Today, on my Living the Body of Christ Blog, I’m starting a series about the importance of the Church helping veterans who’ve put their lives on the line so we, in the United States of American, can live free from violence and tyranny. These posts were inspired, in part, by the Discarded Heroes series written by Ronie Kendig. Don’t think your fiction writing doesn’t have purpose! Click on the linkif you’d like to read the first of my military ministries series.
In Ronie’s latest thriller, Firethorn, the Nightshade team is scattered and imprisoned by their enemies and Griffin Riddell is in jail for murder. All seems lost until Kazi Faron plucks each from oblivion, her real agenda still in question. A great read! I highly recommend it.
To kick off my series, Ms. Kendig agreed to an interview to tell us what moves her to write such compelling stories.
Ronie, what types of books do you most enjoy to read?
I suppose a traditional answer would be the stories that satisfy. There is nothing more frustrating than to read a book that disappoints. As for my favorite types: I’m a big fan of thrillers like Robert Liparulo and love the Dekker/Lee collaborations. I also really love Dystopian books (not the vampire ones, but those that are stories of triumph over bleak futures). And I also love to read speculative, though I’m a little more picky with those. My favorite speculative authors are Stephen Lawhead, Kathy Tyers, and James L. Rubart.
How does your faith impact what you write?
My faith is a part of who I am as much as my Irish heritage is, so it will inherently impact it. I may write a book that is not overtly Christian, but the faith and the victory of good over evil will always be there.
What inspired you to write the Discarded Heroes series, and what do you want readers to get out of it?
The Discarded Heroes was inspired—at first—by a true story of a Navy SEAL whose life and marriage fell apart because of his anger. Seeing that family disintegrate, seeing the prayers that seemingly didn’t work. . .it broke my heart and convicted me—I knew in that instant upon hearing the wife asking for prayer that I could never again write about our military heroes without showing the toll it takes on them and their families. Thus, the Discarded Heroes arose. . .and with it, the only mission: to open dialogue.
As I’ve told you, your stories have inspired me to be more aware of the needs of our members of military and their families. What do you see as the greatest need that is most neglected by “the church” (meaning body of believers)?
In general, I think the local churches need to reach out more. The military mindset is very unique and one that ingrains pride and tough-as-nails attitudes, so asking for help isn’t the easiest thing for them to do. Wives and children are often left alone in strange environments (on or near bases and away from their families), and they really need the tangibility of God’s love (through hands-on help) in their lives.
This group came to me and said they thought we could work well together. I agreed. And I did so to bring awareness to this amazing organization that is putting action behind their support. They are sending support packages to troops, both at home and abroad. I’ve been going through a really tough time lately, and in the midst of all this, I’ve wondered who truly cares. But my battles are nothing compared to our soldiers, veterans and wounded. They need to know we’ve got their back. They put their lives on the line, we can put action to our words and packages in their hands to let them know someone cares.
Well, you’ve inspired me. And I hope this series will inspire more people, both individually and within the church, to engage with members of military, helping them as they fight for our freedom, and from the effects of that fight when they come home. To see more about these effects, and how we can help, check out my series on LivingtheBodyofChrist.blogspot.com.
Thanks again, Ms. Kendig!!!
Military Charities and Ministries:
Soldiers Angels—Angel volunteers assist veterans, wounded and deployed personnel and their families in a variety of unique and effective ways.
Military Ministry—A part of Campus Crusade for Christ, dedicated to equipping military members and their families to prepare and heal from the traumas of war, both mentally and spiritually.
Please comment below and tell us how YOUR church is helping members of military?
At the Edge of a Dark Forest