A few days ago a man called me from a newspaper. He interviewed me over the phone, asking questions about my book, human trafficking, etc.
Then he mentioned that he'd heard my book, Stolen Woman, was written from a Christian perspective.
"Is that correct?" he clarified.
"Definitely," I said.
Then he paused, and after the silence said, "What . . does . . . that mean?"
I was stunned, unprepared for those four words placed into such a question. What does it mean that I wrote this book from a Christian perspective?
I tried to think of a good answer as the silence extended through the phone. It was not just the things left out that make a book Christian, as some descriptions I've read explain: no drinking, no drugs, no sex. No, it is so much more than that.
It is not just what is left out, but what is put in. For me, writing from a Christian perspective means that Jesus Christ is over all, and in all. Life is incomplete without a relationship with God, and all things in this life should carry His involvement.
Now, I didn't tell the reporter all of that. It went by quickly, but I think I told him about how a trafficked girl needs more than just her circumstances changed. That rescuing her from something bad isn't enough. For many of them, were they to return home, they would not be accepted by their family or community. Or perhaps the person who sold her the first time might sell her again. Being rescued does not always mean being given hope.
So I said that they need not just to be rescued from something bad, but to something good, and in my opinion, the best gift you can give someone is Jesus. Jesus, who will be with her no matter what happens to her in the future. Giving Jesus means giving hope.
I doubt I articulated it very well, but hopefully my point came across.
We have such potential as writers. Because I am writing about trafficking, something people care about, it has given me inroads to relationship I would never have had otherwise. I desperately wanted to be out there rescuing women and children myself. Instead, God has limited me, humbled me, and taken away what once was my identity as someone doing something important. And then, He gave it back. I am doing something important now, but I don’t see it the way I used to. It’s not about me proving my own significance or worth by doing some great thing. It’s about God. And God is graciously allowing me to be part of what He is doing (not the other way around!).
You, as a woman serving cross-culturally, have experiences that most people will never have. It gives you a voice that God can use for wonderful things.
So write. Write for God’s glory. Write from a Christian perspective. And, from my latest experience, I would recommend preparing a ready answer for when someone asks you what that means!
[Editor's note: This is Kimberly's final post. Thank you, Kimberly, for your instruction and inspiration! You keep writing too.]