To Believe or Not Believe — That is the Question

believe

I don’t believe in Mack trucks. Only wimps who need a crutch to get through life think they exist. Stupid people. When will they ever learn to think for themselves?

I can trust those statements as truth, but if I stand in the middle of a freeway, those same beliefs won’t stop a Mack Truck from mowing me down. Why? Because…

 

That which is real has being in itself.

It does not depend upon the observer for its validity.

 

Whether you agree or disagree, this concept makes for some great debate…and just might change your life in the conversation. It’s also a theme that runs throughout A Heart Deceived, a gothic story of faith and ultimately hope.

Intellectually, heroine Miri Brayden knows about God, but that knowledge doesn’t fill the emptiness inside her. Concluding that God exists doesn’t bring her any personal pleasure. It’s no different than deciding sea-faring vessels exist—though she’d never seen one. Faith in a ship meant nothing. However, if she had an urgent need to travel to another continent, a ship was the way to go. She had to decide to act on what she believed to be real, and not only seek out that ship, but get on board and test that belief.

hearAfter a series of events, Miri makes the decision to talk to God on an intimate level. It finally makes sense that if she’s going to believe in God, it’s an all or nothing game. If God is real, He has every right to influence and direct her life—and that humble stance makes all the difference in her life.

Hero Ethan Goodwin is a control freak. After growing up under the influence of an overbearing and unloving father, he now lives life on his own terms. Unfortunately, those terms lead to an opium addiction that’s nearly the death of him.

In a chance encounter with the Reverend John Newton, Ethan admits that he doesn’t believe in God—and finds out that just because he believes something isn’t true does not mean it doesn’t exist. The idea is new to him, that whether or not he knows God, God knows all about him. It is a sobering thought, especially in light of his debauched lifestyle.

A Heart Deceived is a piece of historical fiction, but there’s nothing fictional about the character John Newton. He was a living, breathing, sinner saved by grace. Some of his dialogue in the book uses direct quotes. This one is not:

 

Your belief—or lack of it—doesn’t change God’s existence.

 

However, after researching the man, I have no doubt he would’ve said it. Newton came to the Christian faith after leading a rebellious lifestyle, which made for one tender-hearted pastor who told it like it was, direct yet compassionate. He wasn’t afraid to speak truth, but he did so in a way that made you think.

And that’s the purpose of A Heart Deceived. To rattle your cage and make you dig deep into the truths that you hold. Believing in the existence of God is one thing. Putting your life in His hands and trusting Him is quite another.

It’s called faith.

michMichelle Griep has been writing since she first discovered blank wall space and Crayolas…professionally, however, for the past 10 years. Her recent release is A HEART DECEIVED, a gothic regency put out by David C. Cook (June 2013). If you’d like to keep up with her escapades, you can find her at www.michellegriep.com or www.writerofftheleash.blogspot.com or feel free to stalk her on Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest.

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