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DVD Review

I apologize for not being more active, but not having other reviewers or books to review, it's been a little difficult. However I want to let you know about this wonderful DVD "God's Not Dead." Working at the library I found it on our shelves and took it home. When I brought it back I raved about it. I wanted to take it out again, but it seems word gets around. It's always on hold for someone else. That's great.

The opening scene is in a freshman college philosophy class. The professor states he is an atheist, and asks that if everyone will sign a paper with 3 little words on it he can dispense of the dust and get to the subject. Those 3 words are "God Is Dead." One student cannot sign that. He is given 3 chances to argue the case of the existence of God before the class.

Fueled by hate on one side and a determined love of God on the other this is not your simple movie. The poor kid researches and goes off on a journey of his own to state his case. The end is nothing short of amazing. I guess telling people stuff like this is one of the reasons I can't get a hold of it a second time. It's really that good.

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May our Lord be with you now and always. Remember, God is in control, even when things look like they're crashing all around you. David

Sunday, March 02, 2008

THE VOID, by Mark Mynheir

Day 1 Sunday

Character Driven

In THE VOID, by Mark Mynheir, we meet numerous characters, all delivered to us in an orderly fashion with respect to the story. They are the ones who tell the story, which is powerful, because you get to see the situation from different perspectives. I'm partial to character-driven writing, because that's the way I do it. It's not the only method, but one of the two favored methods, the other being plot-driven writing. In character-driven writing the very first thing you have to do is breath life into people, then write your story. Mark does this and more. You can feel with them, see into their thoughts, feel the emotional pain that they go through. The reason for doing this is so that when you start moving with your plot, it will fit the characters you have created.

Characters speak to the author as much as they do to each other and to the reader. They get to say, “Wait a minute, I don't do that,” and the author either listens, or comes out with a predictable piece of weak writing. Mark not only created believable characters, but he was faithful to their personalities throughout the work. You can feel the ego of Warren Finstead, the pride of Dr. Silverstein, the apprehension of Dr. Meyer. You are dragged into the weary world of Special Agent “Robbie” Sanchez, as she is burning out in her job at the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, laugh with Special Agent John Russell and Special Agent in Charge (SAC) Alan Cohen over the antics of Special Agent Tim Porter, and his “new” car. You feel the gentle, but firm person of Officer Brad Worthington, the pain of his Palm Bay PD partner Eric Casey. One of the things that is done well, is his portrayal of “Adam”, the special product of LifeTex, thanks to Drs. Silverstein and Meyer.

Scripture tells us that God is an author. I like that. It gives me a connection with Him that I wouldn't have had otherwise. Of course you can probably find your own connections, because God has made us that way. To farmers He is the the one who plants seed. To the rancher He is the Good Shepherd. For those more inclined to use their hands, He is the Carpenter's Son. He's fished with the fishermen of Galilee. Argued with the rabbis in the Temples. Partied with tax collectors and sinners. Yet, to me, the connection is one of an author. As the Author, the Bible also says that we were created before the foundations of the world. In other words, before God began writing the story of the people on Earth, He created each of us, knew what we would say and do, even what decisions we would make. He didn't create us to make wrong decisions, but being a loving and merciful God He allowed us to chose our own that He already knew. Knowing this beforehand does not impede our free will, nor does it tell us that God created some people for Heaven and some people for Hell. We were all, each of us, created to become His children. The fact that so few of us actually take God up on this gracious offer is not His fault, even if He knew in advance. As the writer of our story, He had to restrict Himself to the choices we would make. He had to make sure that we were “in character” as it were. Why am I saying all of this? Because THE VOID is about choices, about conflicts, even about the creation of life. If God created us in a certain way and we were to create life in a completely different way, what would be the outcome? One possibility is given to us in this story. THE VOID, is very real. Yet it is not a place. It is a “non-place” if I can put it that way. It's more that just emptiness, it's the absence of something necessary. And that is about all I'm going to tell you today.

On sale now at Random House

And of course at

Be sure to check out Mark's personal site at Cop Writer

Other CFRB members who will be posting sometime this week:

A Frank Review
Back to the Mountains
Between Sundays
Bibliophile's Retreat
Cathi's Chatter
Queen of Convolution
S.M. Kirkland
Virtual Book Tour de 'Net


cathikin said...

Wow! What a detailed article! Great points and musings.

Christian Fiction Review said...

Scout around. There are details galore in some of the other posts, especially Caprice Hokstad's. Thanks though. The challenging thing is to make these posts last for 7 days without giving away too much.

David Brollier

Caprice Hokstad said...

Mine? I just touched on a few things. Have you guys seen Frank Creed's? He has gone all over the internet, seeking reviews and sharing them. That took some time on the old search engine.

Good opening, David.

ForstRose said...

Choices and free-will are definitely key points in this story in the characters' lives. I am a bit slow on reading these as I wanted to not ruin anything by reading something that gives away spoilers before I got there in reading the book myself.


Copwriter said...


Thank you for such a great introduction. I really appreciate the hard work you put in on this tour. I'm glad you enjoyed The Void. Take care, and God bless.

Mark Mynheir

windycindy said...

Hello, I enjoyed reading your insights to the background of your intriguing book! It reminds me of the "Buddhist" meaning of void or emptiness. God breathed life into our essence and then gave us choices for our lives, thus filling the void. The Buddhist believe that nothing possesses enduring identity and if we realize this, it leads to personal wisdom and inner peace. Your thoughts and the Buddhist beliefs are very deep. They cause me to really think about life! Thanks for your wonderful book.....

David said...

WindyCindy, you'll find my comments diverge from those of the Buddhists on several levels. First, Nirvana, (the void-state) was something to be attained. Scripture shows us that were God is not present in a life there is a void. In other words, it is something to avoid. God wants us to have the fullness of Himself present within us. Our true identities are not found, therefore, in the void, but in the God who created us.

I'm glad you posted though and hope to hear from you again from time to time. Truth is absolute. One of the key elements to living a spiritually successful life is finding out which elements of truth are absolute in all religions, then seeing how they compare with what God calls truth. When we do this we find that even the most anti-Christian thinking points us towards Christ, because He is the embodiment of God's absolute Truth.


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