Welcome, Mesu! This is your third Biblical fiction book, right?
Yep!Earlier today I reviewed your newest book, Love in a Broken Vessel. It's based on the Biblical story of Hosea and Gomer. What is the hardest things about writing a fictional book based in Biblical fact?
Great question! Good fiction must be believable to be engaging, but we serve a miraculous God—and miracles by their very nature are un-believable! What reader, in their right mind, is going to believe a righteous man would forgive his prostitute wife for repeated acts of adultery? Seriously. But the Bible says Hosea did it, so making the Truth BELIEVABLE is the biggest challenge I’ve found. Our God is too big for believable! So making the main characters believable is most important, which means they must be flawed—like you and me. Their lives are messy. Sometimes it’s tough to see a biblical character we’ve idolized suddenly fictionalized to express his doubts, his fears, his sins. For other readers, it’s quite liberating to think even the heroes of faith struggled as we do. At the end of the day, I keep reminding folks…MY BOOKS ARE FICTION! And my goal in writing them is to always stir hearts to a passion for God’s Word.
I can definitely see how making it believable could be a huge challenge. Now, I’ve got to wonder…what has inspired you to choose more obscure Biblical characters like Hosea and Gomer?I NEED to understand God’s Word. It’s a compulsion, really. When I was a kid, my parents and grandparents argued about doctrine, and I thought I’d never come to any real conclusions about my faith. I was wrong. After a few years of serious and systematic study of the Bible as a single story, I certainly don’t know all the ins-and-outs, but I know enough of the history to know my future. And I feel secure in the God Who reveals the Truth to anyone who seeks Him with their whole heart. My first real quest began with the Song of Solomon and ended with the book, Love’s Sacred Song. I wanted to know about the woman who inspired that kind of love in King Solomon—a man with 700 wives and 300 porcupines (I know, concubines—but I’d be a porcupine if I had to be a concubine!). Then I wanted to know Job’s wife’s name, and I wanted to find out from historical documents if she got a bad rap or she was really that surly.
That became my debut novel, Love Amid the Ashes. For the third book, I was intrigued by a prophet who would marry a prostitute of so little renown. Her abba Diblaim was mentioned nowhere else in Scripture, and Gomer seems plucked from the rotten apple tree. Where did she come from? Had they known each other before? Was there anything in Jewish legend that might help shed light on who she was? These are some of the questions that helped fuel my curiosity for Love in a Broken Vessel.
Love it! What is the biggest thing you’d like a reader to take away from Love in a Broken Vessel?
I want someone to turn the last page and know beyond a doubt—“I am not too broken for God to fill with His love.” I think sometimes we hurry to serve, to pour out the love God pours in, but those months I spent on a sickbed taught me that sometimes God simply wants to love us. He doesn’t care what we DO for Him. He wants us to sit still and be filled. Let Him pour Himself in—fill in the broken places, soak up His healing presence. Yes, at some point, He’ll find a perfect use for us “cracked pots” as Patsy Clairmont calls us. But for a little while, let the Lord minister to those broken places. Feel His overwhelming love.
I think that came across very clearly. Do you have another book in the works yet?I do! The Shadow of Jezebel is scheduled to release March 2014 (Revell):
Princess Jehosheba (Sheba) wants nothing more than to please her Baal-worshiping abba, Judah’s King, and his first wife Queen Atalyah, the daughter of notorious Queen Jezebel. But when a mysterious letter from the dead prophet Elijah predicts doom for the king’s household, Sheba realizes her dark skills as Baal’s priestess reach beyond the world of earthly governments. When both light and darkness align, forcing her to marry Yahweh’s high priest, Sheba enters the unknown world of Yahweh’s Temple. Her husband shows her Yahweh’s truth and a love beyond hope, but can Sheba overcome Jezebel’s lingering torment? Can Yahweh use a fallen priestess to shine the unquenchable light of His love to faithless Judah? The Shadow of Jezebel—Meet the woman who saved a king, delivered a nation, and preserved the Light of the World.
Wow, sounds awesome! It’s going to be hard to wait until MARCH! Finally, what’s a random fact about you that most people don’t know?
I eat a whole wheat bagel with butter and honey on it almost every morning. Our grocery store bakery makes THE BEST bagels in the world, and it’s a treat I look forward to every morning! (That and my coffee with French vanilla creamer, of course.)
French vanilla creamer – one of the best! Thanks so much for coming, Mesu.
Back to me... Readers, I encourage you to check out her website: www.MesuAndrews.comNow for the giveaway! Want to read Love in a Broken Vessel? Of course you do …and if you haven’t decided yet, check out this trailer:
Yup, it’s a good book. Read my review here. Enter in the Rafflecopter below! Only United States and Canada addresses, please. Best of luck to each of you!
**NOTE: I'm sorry that it just says "An Awesome Prize" for what you're entering for...I forgot to change that to this book. And I don't want to change the widget now that it has entries! Forgive me, and rest assured -- you ARE entering the right giveaway.**
a Rafflecopter giveaway