Response to An Angry Reader

by
Charles Martin

Got this in today's mail:

"I just started Wrapped in Rain and I was quite taken by the story particularly the mental health aspect since that has been part of my career.  You seem to be a moderately interesting writer but then I began to suspect something else and went back to the cover where you are listed as a "Christian" writer.  End of story.  Tossed the book in the bin.  Problem is, you seem to have a lot of storytelling talent but when you start in with the Xtian crap, you lose most of your more educated, and open minded readers.  Why don't you try one novel without such nonsense and I'll bet you'll get more popular among a general crowd rather than the narrow-minded Jesus folk.  If you are satisfied with your limited audience, well there you are."

Dear Reader,

First, can I just say that I'm sorry.  It sounds like some Christian somewhere wounded you.  Please forgive us.  We don't always get it right.  Loving people like Jesus is not easy.  I fail here often.  But that book you threw in the trash is not one of those failures.  My books have a tendency to pick at scabs and that can be difficult for the reader.  I'm not saying I know you or what made you hurt, but the story in my story may speak to and bring healing to the wound you feel.  I wrote it for that purpose: because it's only the love of The Father that can get past the tough, calloused places in us and touch our hearts where they're still tender.  Still feel.  Still laugh.  Still cry.  Still hope.  I'm speaking from experience-- my heart has been hurt, too.  You're right, I have much to learn as a writer and, yes, there's a part of me that wishes I could speak to a broader audience, but in truth, I'm writing for an audience of One.  And His name is Jesus.  If I was sitting next to you and you could trust me enough for five seconds to open your heart and show me the place that hurts, I'd pick my story out of the trash and read it to you.  Letting the words of Mama Ella bathe you as they do me.  There's healing there.  Healing specifically for you.  And, me.  From one broken human to another, please don't let the wound that hurts you rob you of the Remedy that heals you.

I pray The Lord bless you and keep you and make His face shine upon you and give you His peace.

Blessings,
Charles

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