The Most Uncomfortable Part about Writing a Book

I decided to write my forthcoming book, The Color of Compromise: The Truth about the American Church’s Complicity in Racism, because I could not conscience going to another church or Christian organization to speak about racial justice only to see nothing change afterwards.

A Historical Approach

My work involves preaching and teaching about the how racism has bashed down the gates and invaded the church. Actually, racism has always been present within the American church and, like a wolf disguised as a sheep, it has been devouring the saints and ravaging congregations for centuries.

I surmised that part of the reason Christians, and others, have not taken aggressive action to drive out racism is they don’t really know how deeply it has permeated the church in the past. We have vague recollections, but we do not have a clear sense of how deliberate and intentional leaders and laypeople have been in constructing barriers based on bigotry. The Color of Compromise brings attention to a series of historic decisions that have shaped the racially divided church we see in America today, then it proposes the kind of bold solutions that might bring about meaningful change.

The Most Uncomfortable Part

Writing this book involves intense and sustained effort, but I am glad to do it. We must learn the history of racism in the church if we ever hope to enact the vision in Revelation where people from every tribe and tongue unite in all their diversity.
While actually composing a book presents endless obstacles—lack of time, distractions, writer’s block, and more—writing the book has not been the most uncomfortable part for me. The most uncomfortable part of writing a book is promoting it.

I have often heard the phrase “shameless plug” before someone points to their own work. I am not at the “shameless” point yet. I get quite sheepish asking people to pay attention to the book I’m writing. Putting a book together takes a long time. The release date is nine months away at this point. A project this massive naturally takes up a lot of space in one’s mind, but I don’t want to annoy people by constantly talking about it. Nor do I want to “use” my friends and associates to boost book sales.

Promote Your Work

At the same time, if you don’t promote your own work, who will? In the age of social media, where everyone can have a voice, and everyone can produce—whether a tweet, a photo, a blog post or a book—the competition for attention has never been greater. I don’t think there is any way to avoid self-promotion in this age of endless information.

As a budding author, I psyche myself up to promote my book by remembering that I think this work is important. This information should be championed by someone. I hope the knowledge I’m sharing is a service to people in the church and the broader society. It is the kind of book I wish I could have read years ago, and perhaps others will be grateful they had access to it more easily than I did.

So, as uncomfortable as it feels, I’d be glad if you signed up for my newsletter. You’ll be especially interested if you enjoy learning about history, race, and religion. There’s even a link to pre-order the book when you sign up. As a bonus, you’ll be among the first to see the cover image.

Even if you don’t sign up, if praying is your thing, I could honestly, seriously use your prayers. This is a spiritual journey as much as an intellectual or artistic one. It seems like this project came along at precisely the worst time in light of other responsibilities and obligations I have. But I will push through, and I would appreciate your support.

Regardless of whether you engage my writing at all, promote your own work. Always check your heart. The temptation to pride and jealousy presents a constant threat. But, when you have examined your motives as best you can, let others know what you are doing. You might reach someone who needs exactly what only you can provide.

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