battle they wage with God. Blaming God for bad things, or trying to understand why He allows bad things in the first place (ahem. . .free will), or the struggle to trust Him completely, or let Him have control. The list goes on.
This spiritual struggle can reflect what readers are facing in their real lives, and often bring an answer they hadn’t expected. Perhaps the character’s struggle helps a reader to see that they are not alone in their battles. Perhaps the story can even bring comfort to their situation, their soul.
This is the most important purpose of Christian fiction, and the main reason I write Christian fiction—to be a ministry to others. And hopefully, this ministry of words will inspire, encourage, comfort or even convict.
That happened to me today, actually. I was convicted. I’ve been grumbling about my not-so-pleasant circumstance where instead I need to have a thankful heart. I have much to be grateful for.
I happened across a summary of a Bible story in my son’s school curriculum and it certainly put things in perspective for me. The summary talked about Daniel. How he’d been taken captive to Babylon. Lost his home and family. He was given a new name and had to speak a new language. He lived the rest of his life in Babylon.
And yet he continued to remain true to God. He didn’t wonder if God had forgotten him. Daniel trusted.
I certainly don’t have it as hard as Daniel did.
God, I pray that I always remain true to You.

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