Purpose in the Pain
I am so excited to have author, K. Michele Moseley sharing her #LiveChosen thoughts with us today. Be sure to scroll all the way through so you can catch info on her debut novel, Darcara.
In my upcoming debut novel, DARCARA, the main character, Aenya, finds comfort in the beings who once ruled her people. But when they ask her to take up a role she wants nothing to do with, she tries to run.
I won’t deny that this fantasy about ancient beasts and elven magic is highly autobiographical. Our purpose isn’t always what we want it to be. Sometimes we start to build an idea of what we want ourselves and our lives to look like. Letting go can be painful—if we’re willing to do it at all. But not doing so, as I have learned and Aenya comes to realize, has even larger consequences.
A purpose is complicated, often with many factors. For instance, my purpose is to love and serve God, but He has given me specific ways in which He’s called me to serve Him. In my fiction, my ultimate desire is that every reader picks up kernels of truth about God’s love and purpose in their lives, even if they don’t know they’re reading about Him. Those were the kinds of stories I needed growing up, when I didn’t trust God or anyone who followed Him.
Also, as my dear protagonist finds, while we may have been chosen for specific areas of work in the Kingdom of God from before our existence, those don’t always come to light right away. Sometimes we don’t understand we have a purpose until we’re under fire and forced to act. It’s often the most painful of our experiences that confirm there is a need that we are uniquely equipped to fill.
I recently had a woman ask me how writing darker stories benefits the Kingdom. Though asked with doubt and a little disdain, I was thankful for the question, because it made me put the answer to words. The stories I write serve the Kingdom by addressing real-life emotions and frustrations (presented in a fantasy context) and responding to them with hope and redemption. I get to show the love and power of God to those who wouldn't necessarily seek Him out.
In DARCARA, Aenya is loyal to her fear because of the way she’s been treated and what she’s been taught (something I have experienced and am still working through the effects of myself). That fear hinders her ultimate purpose and calling (also my experience). But her love for others and trust in a greater power gives her strength to overcome (as it did for me).
Having experienced deeply painful situations, I have learned that some people don't ever want to look at anything dark again, and that’s okay. But others, like myself, crave to make sense of darkness and find reason and redemption in it. This is what I am called to offer in my stories, and I'm honored to have a calling that provides something I wanted and didn't have growing up—real-life struggle and heartbreak met with hope and redemption in a context that wasn't preachy and doesn’t say “get over it.”
Aenya knows what it was like to have a relationship with a beautiful, powerful force. She also comes to understand what it will cost to lose that, even though following it is the last thing she wants to do. Her purpose comes to light through her pain, but she isn’t in it alone.
When we feel lost, don’t know what we’re supposed to be doing or if we’re qualified for anything, it will always help to look at what is unique about us. We have to dive into what we uniquely have to offer. Often, those things will be found in our hardship and our pain. What hurts us the most? What can we not stand? What can we not bear to lose? Those fires in us were given by God and grown by experiences.
If I hadn’t had the frustration of growing up surrounded by nice, shiny Christian stories that I absolutely couldn’t relate to, I wouldn’t be able to write the things that reach people who are where I have been. If I never had doubts or any of the many other experiences that taught me keeping truth hidden can be so unbelievably poisonous, I wouldn’t have the constant confirmation that revealing it is what I was made for. And those themes wouldn’t be so obvious in my writing.
God redeems all things. But even more amazing is that His greatest shows of redemption come out of the greatest pain. He bridges the widest gaps, heals the biggest wounds, and lights up the deepest darkness. He takes the things that hurt and scare us the most and teaches us how to bring others out of them. God doesn’t let pain go to waste. He uses it to illuminate who we really are. The only question then is if we trust Him enough to take up the call.
Elriyon is a kingdom in peril. Founded in tradition, it has traded wisdom for brute strength and pride. Here, sixteen-year-old Aenya struggles to find her path, torn between the way things were and the harsh realities of the present.
After years of training, she was expected to become an honored member of Elriyon's elite warriors--but she couldn't have been a worse choice. Driven by mysterious visions, Aenya's destiny lies elsewhere. A reckoning is coming to Elriyon, and the truth will not stay hidden much longer.
As the country drifts toward rebellion, Aenya flees from her family and responsibilities. Her desperate search for safety reveals a darkness that is spreading faster than she can run. Soon she finds herself far from home, where something ancient and mighty is stirring.
At a crossroads, Aenya must choose between fighting for her people or finally being free.
If you'd like more info on K. Michele Moseley check out her website.
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