As Christian authors, sometimes our mindset toward writing and marketing books can get muddied by all the glitz and glam that could come from a profitable author career.
Thousands of glowing reviews. BookBub deals. Weeks on the Bestseller lists. Lots and lots of royalties.
The perks of a profitable author career and perceivably endless, but you know what truly last for eternity? The impact we have on our readers as Christian authors. That’s why our top priority as Christian authors–aka authors who write to honor God and make Him known–should be Kingdom-minded and not Money-minded. Read on to learn why the task of being called to be a Christian author is a huge responsibility, and why we shouldn’t let the ways of the world spoil our talent and Why for writing.
What is a Kingdom Mindset?
Before switching churches right after my husband and I got married in October 2021, I hadn’t heard the term “Kingdom Mindset” regularly; however, after attending our new church for almost a year now, it is a regular topic in sermons preached by both our lead pastor and our associate pastor, and it has greatly impacted the way I approach writing and marketing books.
Basically, a “Kingdom Mindset” is approaching everything we do in our daily walk as Christians with the intent to make God known to others, therefore always seeking to expand His kingdom.
Why is Having a Kingdom Mindset so Important for Christian Authors?
If we are Christian authors, we most likely decided to write books for God on the basis that we feel led by Him to use our gift of writing to reach and encourage others to follow Him. If we allow any other perk of authorship (fame, accolades, money) to overlap this initial Why for writing, then we are no longer writing to make God known, but ourselves.
Honestly, I put off writing this post for weeks, because I wasn’t quite sure what I wanted to say, but a couple weeks ago, our lead pastor gave a message on the topic of challenging us to share the gospel, and it was spot-on for this topic. So, for the remainder of this post, I’ll be adapting the highlights of his sermon to relate specifically to Christian authorship, with all the Scripture coming from 1 Corinthians, chapter nine.
Are we up for the challenge of running the race for God?
For if I do this thing willingly, I have a reward: but if against my will, a dispensation of the gospel is committed unto me. What is my reward then? Verily that, when I preach the gospel, I may make the gospel of Christ without charge, that I abuse not my power in the gospel. For though I be free from all men, yet have I made myself servant unto all, that I might gain the more.1 Corinthians 9:17-19, kjv
If God has called us to be authors, to write for Him and make Him known, that is a personal challenge for us to do His will. As the verses above say, God’s will for us is to spread the gospel of Christ, and our reward is that might win more people over to Christ.
If God has called us to be authors, nowhere does it say that our reward will be fame, accolades, or large royalties. Therefore, these things should not be our main end goals for writing and marketing Christian books.
Our pastor also stated that we have a choice whether to take the call to spread the gospel and run with it. As verse 17 says, even if spreading the gospel is against our own will, God still entrusted us with that stewardship–taking care of the task He’s called us to–and expects us to obey Him. If we are willingly disobeying God by putting other idols (all those other perks of authorship) above His will for us, then our heart needs examining.
Are we willing to reach out to everyone?
To the weak became I as weak, that I might gain the weak: I am made all things to all men, that I might by all means save some. And this I do for the gospel’s sake, that I might be partaker thereof with you.1 corinthians 9:22-23, kjv
Our pastor used these verses to explain that we don’t always get to pick and choose who we deal with on a daily basis. For example, we don’t get to choose who we’re going to meet in the grocery store or waiting in line at the DMV; nevertheless, as Christians, we should always seek to witness to those in our paths for Christ’s sake.
Now, what does this mean for us Christian authors? You see, my friend, if we’re writing for God, we need not just try to reach Christian readers with our books. This world is full of lost souls who need hope, and part of our calling as Christian authors is to also point non-Christian readers to the hope found only in a relationship with Jesus Christ.
Just like we can’t control who we meet out in public on a daily basis, once we publish our books, we cannot control who picks up and reads our books. This is why we should approach writing and marketing in a way that, as verses 22 and 23 in 1 Corinthians 9 explain, can reach people on their level that we might win some lost souls for the gospel’s sake.
Because the ultimate reward of successful Christian authorship (or any form of ministry), is sharing in the blessings of God’s Kingdom.
And this I do for the gospel’s sake, that I might be partaker thereof with you.1 corinthians 9:23, kjv
Yes, I know I cited this verse in the last section, but it’s vital that we remember this one thing: all callings and talents that come from God are to be used for His glory and to expand His Kingdom. The ultimate reward of becoming a successful Christian author–a reward that will last longer than our lives here on earth–is winning more people over to Christ.
If you spread gospel messages through your writing and marketing, you’re doing more than just making a quick sale or earning a five star review. If someone accepts Jesus because you encouraged them to follow Him, their life is now saved. There is nothing more precious than that. And not only that, but we’ve gained a brother or sister in Christ, thereby expanding His Kingdom. Mission accomplished.
Because our prize is not of this world.
And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible.1 Corinthians 9:25, kjv
The moral of the story is that, if God has called us to do something, we need to 1) Make sure that making Him known and increasing His Kingdom is our #1 focus, and 2) Strive to do our best to accomplish this task.
Again, rewards of earthly wealth and prosperity are not promised. But, if we do as God has called us to do, we will receive an incorruptible crown, and the words Well done, my good and faithful servant.
Now, What Happens if We Don’t Have a Kingdom Mindset?
I therefore so run, not as uncertainly; so fight I, not as one that beateth the air: But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.1 corinthians 9:26-27, kjv
If we run the race of authorship without sticking to the set track before us (aka the path God has led us to take), then it’s as if we’re doing it for naught. However, if we discipline ourselves to follow God’s will for our lives, and do not let the spoils of the world (more specifically for authors, all those things I mentioned earlier) lead us astray, then we will not find ourselves being disqualified as “a good and faithful servant” for God.
Will You Accept the Challenge, Christian Authors?
Fellow Christian authors, we are tasked with a calling that is more than just a hobby where we can make an extra income and delve in our creativity. Instead, we are specifically tasked with sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ to readers in the hope that some may come to know Him through our words.
Do you accept the challenge He has tasked us with?
Talk to Me, Arrowheads!
How are you working to share the gospel through your current WIP or marketing projects? Let me know in the comments!
P.S. I hope this post makes you think! The sermon it stemmed from definitely hit me hard.
Aim high, stay strong, and always hit your mark.