Could You Love This Genderless Person?

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WARNING: Adult material (sexuality and homosexuality)

Please don’t read ANYTHING I say below out of context.  Please read the whole article to get the gist of what I’m trying to say.  At some points, I’ll go heavily into speculation, so bear with me on that.  I’m just thinking “out loud” here.

This article is not a recommendation list.  I mention these dramas to prove points in this article.  Watch all things at your own risk.  

 

Many of you know I’m fan of Korean (and some Taiwanese) dramas.  On the whole, the evidence that South Korea is a primarily Christian nation shows in their TV.  The dramas I watch tend to be BBC-type 16-20 episode stories – wholesome, modest and have basic Judaeo-Christian values.  Creative, formulaic, and pleasant, they appeal to me much more than our overly sexualized, bad-language-ridden, or just immature American TV.  I like live-action Korean dramas much more than anime even.  It fits my personality and story style.

However, in the last couple years, I’ve been sorry to see the experimentation Korea – and Taiwan – are taking in gender fluidity.  While out and out gay couples aren’t shown – as Korea, thankfully, has not accepted such things yet – I think it’s only a matter of time.  😦

The trend is “gender bending.”

It’s nothing new, really.  We did it in the States – for KIDS – in Mulan.  Japan’s done plenty of it.  Matter of fact, there’s been a transgender individual in almost every Japanese show I’ve seen, which is why I don’t like live-action Japanese TV. Just about every time I watch what would normally be a family-friendly G-rated show, there’s a cross-dresser. They’re inundated with it over there in Japan.

It concerns me that I see it coming to Korea.

Gender-bending shows, like Coffee Prince, You’re Beautiful, Hana Kimi, and the latest, Taiwan’s Bromance, are fan favorites internationally.  In all of these shows, heterosexual, beautiful girls dress up like boys and live or work among men due to various reasons.  None of the reasons make a lot of sense, and all seem to be very contrived, but thus lies the problem in romantic comedy (rom-com) plots: got to create some unbelievable circumstances to force the couple to be together.  In Coffee Prince, she needs a male-only job to make more money for her family.  In You’re Beautiful, she has to sing in a male k-pop group in her miscreant brother’s place.  In Hana Kimi, she infiltrates a boys’ only school to convince her idol to get back into track and field.  And, in Bromance, a fortune teller told her parents she would have bad luck unless she pretended to be a guy until her 26th birthday.  All pretty lousy reasons to fake masculinity, if I do say so myself.  😛

Can you tell which one is the female in each?

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In almost all of these shows, with the exception of You’re Beautiful where he knows she’s a girl, one of the leading men in the story – Mr. Macho Masculinity himself – falls for our boy-girl not knowing she’s a girl.  Mr. Leading Man is staunchly heterosexual, and is surrounded, usually, by a cast of other handsome males whom he has never had feelings for.  His affection for the weakling, feminine-faced new guy (our cross-dressing girl) confuses the living daylights out of him.  And, at some point, he has to accept “being gay,” or at least looking like it, in order to embrace his deep love for the girly-guy, who must exude some sort of strong feminine pheromone, even though the entire world can’t tell her gender.

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Now, if you’re a straight male reading this, you’re cringing.  I don’t know a single guy who’d say that his ideal love story involves falling for his best guy friend, whom he didn’t know was female.  It insults men on every level.  And the guys in the dramas are hurt.  They’re hurt when they think they’re becoming gay over their bestie.  They hurt when they found out how deeply she’s lied to them.  They’re broken down, confused, and hung out to dry.  It’s painful to watch.  Yet they get back up and keep loving her.

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This stuff hits women hard in the warm fuzzies. 

And I started to think about why. I’m convinced there’s a much deeper spiritual longing going on here.

As “Occupiedterritories.tumblr” said, in a Coffee Prince exposé,“K-dramas depict love as an overwhelming totality so ecstatic that it transcends just about everything and approaches the realm of the metaphysical.  Love transcends not just sexuality (which it embraces and folds into itself) but, more precisely, sexual identity (which it dissolves and makes moot).

Because our male leads haven’t fallen in love with a woman.  They haven’t fallen in love with a man.  They’ve fallen in love with a genderless soul: what is assumed to be a person at their deepest core.  Many of them swear off sex, because, as heterosexual men, the thought of sex with their “male” lover revolts them.  Instead, there is a chasteness to the relationship that is rarely seen on TV (or in real life!)  Except for a kiss or two, they bond on a much deeper level – one of friendship, camaraderie, and dedication.

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A woman wants to think that, at her least attractive – even looking like a man –  that her personality, her friendship, and her soul would be desirable enough to change a man’s sexuality.  That he could get past anything to love her.  That it’s not really about sex at all.  That it’s not about her body at all.  In a culture that tells you you have to be a certain cup-size, a woman wants to think that a man will love her if curves and a female reproductive system don’t exist at all.  That he loves her deepest soul – a part of who she is that makes her unique, individual, and transcends her physical self.  

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Every woman’s dream.

Every human being’s dream really.

All of us are looking for a relationship, love, and passion that cannot be attained on earth.  Even the hardest, coldest, bad boy needs to feel like he’s loved for who he is – even if that lover is him loving himself.  We look for it in many, many places, but, most popularly, in other people.

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Human beings are sinful.  They’re selfish, physically-oriented, small-minded, and weak.  We get sick, we die, we change our minds, we reject, we abuse, and we distort.  We’re not telepathic and we see the world only through our own eyes.  Our understanding of the spiritual worth of a human soul is limited at best.  And, when we find out the ickiest and nastiest about people, it tends to turn us off from that person.  People “fall out of love” every day, with divorce rates at its highest in the last decade.  Bullying is impossible to avoid in most school and work settings.  Finally, more and more, human beings are turning to experimenting sexually, with homosexuality being at its peak in the U.S., with experts guessing at around 10% of the population.

I want to say, firmly, that I stand with the Bible that homosexuality is a sin.  It isn’t natural, it isn’t something you’re born with that you can’t choose to avoid, and it is wrong in God’s eyes, Biblically.

The gender-bender premise is dangerous. In an effort to spiritualize love, like we should be doing, we fall short when we take God-created gender out of the equation. Instead of being a squeal-worthy comedy-fest of true heterosexual love succeeding against the greatest of odds, gender-bender shows introduces dangerous new ideas, like:

  1. Myth: Men don’t appreciate femininity. Women should shake off things that make them female, and should strive to be just like men.  Androgyny is more attractive than embracing the way God made us.

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I have had many guy friends in my life, yet I am one of the most girly people I know – all of my friends will tell you that.  I’ve never upset a guy because I was girly.  I truly think most think “viva la difference” between us.  They like my perspective, and I value theirs.  A girl once told me that my husband needed a tomboy girl – one that played basketball with him, didn’t wear makeup or jewelry, and stuck to blues, grays, and masculine clothing.  He couldn’t possibly appreciate a pink-loving, girly-girl.  Well, turns out, this is the same man who buys me new high heels every year, and likes seeing me in skirts, and long hair dyed pink.  He said it would be pretty boring if I was just like him.  No matter how you dress, your husband married a woman because he wanted a woman!

God created us to complement eachother.  That’s “complement,” like being an opposite matching puzzle piece.  I’m not sure if you’ve had close friends of the opposite gender – although you should have one if you’re married!  The bond can be strong, coupled with the fact that hormones were created to get in there and add spice to the pot that doesn’t exist with same-sex friendships.  It’s so easy to let your relationship with the opposite gender get too close and go too far.  Why?  Because we’re created to be close like that.  We’re created to have ONE spouse, of the opposite gender, who complements, intrigues, attracts, and interests us.

I sure love my girl besties, but none of them will ever compare with the bond I can only achieve with one man.  There’s just something about it.  God created it.

  1. Myth: Gender doesn’t matter.

People want to claim that gender and sexuality matters as much as a pair of shoes.  Wear one pair today, toss ‘em and change to something else tomorrow.

But it seems that gender is intrinsic to our personality and soul – much more than human beings would like to admit.  Even God identifies SOLELY as a He.  Jesus was clearly born male, and He still sits at the right hand of God – male.  And God the Father is inherently male.  Father = male.

Once I heard someone wonder if we would be genderless in heaven.  The concept sat very badly with me.  Maybe I don’t have much of an imagination, but I can’t see how I’d still be RJ Conte in heaven without being female.  Even if my heavenly body isn’t as physical as this one, I think that, if God is male, I will still be female.  God could totally do something miraculous and create new genders or abolish them, but we see no precedence for this in Scripture.  We see commands to embrace our maleness if we’re male, and our femininity if we’re female. We see different roles, different strengths, and even occasionally different commands for males and females, husbands and wives.  We hear of dead people and angels referred to by gender.

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I think we wonder about gender in heaven because there will be no marriage.  I personally don’t think that means there won’t be gender.  There’s no need for marriage, because intimacy in heaven will be complete.  No sexual act with a spouse here on earth will compare to the spiritual – and perhaps physical, mental (telepathy, anyone?), and emotional intimacy we will have with God and other people in heaven.  Marriage will seem like a cruder, less effective method of trying to bond with people.  What about when you can know them completely in a new form?  What about when every moment in God’s presence is pleasurable? Sex will be pointless.  Can you imagine being intimate with God? 

 

I think that’s the point of our pitiful attempts to create the perfect love story.  It can’t compare to the love of God.  He loves our very soul.  He inhabits our body.  He embraces and partakes with us of our emotions. He knows every single thought we’ve ever thought or will think. He doesn’t care what gender we are – His love is the same.  He died for us.  He is the ultimate author of passion.  He is the ultimate lover.  He fills you from the inside out.  He defines your true worth.

There is no intimacy like being inhabited by Christ. 

There is no intimacy like knowing the God of the universe and being known.  Like being died for.

You’re just not ever going to find that in a human man.  Even if you dress up like one.

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RJ Conte writes about love and the Christian life for young adults.  Her latest novel, a romantic suspense, will be released in February on Amazon.com

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Cover for The 12th Girl in Heaven!!!

My darker, boldly realistic 18+ fairy-tale retelling is due out June 6th!  (No sexual scenes, and the content is discussed in a moderate and appropriate way for college-aged and above.)

Come join the Facebook party! Click here! The last one was a hit!  85 people RSVPed, and many popped in and out and had a blast!  The party for 12th Girl will be held at 1 PM pacific time, so, earlier in the day, and will only go for two hours.  Come and earn prizes – like a beautifully handmade bag, jewelry, and even a gorgeous tiara.

Fight drug use and trafficking!  Help by buying a copy of The 12th Girl in Heaven, when it comes out on June 6th.  25% of all proceeds go to REST Seattle (anti-trafficking, Christian organization!)

To see the damage drug use does to the body, click the picture below:
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This is the last of the two novellas I’m putting out this year.  In August, I plan to release a short story for free.  Stay tuned for that.

And now, without further ado, the cover for The 12th Girl in Heaven!

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Instead of 50 Shades, Read This

ADULT POST.  WARNING: Sexual content

I’ve got to jump on this passionate bandwagon against Fifty Shades of Grey, for all of the same reasons most of you other Christians are doing so.  I’m against erotica, especially when it portrays abuse as sexually appealing.

Like the other campaigns starting, I support #50dollarsnot50shades and am currently writing a novella that takes the classic fairy tale of The Twelve Dancing Princesses, and brings it to modern day.  I cover sororities, clubs, alcoholism, and even touch on trafficking.  In a world where women are *still* subjecting themselves to abuse, men are not attempting to be anything beyond physical lust monsters, and we are living in a world fraught with divorce, affairs, and multiple relationships, sex trafficking is growing.  Especially right in my area of Seattle, Washington.

I support R.E.S.T. (Real Escape from the Sex Trade).  Tonight, in Seattle, a thousand girls and women will be exploited for sex.

Therefore, in my own personal campaign against Fifty Shades of Grey, and in my endeavor to write a book that warns older teens about the temptations they can face in college and the real consequences that come with it, I have decided to start “25% of 12th Girl”: a promise I’m making you, my readers.

When The 12th Girl in Heaven is published on June 6th, I will donate 25% of all proceeds of the novella to R.E.S.T. of Seattle to stop the sex trafficking of my fellow Washingtonian female residents.

Read the first chapter of The 12th Girl in Heaven here.

PROTECT WOMEN AND BOYCOTT THE FIFTY SHADES OF GREY MOVIE TOMORROW.

Top 10 Posts of 2014

Thank you, readers, for making this the best year that the BlondeRJ blog has seen yet!

Here are the most popular blog posts of 2014!  These posts received the most views.  Click on any title to read the post.  Please let me know what type of blog posts you want to see from me this coming year!  More art?  More current events?  Brainy?  Myers-Briggs fun?  Book reviews?  Or Christian topical discussions?  Let me know!

Keep reading and commenting!  Thank you all!

 

1. How Each Myers-Briggs Type Reacts to a Dead Body

This one was just stereotyping Myers-Briggs types in a meant-for-laughs way.  However, this was a huge hit on Reddit, staying on the front page for almost a week.  I still get hits all over the world coming from Reddit wanting a laugh.  No one commented on my actual blog, but there’s quite a discussion going on over on Reddit about this post.  🙂  I’m thinking it’s time for another Myers-Briggs humor post…

 

2. Should Married Women Vote Against Their Spouse?

My controversial voting post was my first to go viral, but it only has half the views of the Myers-Briggs one above, believe it or not!  This post created waves by being something that made a lot of people mad.  I got hate responses from a few people, which greatly amused me.  You don’t have to agree with it, but go ahead and give it a read.  Interestingly enough, I still get views on this post from the Middle East.  I don’t know if that’s bad or good…

 

3. Too Attached to Your Kidshands

It’s funny how the posts that make people unhappy receive more views than anything else.  I’m not sure everyone agreed with this article as well, but the response was very favorable.  I made new, dear friends on Facebook just because they read this article.  Jessica F., you know who you are!  Love you!  Again, feel free to disagree with me – and let me know that you do – when you peruse this one.  ❤

 

4. An Open Letter to My Pregnant Sister

I’ve always wondered if people think they’re getting something juicy when they click on this link!  Hbeautiful-wedding-tiaraowever, my happily married, godly sister, had a baby shower for her first baby, and my mom wanted someone to do the devotional for it.  Because I love my little sister, and live so far away from her, I was sad that I couldn’t make it.  Instead, I wrote the devotional and recorded it, keeping it a secret from her.  When it came time to do the devotional, my mom surprised my sister by crowning her with a tiara I had provided, and playing my voice over the speakers.  That’s what this post is.  🙂

 

5. We Are Losing Our Men

This was a very personal article to me that was born from a week of realizing I had misjudged my own husband for far too long.  Our culture is such a promoter of macho, emotionless, physically-driven men.  The actual hearts that live in our husbands are often thought to not exist.  I pray this article helps many of us wives.  ❤

 

6. The HONEST Student Contract – Funny!piano_teacher_funny_pizza_t_shirt_tshirt-r3d5eca8b2d3b4d53ab0f7b10e7d48e40_804gs_512

Again, the only reason for this post’s success is Reddit.  (Great place to advertise, all!)  For some reason, this hit a funny bone among Reddit readers.  It was something stupid I wrote as a teenager, and new piano teacher, that I felt like throwing up on my blog to see if it hit a cord.  Sure did!  Hopefully you teachers get a laugh!

 

7. Coming out of the (Medicine) Closet

Unfortunately, I feel like many of my dearest friends and I don’t see eye to eye medically.  This doesn’t mean we can’t be best friends though!  Instead of answering the same questions about immunizations, allergies, c-sections, and such, I just decided, with the help of my husband, to write a list of where I stand.  I’ve received a lot less criticisms, and for that, I’m glad.  It’s not in the interest of any of us to fight or argue over these things.  I’m glad that this post made it around.

 

8. The Shocking Truth About Lady Gaga That She Doesn’t Want You to Know

I’m so glad that this one is on the list.  I cried my eyes out the entire day I wrote this.  I still contemplating mailing that last paragraph to Lady Gaga herself.  Even if it’s only read by a secretary, I feel like I should try.  Our celebrities are suffering in their sin, guilt, and choice of lifestyles.  May you be motivated to pray for them after reading this pot.  BE WARNING: This is a mature post, with graphic pictures and topics.

 

9. The Story of My Friend Problems

I apologize!  I apologize!  This one is total clickbait, and I know it.  I’m amused that everyone wanted the scoop on RJ’s past problems.  This one is a quick read with a total surprise ending.  Go read it and be mad at me.  Or laugh.  😉

 

10. An Open Letter to a Teenager

Here is the REAL scoop on RJ’s past problems.  Get your gossip here!  😉

 

 

 

Thank you for reading!  Please subscribe by clicking the “follow this blog by email” button on the top right of the page.  Subscribe to never miss a post, and also to be entered into a drawing!

 

 

The Shocking Truth About Lady Gaga That She Doesn’t Want You to Know

TRIGGER WARNING: ADULT POST

This post contains discussion of bulimia, rape, and bullying, as well as pictures of vomit and blood

This is going to be a disgusting post, and not a pleasant one.  However, I shed tears as I wrote it, and my chest felt squeezed tight with sorrow and sympathy.  I’d like all of you to pray with me, if you can find it in your heart to do so, and I’d like to address a wrong reaction to suffering that goes on in the life of thousands of women every day.

Today, I read that Lady Gaga admitted to having been raped at the age of 19.

It’s probably a common story, on the whole.  Many celebrities have experienced the very rape of their souls up on that stage.  They are forced to bare most of their body for the audience, they let their deep, dark secrets out in their dance and song, and they are manhandled by the industry that possesses them.  I’m sure that many have experienced sexual assault as well.  Lady Gaga has also spoken up, in the past, about being bullied.

However, to each individual human life, rape – of any kind – is life-alteringly important.  Just because there is someone being sexually assaulted every two minutes in our country doesn’t make it any less devastating.  At that moment, Lady Gaga – and hey, let’s look at her as a real person and call her by her beautiful given name: Stefani – at that moment, God was filled with sadness by what happened to the precious child, Stefani, whom He created and lovesAt that moment, she was a victim – a sinner who was sinned against by another sinner.  And God allowed it for a reason that we don’t understand.  But we can be assured that He is always wanting to draw her to Himself.

Yet, and this is where it gets saddest, Stefani chose to let this man and what he has done to her rule her life.

She claims that’s not the case.  In her interview with Howard Stern, she says, “I don’t want to be defined by it. I’ll be ****** if somebody’s gonna say that every creatively intelligent thing that I ever did is all boiled down to one ****head that did that to me.”

But she can’t even see that it has, indeed, defined and influenced her life.

The conversation with Stern stemmed from a discussion of Gaga’s latest song, “Swine,” the lyrics of which are, as Gaga herself puts it, “about rape, the song is about demoralization.  The song is about rage and fury and passion, and I had a lot of pain that I wanted to release.”

I know, I know, I know, I know you want me
You’re just a pig inside a human body
Squealer, squealer, squealer, you’re so disgusting
You’re just a pig inside…
Do you? I know, I know, I know you want me
You’re just a pig inside a human body
Squealer, squealer, squealer, you’re so disgusting
You’re just a pig inside…”  (Chorus of “Swine”)

In the show’s live performance at the SXSW conference in Texas, Stefani hired a vomit artist named Millie BrownWhat is a vomit artist?  If your skin is already crawling and your stomach flipping over uncomfortably, then you feel the way I did when I cautiously googled this term.  Millie Brown swallows milk mixed with food coloring or paint, after starving herself for two days to make sure there’s no food in her stomach.  She then proceeds to gag herself and make herself throw up the paint/milk concoction onto paper.  She considers this to be “using her body to create art,” but she has since been blasted online for downplaying bulimia and bulimic practices.  A petition is being signed to keep her from ever working with Gaga again, so as not to influence teenagers and promote eating disorders.  (To sign the petition, click here.)

The worst part about all of this, is that, during Stefani’s performance of her “rape song,” she had Millie Brown vomit all over her on stage.  Twice.  And, in Stefani/Gaga’s own words, this is why:

“I’ve gone through a lot of mental and physical therapy and emotional therapy. It hit me so hard. I was so traumatized by it that I was like, ‘Just keep going.’  Because I just had to get out of there.  I wasn’t willing to admit that [the rape] had even happened.  I’m going to take responsibility for all my pain looking beautiful. All the things that I’ve made out of my strife, I did that.  [I was] paralysed by fear.  Because it wasn’t until I was a little bit older that I went, ‘Wow, that was really messed up.’  I said to myself, ‘I want to sing this song while I’m ripping hard on a drum kit, and then I want to get on a mechanical bull’—which is probably one of the most demoralizing things that you can put a female on in her underwear—

and I want this chick to throw up on me in front of the world so that I can tell them, you know what? You could never, ever degrade me as much as I could degrade myself, and look how beautiful it is when I do.'”

 

 

Talk about a true visual as to how a woman can suffer.  And this is where I start crying again.

So the outfits, the craziness, the blood in one show, the vomit in another, and the eating disorders – seem to really all be because she is in the depths of self-loathing.  She feels that the only way to protect herself is to degrade herself to depths no man could ever imagine, so that, when someone hurts her, it will drip off of her like water on oil.  She has already hurt herself worse, and deadened her heart and soul to humiliation and pain.  Having someone throw up all over her was just next on the list.

 

Oh, Stefani.  Stefani.

 

Stefani, can I talk directly to you for a minute?

You may want to claim it’s all art and that you’re proud of it.  Others may say it’s all the man’s fault and blame him for everything.  But I think you hit on the real problem in the title of your hit “Born This Way.”

I have friends who were sexually abused.  I know people who suffered atrocities that make my head spin.  However, they don’t feel a need to degrade themselves.  They know something you don’t, Stefani.  And that is: that an all-powerful God created every muscle, organ, and bone of your body in love.  That this God designed you in your mother’s womb, watched over you in deep, intense, love, and that this same God sent His only son to be degraded, destroyed, murdered, and humiliated for you.  For you, Stefani.

No one ever need to be degraded again.

 

 

You are a wicked sinner, but so am I.  I am no better than you are in my sinful state, Stefani.  And the desire to degrade ourselves and hate ourselves comes from an understanding of our imperfect, damaged, natural state.  It doesn’t stem from what a man has done to you.  It begins at birth – you are born this way: imperfect, damaged, and disgusting because of your sin.

But instead of covering yourself with fake blood that does not save, instead of hiding  your degraded face, someone has already offered His blood for you.  His blood is pure, righteous, holy, and cleansing.  His blood covers your sins, your hurts, your pains, your past, and your shame.

You need never live in pain again.  You need never seek negative attention to atone for your past.  You are forgiven and atoned for if you embrace His Son who loves you and longs for you like someone would His erring bride.  He adores your very heart and soul.  He made you in all of your creative expression and unique personality.  He desires for you to use that deep, intense soul to love Him back and to share His love for others.  He deeply loves you, and you will never be happy without Him.  You will remain a degraded, self-loathing “Little Monster” without Him.

I grieve for you, Stefani, you who were specially made and loved by God.  You who I love as a lost sister of our King.

I am praying for you, Stefani.

 

 

 

Unthinkable

“I’m talking about you being damaged. I’m talking about the kind of damage that causes you to do the things you do. That’s the only reason I’m here. I think you’re mentally ill. You must be. I think you need help.” – Unthinkable, by Nancy Werlin

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Please read the list on my website, Captive Thoughts, for all of the gory details in this novel, to decide if this is a clean enough book for you and yours.

This is my own personal review of this novel.

WARNING: Descriptions of rape, sexuality, and abuse – Not an article for children

WARNING: Spoilers

Nancy Werlin. She was one of those teen fiction writers who, as a young adult, fascinated me.

I wouldn’t have called any of her novels my favorites. There was always something too cruel, too raw, and too blunt about her writing. There were things that caused me to squirm – realistic, dirty, gritty things in the hearts of human beings that she was able to point out and write boldly about. I valued her novels in the same way one would peruse a psychiatric journal for fun. It was like a train wreck you couldn’t look away from. One that left you a little more educated on the dark side of life.

Her book, The Killer’s Cousin, received an Edgar Award (named for Edgar Allen Poe, it is awarded to the best fictional mysteries). I was awed by the depths she went to to understand a human heart. Awed, but saddened, as none of her characters ever realized their own truly sinful nature and sought help from Jesus Christ, the healer of hearts.

Nancy Werlin’s books were part of my inspiration for my novel, Angel-Lover. Let’s take a troubled teen and bring him to his lowest, darkest, and most depressed moments.  Except, in my book, I then have him logically look upward. I let him see that Jesus Christ is his only answer, otherwise life was meaningless.

When I found that Nancy Werlin had tried her hand at a fantasy series, I was excited. I was prepared for brutality and wicked villains as well as humanly evil protagonists.

No one is a “good guy” in a Nancy Werlin novel, and isn’t that realistic? For all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God.  (Romans 3:23)

The library only carried Unthinkable, the companion book to Werlin’s original, Impossible. It was able to stand alone, even if the reader had not read Impossible, so I checked it out.

And it disappointed on quite a few levels.

Nancy has given her main character a strange situation, but it’s a case that seems familiar to any of us who have turned on the news lately. Thinking about the Ariel Castro case, as well as the fact that Elizabeth Smart just released a book, Werlin’s character, named Fenella Scarborough, is a face and story we’ve seen on the news. Her situation is only exaggerated.

At barely seventeen years of age, enticed by her hearty laugh and physical beauty, (which seems to resemble his mother’s appearance? This is, sadly, never explained) a love-starved, wicked, abandoned “mud creature,” – a creature born of a human and a fairy – falls for her. Out of his lust for someone to care about him, and because his red-headed fairy mother abandoned him at birth and ignored him ever after, this man creature chose red-headed, happy-go-lucky Fenella to be his. After killing her fiancé, he whisks her away and curses her and all of her female descendants to serve as his slaves.

Before their eighteenth birthday, each girl, in the Scarborough line, falls pregnant, usually due to rape, and then, if they are not able to solve three riddles, they are brought to him to serve him until their own daughter turns eighteen. Then they are killed. Fenella, however, is cursed with longevity, so she gets to watch this horror over and over again for twenty generations, and it is implied that she herself is also the subject of sexual and emotional abuse during this entire period of four hundred years.

It’s a dire plight. Painful to think about. Yet I was prepared for the emotional aspect to be broken down competently and with insight into what a human being would actually do in this impossible scenario.

But, as Unthinkable begins, the curse has already been broken and Fenella has been freed from her fairy abuser. Now she just wants to die in peace and escape the cruel world she has been a part of for far too long. She says that “Life is death. Life is destruction. Life is meaningless.”

The queen of the fairies tells her that her only hope to break her longevity curse is to commit three acts of destruction on her surviving family. And, if she embarks on this quest and fails, they will end up back with the evil fairy captor, cursed once again. Fenella’s lust for death is so strong that she willingly takes this upon herself, instead of living out her days in peace and safety. She visits the last of her descendants and begins to destroy their lives.

Her list of destruction includes burning houses down, running over people with a car, attempting to kill pets, trying to seduce male members of the family, and kidnapping babies. Fenella is, at first glance, a pretty despicable character, yet she is one we see come out of abusive homes and into the foster care system far too often.

I think that Nancy Werlin has given us a scarred and broken character, something she is good at doing. However, she failed us by refusing to flesh Fenella out, to stop and tackle the heart issues, and to accurately point out the intensive help someone needs when they have been victims of abuse.

Fenella meets a man during her time of deceitful destruction with her family. He is a random veterinarian. And I emphasize random. The man has so little purpose in the story besides to be someone that gets Fenella’s sexual desires racing. It’s shocking.

I was convinced that the vet was really the evil fairy kidnapper. I was so sure that I had stumbled upon a seriously beguiling plot twist, that I kept reading when I probably should have closed the book.

What a novel that would have been, in my opinion! Fenella is held captive by a “man” whose parents abandoned him, who deemed him unworthy to survive due to his mixed “race,” and who is starved for love and affection. After years of rape and abuse, and seeing all of her descendants abused, Fenella longs for death to escape her shame and horror, even though she is freed from her captor. Yet, while pursuing death, she meets him in disguised form. He is tender, vulnerable, and kind. He woos her and she falls for him legitimately, only to find out she has an aggravated form of Stockholm Syndrome and the man has a real, albeit twisted, and heavily tainted love for her underneath his abusive behavior. And that, as she hurts and controls others, she is really no better than he at heart.  She could then learn to forgive, learn to walk away, and truly free herself from the emotional captivity where she’s still a prisoner.

But NO. None of this is the case.

Walker, the vet, is just an ordinary man. Fenella and Walker barely even know each other’s first names before they’re kissing each other, feeling each other up, and leaping onto each other, discussing sex.

We see classic signs of the sexual victim here.

Fenella, for the first time in four hundred years, has found a man who SHE can control sexually. And she does so. Without even knowing him, learning to love him, or being honest with him, she pays attention only to his looks, uses him and throws herself on him, controlling every aspect of the relationship, forcing herself physically over and over again. Many times Walker is completely trapped by his own male lusts, angry and hateful that Fenella is so blatantly seducing him, yet powerless to turn away. Fenella has become the sexual abuser with a captive of her own. Thus the cycle continues.

Instead of this being a novel where Fenella discovers that about herself, mourns the sexual abusive circle of life that has continued, and comes to understand and forgive her captor, this instead reads like a borderline erotic novel. There are pages of selfish cruelty, where Fenella steals, lies, and destroys all to fulfill her own purposes, not repenting of her selfishness until the very end. Then, completely unrealistically, she is only spared from committing suicide due to a fairy prince feeling badly for her and giving her a simple chiding.

Fenella never sees the true error of her ways, never receives counseling over the abuse she has suffered, and instead rationalizes the cruelty she bestows upon her own family. In the end, instead of true repentance, we see her admit herself worthy of death, and then suddenly change her mind after the fairy prince’s small correction. She then chooses to return to her family and apologize, assuming she will continue to pursue and control the relationships around her, including that of the vet, Walker. Walker, himself, seems captivated by her for no reason at all, and is unable to pull himself away from being victimized by a very disturbed woman. We see no heartfelt soul-searching and no forgiveness come from the very bitter Fenella. No forgiveness of herself or her captor. The ending is very rushed.

The fairy queen, who has been helping and observing Fenella all of this time, has something wise to say to her at one point. When Fenella excuses her choices, saying her selfish destruction of those dearest her is for a good cause, the queen remarks, “Do you think that good intentions excuse bad action? Going into destruction, honorable or not – is it allowable to destroy one person to save many?” However, instead of convicting Fenella, who feels the rebuke keenly, she then goes on to nullify her words by saying that she is happy Fenella has taken control of her life, even if it means doing people evil. “Life changes people anyway. People are already damaged. And people get over it” the queen basically adds, her worldview completely devoid of hope. She condones Fenella’s selfishness with a shrug about humans always being able to recover. She feeds into Fenella’s self-centered resolve.

At the very end, Fenella throws a random reproof at the fairy kingdom for not caring for or helping her captor back when he was a child. This is an afterthought. Never is she truly sorry inside of herself for not pursuing her captor’s broken heart or his mother to repair the damage done to him. The evil fairy’s motives are never discussed. He dies instantly when she breaks the longevity curse, while calling out to her, “I always loved you!  I would’ve loved you forever,” and she thinks, “Good riddance.” He is a horrible, terrible, creature, but any human being has the capacity to become a bully or be abusive.  Fenella herself has already embraced the path of a bully and abuser.

What would have been more interesting is if she had pursued the abandonment angle, choosing to show her captor Christ’s forgiveness and to try to get him help. (It is implied that he was seriously alone and friendless.) His death seems futile, as Fenella learns not a single lesson from all of her ordeal, but turns into an abuser herself. Instead we see her living out her days in hatred and loathing of herself, him, and everyone around them. She is even jealous of the descendant who breaks the curse, instead of being relieved that she and hers are now freed. She thinks back to her original first daughter who hated her and wished her dead. It is the motivation for the entire book. In shame and loathing of herself, Fenella wishes herself dead to fulfill her daughter’s bitterness. Fenella’s sudden change of mind to live, at the end of the novel, seems completely out of place in an effort to throw up a sloppy happy ending.

A Christian influence, a look at heart attitudes, and a proper discussion of victim behavior could have saved this book. It would have been great for the characters to acknowledge their faults, see their sin, and change. Even just a realization that sins can be cyclical would have been profitable.

Instead, Unthinkable is a cruel, dark, erotic look at a victim-turned-abuser with no plans to truly change her heart. The fairy tale happy ending is a joke.

World’s Worst Psychopath – With a Surprise Ending

ADULTS ONLY
(Warning: Graphic content as to a sexual, criminal nature)

 

 

 

 

Just read an entire article (I really don’t know why.  I followed a link from an email about pinpointing psychopaths…) about a serial killer, homosexual who raped, murdered, and dismembered his male victims, some times children.

Again, no idea why I was reading about this…

As I’m reading,  I’m getting more and more angry, more and more sickened, and then I get to the end where it says, “Before being killed by a fellow inmate, Jeffrey Dahmer became a born-again Christian.”

 

WHAT????

 

After extensively googling said conversion, it seems like all of the pastors around him, as well as his Christian family, believed it to be true.
I must tell you, my initial thoughts were not pretty.  I was appalled at how much angrier I got upon reading this.  As one person said, in an article attached to his salvation: “If Dahmer is in heaven, I don’t want to be there.”  My thoughts borderlined on this kind of judgmental and unchristlike thinking.

 

Yes, his sins were probably as vulgar as any human can get, but, without Christ, and with the devil given free-reign in our hearts, could any of us have gotten there?  What do you think?  Could everyone get to be as bad as a Hitler, Genghis Khan, or a Jeffrey Dahmer?

 

All I know is: We are ALL VILE sinners.  Everything we do is repugnant to the Lord Jesus Christ.  Everything we do deserves hell.  Each of our salvation stories were undeserved, blatant miracles.  Should we not see that the repentance of a homosexual, dismembering, murderous pedophile is an amazing act of a powerful, sovereign God?

 

How arrogant am I?

 

And how well do I see myself, if I want to refuse anyone a right to having their sins washed clean?

 

It was a bit tough to take – reading about those truly despicable things he’s done – and yet, do I truly see sin how Christ does?  No wonder Paul calls salvation a great mystery!  How can it change the heart of someone so perversely hardened?  How can it change my heart?

 

I don’t know, guys… I’m not writing this because I’ve completely gotten rid of my judgmental spirit.  I mean, it’s hard enough to say these things while sitting and reading about it.  But what if my little brother had been a victim?  What then?  I think I have a ways to go.  This evening has opened up quite a conversation between God and me.  I need to figure out the extent of my own pride tonight.
However, three things are clear: NO one deserves heaven.  NO ONE is righteous.  And absolutely NO ONE is past hope.

 

Let’s pray for our hearts to be as open as the Lord’s, and to never give up praying for our unsaved loved ones – or even unsaved criminals.

 

God can do anything.