Q&A: Jerel Law
Do you ever wonder about the unseen side of creation? The stuff that we know exists but rarely if ever directly experience? Angels, demons, the spiritual world? Pastor and author Jarel Law does. His recent novel, Spirit Fighter, asks the question: what would happen if you could see that unseen world? What would happen if you found out that you were part of that world?
WHAT WERE YOUR GOALS WRITING SPIRIT FIGHTER?
The first goal I had was to write something my own kids would enjoy, and get something out of. I also felt that, if it were published, I wanted to write a compelling story that would communicate some big truths – that God is real; that there is a spiritual world that exists; and that, whether we realize it or not, we are in the middle of a battle between ultimate good and ultimate evil. But in the process of writing, I didn’t think about those things a lot. I started with an idea for a story about a kid who was part-angel and went where it took me.
Getting inside the head of a thirteen-year old kid can be difficult! (I mean, who wants to hang out there anyway?) So I constantly had to remind myself to think—and write—like a teenager. I also have to say, though, that this was one of the most fun things about writing the book.
WHAT ARE SOME EXAMPLES FROM THE STORY WHERE YOU DREW ELEMENTS FROM REAL LIFE?
I have three kids, and although I didn’t pattern Jonah, Eliza, and Jeremiah specifically after mine, there are tons of characteristics they share. I have a really outgoing kid, a freakishly-smart one, one who is exceptionally kind and friendly…the list goes on. And one of the characters is named after my mom! I find that when I write, things from my own life naturally pop up, whether I plan for them to or not.
WHAT DO YOU HOPE READERS GET OUT OF YOUR WORK?
I want them to enjoy the story, first and foremost, because when we are enjoying something, we are more freed up to learn and grow. I want people to realize that everyone is uniquely gifted and that we all have a role to play on God’s side in the spiritual battle. I’d also like readers to be motivated when they read the book to dig into the Scriptures and see what they say for themselves.
WHY DO YOU THINK STORY SUCH A POWERFUL WAY TO COMMUNICATE TRUTH?
I love stories! When told well, they lead you into unexpected places and hit you with deep truth when you least expect it. I love getting wrapped up in a character and a story where there are world-changing possibilities hanging in the balance and ordinary people have to make big decisions. Memorable stories involve the reader emotionally, and when that happens, truth can take deeper root in our lives and hearts.