Breaking Light: Birth of a Hero

Breaking light cover

Cover for Breaking Light, photo by Mark Metternich

Carl’s next booktitled Breaking Light: Birth of Hero, is now shipping from Amazon or available from him in person.. The book is Christian fiction story set in the year 2032. Then again, maybe I’m playing with the reader. The tagline, or what some would call the elevator clause, is: What happens when a small community of believers risks everything to change everything.

Really, writing this book has been a very wonderful and fun experience. The entire book has been authored now (and it looks like it may spill over to more books). One of the editors (whom I shall call my co-pilot), went very creative with me on her edits. I’m not complaining – she’s very, very brilliant and I love her ideas.

One interesting story will illustrate an issue I experienced. I actually started this book back in the seventies but stopped when it seemed the protagonist was doing a lot of running around but not getting the mission he had been given done. He was committed to the mission, it was just that everything he did seemed to lead to a dead end.  This went on for over three chapters. I was about ready to email another fiction author that had already helped me and asked her what she did in a case like that.Should I take those chapters out, or backtrack and rewrite?

The answer seemed to come from God without sending an email to anyone. If I was frustrated at how the story was going, think how frustrated my protagonist is. Moreover, think how often all of us are frustrated when God gives us a mission and we don’t see any way of even getting to the first base.

The solution was to identify my own frustration with the dead end path of the story and project it into the narrative through the feelings and actions of the protagonist. Poor Ken: depression, anxiety, anger, stress and you name it. In the book we see him sitting with Lorraine in a cafe; and Lorraine is trying to lead him out of this. Ken shares with Lorraine that he is lost as it relates to his mission. He has no “place”, he doesn’t see that God is doing anything. How many Christians do you know at a point in their life like that? Lorraine is telling him that God is working even they don’t see it. Think of the Israelites as they stood at the Promised Land. God wants Ken to see that place,  that Ken has place and God is working through him, even if he doesn’t see it. If he prays and asks God to show him where God is working God will show him because God wants Ken to see it. God will reveal it. They pray together asking God to show this to Ken.

I continued on with the book. Nothing seemed to be revealed to Lorraine, to Ken, or even to me – and I’m the writer! Several chapters later God showed me how everything fit together and led to an incredible experience in the narrative. God had been working and I hadn’t seen it in the story. I didn’t have to rewrite anything in those early three chapters. It was all there.

Now the interesting thing is that this fictional story played out in my own life in reality 2009 as I lunched with a lady. I was”Ken”, lost to place. We were eating in a restaurant. She spoke the very words Lorraine spoke to Ken in the book. This was the most powerful dialog I have ever had with anyone. In other words, this book really isn’t fiction or fantasy. All the stories in the book are true, I just shifted the time line to play a game with the reader.

Last week I prayed with the collected group of pastors in my church. They asked me how to pray for the book, and now I ask you to pray with me in this.

  • That God will be glorified in the story.
  • That Jesus will be lifted up in the story.
  • That the Holy Spirit will anoint the story.

I think it is pretty exciting as I talk with people about the weird characters. It’s a very revolutionary story.

Signs of Hope – 4

A few weeks ago I lunched with a nurse (RN) at Sweet Tomatoes. This took most of the afternoon; but it was a delightful lunch and we could return to the buffet table again and again as we munched out way through the afternoon. She shared with me a project with which she was involved. In just a few days, they would open the Colosseum in Portland for one day to people in the city who were poor, had little income, and had medical needs. Medical professionals from the city’s churches – doctors. dentists, nurses – all planned to donate their time that day to work to help these people with their needs. Someone (she didn’t know who) had donated the money to rent the facility for the day and the massive work needed to set up for the day (she was also involved in the setup). The project requires generators, medical equipment, and lots or preparation in which she was already involved. She was very excited about the community and networking that was birthed out of this Church in a community sense meeting the needs of the people.

Servant LeadershipMoreover, this was being done four times a year, each time at a different place in the city. Later this Fall she’s involved with them again with a similar even in the Southeast part of the city. Next Sunday I mentioned it to my pastor on the west side of the city, only to discover a similar event was scheduled for October 1 on the west side. It was all over the city, and not just medical needs, but also housing and human trafficking issues (prostitution, sexual exploitation). The organization is Compassion Connect, the web site is at http://compassionconnect.com/. Here on the west site of the city we have Compassion Beaverton.

Is this being done in other cities? Where?