I was going to sit and write about my book, about my thoughts on Along the Splintered Path and where I see my writing going. I may still write about some of that here and I guess part of this will be about my writing. But I would like to start with something else.
I will try to keep this short.
I want to state, quite clearly, with the revelations of last week and the mindset that I have, the way my heart feels deep inside, I will not preach to anyone. It is not who I am. It is not who I wish to be.
I think opportunities present themselves to the willing Christians out there who genuinely want to share their faith. I don’t, however, believe that I can approach anyone (especially folks I don’t know) with one agenda: to witness and witness alone. I think (mind you, I think) that witnessing is an important thing, but I also think there is a time and a place and the right circumstances have to be in place in order to do so.
I want to say something that may offend a few folks and if it does, I’m sorry. This is how I feel. This is how my heart feels. There are far too many Christians out there doing nothing to help better the world. Flip that coin over and look at the other side: There are far too many Christians forcing themselves onto people and running people off from the Lord. Neither of these approaches gets the message out there. Neither passiveness nor aggressiveness works.
The Bible says: By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another. (John 13:35)
To paraphrase here: They will know us by our love for one another.
A heavy handed approach rarely ever works these days. Compassion and love and gentleness and understanding do. Yes, I said understanding. Our world is such a diverse place to live in and people are so different in many aspects. We shouldn’t try to change them, but accept people for who they are. Trying to change people is a personal agenda. There are no two ways around it. However, Jesus commands us to love one another and it is that love that leads to understanding.
There is a lot of bitterness toward Christians and rightfully so. Too many Christians either do nothing or are too heavy handed in their approach. There has to be a balance and when there is balance there is opportunity. Find that balance and the journey, I believe, will be that much more rewarding for you.
One more thing and I will move onto something else: If you are a Christian, then your actions will speak louder than your words unless your words are spoken with an angry spirit. Just something to chew on.
The world is a vampire
–The Smashing Pumpkins
Bullet with Butterfly Wings
Welcome to my nightmare
Welcome To My Nightmare
It’s been the ruin of many a poor boy
And God, I know I’m one
House of the Rising Sun
I look inside myself and see my heart is black
I see my red door and it has been painted black
Maybe then I’ll fade away and not have to face the facts
It’s not easy facin’ up when your whole world is black.
–The Rolling Stones
Paint it Black
You know the day destroys the night
Night divides the day.
Tried to run
Tried to Hide
Break on through to the other side…
Break on Through
I hurt myself today
To see if I still feel
Focused on the pain
The only thing that’s real
–Nine Inch Nails
Obviously, these are lyrics to songs, all of which I love. I think lyrics are some of the most powerful words written. Regardless of what the song is, someone (and it may only be one person) will get something from it. That makes song lyrics so powerful.
The lyrics above could be considered dark by many. For me, they are beautifully rendered truths that someone felt as they wrote them.
I said that to echo something a friend of mine said recently when trying to figure out the next step in my writing career and whether to continue writing at all. That friend would be Steve Lowe, my sick-o bizarro writer friend.
AJ – I would have to think that everything you have written reflects a period of your life and what you were experiencing, something that you felt compelled to document and seen through the lens you were looking through at that time. I see nothing to be ashamed about with that.
Several others chimed in with their thoughts, all of them uplifting and giving me some reassurance in, not my stories or my abilities, but what I’ve chosen to write.
I’m proud of my work. I’m proud of the stories I’ve managed to get published over the years. I’m especially proud of Along the Splintered Path, my three story e-book collection. They reflect me during a period of my life and that life, as I’ve said before, is an open book for anyone who wishes to know about it.
Admittedly, I’m heading into a new phase of writing, but let me say this: Horror and Faith can coexist. They have since before the serpent first tempted Eve to eat the forbidden fruit.
I’m a horror writer. That’s the bottom line. I’m a horror writer, and for the last week or so I’ve debated, prayed, and discussed with folks the very idea of writing what I love to write and balancing it with my faith.
I’d like to think my stories are told honestly, that there is truth in the words and actions of the characters. It’s that truth that I enjoy writing about.
It takes a special person to write horror. No, I’m not talking about monsters here. I’m talking about the horrors of the world; the way the world is today. True horror is all about good and evil. Not just good. Not just evil. Both of them and the battle that takes place between them.
There is a lot of redemption in horror stories. The good ones rely on the spiritual warfare going on inside a person’s heart and mind. Good horror reflects on life and the decisions people make. Good horror is truth and it is that truth I wish to continue to bring you. I hope I continue to succeed at that.
Thank you for visiting Type AJ Negative and for reading. There is no greater sadness for a writer than to have no readers.
Until we meet again, my friends…