Monday, November 14, 2011

So, What Is Spiritual Warfare?

"All people are born into a war. The tragedy is that most do not realize it..." -Pastor Frank Switzer.

As I write a YA Christian Fiction series titled, "The Warfare Club", I had to do some reading through the Bible about what Spiritual Warfare is....and was fascinated to discover much!

In the New Testament, the Apostle Peter warned us:

“Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that the family of believers throughout the world is undergoing the same kind of sufferings” (1 Peter 5:8-9).

Your enemy. We are in a war between good and evil. There is an enemy that we face daily. it is in our best interest to know just who that enemy is before we head into battle.

Paul warned:

"Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might. Put on the full armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore, take up the full armor of God, so that you will be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm..." (Ephesians 6:10-12)

We are told that our war is in the spiritual realm.

General Patton, famous for his war skills, famously shouted on the battlefield as he watched the great Nazi General, Rommel, lose a pivitol tank battle, "Rommel, you magnificent ba****d! I read your book!"

Patton was wise to study his enemy before entering into battle. He knew the strategies of Rommel and, therefore, could use them against him.

We are wise to follow suit.

We learn in Scripture that Satan never stops. He is relentless in his pursuit of God's very own. Perhaps that is because he knows how the story ends: he loses.

Maybe that knowledge ispires the urgency in his pursuits. His time is as limited as his power.

But those of us who know him and his ways do not live in fear of his attacks because we have our own General who not only knows the enemy, but has power over him and has already defeated the enemy for us.

Yes, we enter into the battlefield already victorious because of what Christ has done for us: conquered death.

What does death have to do with anything? Well, death is the one thing that every living thing has yet to conquer. Death is the one thing we all face.....

But because Christ defeated death for us, we who follow Christ do not fear death. Through Christ, we now have eternal life apart from the sin and anguish of the world.

So, as I write about Spiritual Warfare and teenagers facing it, I am reminded that it is wise to know the enemy and how he works. But it is wiser still to know that the enemy is already a conquered foe. Most of all, it is wise to remember who you are in Christ:

I am a child of Christ.
I am an heir of the throne.
I am a citizen of heaven.
I am a conqueror because of Jesus.

Praise God, indeed!!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

What a Day!

I had the pleasure of visiting Arizona Conservatory for Arts & Academics today to talk to them about my book, The Dragon Forest and about the writing process.

What a day it was!!

The small charter school was crowded with all the kids socializing before the first bell. I went to Mr. Underwood's 6th grade class first. Boy, did it bring back memories for me!

6th grade is my FAVORITE grade to teach. They are old enough to learn harder concepts, yet young enough to still respect authority.

I have to admit, it felt great being inside the classroom again. It's been over 2 years. I didn't realize how much I missed it!

When Mr. Underwood introduced me, the kids were so excited. That meant the world to me. I read them a passage from my book, asked them about what I read, and received some great comments. What a treat!

As I later met with the 7th and 8th graders, I was a little nervous because I wasn't sure if this age group would be interested in what I had to say....I was WRONG!

These kids LOVED talking about writing. They were genuine and insightful. We had great conversations all day long!

One thing I noticed, was how respectful they were toward their teacher who was strict yet very kind and sweet.

I am truly grateful to the Lord for giving me the opportunity to talk to these wonderful kids about the joy of writing. I left them with some good tools to use to develop their characters and plot. I look forward to someday reading one of their books!

So, whenever I get down or frustrated with writing my stories....I will remember how fun it was to visit these kids. None of that would have happened had I given up and not finished my book, or if I had given up and not stuck with the long arduous task of getting it published!

Those kids and their smiling faces is enough motivation for me to keep on keeping on.

Just write!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

The Blank White Page

Approaching a pivitol scene or chapter in a book is comparable to the artist facing the blank white canvas or piece of drawing paper.

As an artist, I feel most uncomfortable when I sit before that blank white piece of paper waiting for me to strike it with watercolors or graphite. It can be the most intimidating experience for an artist no matter how confident he or she is with their talent and skill. Once that paint hits the paper...that's it! No turning back.

I usually have the finished drawing or painting in my head...but to transfer it to the paper or canvas is quite another thing.

I find this to be true with writing.

I am in the middle of the pivitol chapter in the first book of The Warfare Club series. And I am most intimidated!!

I have the scene already completed in my head...but to transfer it to that blank white page on the computer screen is quite another thing!

I find that writing, like painting, takes confidence a bit of courage.

I did not feel comfortable calling myself an Artist for many years because I didn't feel I had earned it. After selling several paintings and being commissioned to paint several more, I came to realize that I am, indeed, an artist.

In the same light, I do not feel comfortable calling myself a Writer just yet even though I have a book published through OakTara Publishing and for sale on,, among other sellers.

I do not feel I have earned that title...yet.

So, I have to apply myself, find that confidence and courage, and carry on as I did when I first began painting. I know I will reach that threshold and cross is one day when I hear myself telling someone that I am, indeed, a writer.

Until then...I will have to face that blank white page again tonight. With courage and confidence!

Just Write!

Friday, November 4, 2011

YA Fiction- To Read or Not to Read?

Now that I am into writing the first book of The Warfare Club series, I have learned that it is best to probably read the genre you are writing in order to truly understand your readers.

I have started with reading the Harry Potter series because, although the first three books were written for the middle schooler, the last four books lean more toward YA.

Rowling was brilliant in that she considered her readers carefully. She knew that as her characters grew in the would her readers. She catered to both sets of readers in her series. Great way to sell more books!!

My Warfare Club will only deal with YA, but since that genre deals with both younger and older teens, my readers will also be catered to with my stories.

I plan on reading more YA Fiction to scope out plot development, pacing, dialogue, and character development in the given word count since I am currently dealing with all these issues. I am looking forward to reading what is out there!

So, is it best to read the genre you are writing? With this, my second book series, I say YES!

Remember...JUST WRITE!