faith and fiction interview with Christian Fiction Author – Jennifer Rodewald

In a world inundated with narratives of a wide variety, each narrative seeking to pull our attention and spiritual allegiance, there’s a unique power in narrative found within storytelling. Stories have the unique ability to captivate, inspire, and transform the reader. Our Savior Jesus Christ told stories throughout His ministry here on earth in order to “hang a lantern” on the truth. He did this through parables. Today, as Christian fiction authors, we have the distinct pleasure and purpose of telling stories that inspire our readers. I’m excited and pleased to announce this new blog series: Faith and Fiction.

Welcome to “Faith and Fiction,” a series of insightful interviews with my fellow Christian fiction authors who are dedicated to illuminating the Christian faith through storytelling. In this series, we will dive into the hearts, motivations, and minds of writers who craft narratives that resonate with the souls of readers and carry the weight of eternity on every page.

In a world full of darkness that seems to prevail far too often, Christian fiction stands as a beacon of light, truth, and hope. It offers glimpses of light and redemption in an otherwise broken world. It’s through the lives and actions of characters authors create and the worlds they build that readers are able to experience the beauty and power of the truth of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Our first interview features Jennifer Rodewald, a talented Christian author whose works of fiction often intersect with faith. With a deep understanding of the human condition and a heart for great storytelling, Jennifer’s novels resonate deeply with her readers.

Introduction To Jen

Can you please introduce yourself and share a bit about your journey as a Christian fiction author? What inspired you to write Christian fiction?

HI! I’m Jennifer Rodewald. Most of my friends call me Jen. I grew up reading Christian romance, and also writing stories as a way of processing life. In books, I found friends who showed me how life can be when one follows Jesus, and how struggles, failures, disappointments, and confusion can all find rest and renewed hope in surrendering to Christ. As I grew up, I also found satisfaction and joy in studying God’s word. For me, it is a natural blend to write fiction that points to Truth.

The How & Why of Faith and Fiction

How do you see faith and fiction working together in your writing? How do you integrate Christian themes and values into your stories?

I learn best through story, and I have found that God knows how to teach my heart in ways that make sense and yield deep impact—again, through story. So when I write, I learn. About myself, and others, but more importantly, more about the Lover of my soul. I’m not sure I intentionally integrate themes and values as much as they are always the foundation of how I see the world. Life doesn’t make sense without God, and so, one way or another, He is always part of the stories I tell.

In what ways do you believe Christian fiction contributes to the spiritual growth and development of readers?

Stories, when told with the gentleness of grace as well as the edge of truth, will challenge us. Make us ask questions like: What do I believe? How do I respond? What do I need to do better to better reflect Jesus to the world around me? Is there something in here that I need to deal with between Jesus and me?

Well-told stories should make us examine our lives, and that has great potential for spiritual growth. I think that’s one reason why Jesus used them so often.

How Christian Fiction Builds The Church

How do you envision your role as a Christian fiction author in building and strengthening the church community?

I’m just a girl who loves Jesus and tells stories. However God chooses to use that, in my life or in others’, is to His credit and glory.

How do you hope your stories impact readers’ understanding of the church and their relationship with God and fellow believers?

One of the things that I’ve been challenged with most as I write gritty characters who can be difficult has been; is this how I respond in real life?

How we handle fiction reflects how we respond to others in real life. Over and again, I’ve had to really examine my heart, finding in it so much pride, so much hardness. For me, it draws me to the cross, a place of repentance. Over time, I have softened from a harsh pharisee to a soul who longs for grace for herself as well as for others. There is beauty in that, you know? God continues to work grace in our lives, even in the hardest soils of our hearts.

How Christian Fiction Can Nurture Faith

How do you approach the portrayal of faith journeys and spiritual struggles in your novels? What message or lesson do you hope readers take away from these depictions?

So many of my stories are based on the testimony of others I’ve witnessed, or the legacies left to me by those who have gone before me. When I consider those true-life stories, I am put in a place of wonder at God’s power and grace to change a life. I also am reminded that quiet, gentle stories have great impact as well—I mean consider the drastic differences in the testimonies of the Apostle Paul and Barnabus. One is bigger than life, and the other is simple and consistent. Yet without Barnabus, I’m not sure Paul’s life would have had the impact it did. I’m not even sure he’d have been accepted at the church in Jerusalem. I want both in my stories—because they both matter to the Kingdom.

As far as message—ultimately, I want what the Psalmist writes in Psalm 115: “Not to us, Lord, not to us but to your name be the glory, because of your love and faithfulness.”

Can you share a personal anecdote or testimony of a reader who has been deeply impacted by your Christian fiction?

I have cried over some touching emails, and find great encouragement in reviews such as this (from The Carpenter’s Daughter): “I have asked myself who I am or am I really who God has created me to be? Am I living a vision of myself or the vision of how the Creator of the universe sees me?” 

Faith and Fiction: Outreach & Engagement

How do you engage with your readership and interact with your audience through your writing? Do you receive feedback from readers regarding the spiritual impact of your novels?

I always welcome emails at I do receive feedback from readers—usually, they’re very encouraging. 😉 I also post a couple of times a week on my Facebook author page (not my personal page) verses and quotes that I hope will serve as an encouragement to my readers. Those posts are often included in my newsletter, which is where I find the most interaction with my readers.

I will say that while feedback from readers is important, and I consider all that I receive, positive and negative, ultimately, I lay my work before God. It’s His approval I seek, which is an anchor, because there have been times when a critic could have ended my career with discouragement.

I think that’s important to remember, no matter who you are or what you do. Do your work before God, lay it out for His inspection.

Have you encountered any challenges or obstacles in writing Christian fiction, particularly in conveying spiritual themes and messages effectively?

Perhaps one of the greatest challenges has been that not all of my stories have the same level of depth, and sometimes that will throw my readers off. I get it! There are certain expectations that are established, and when something different comes, sometimes we get a little upset. The thing is, I can’t keep doing the same thing over and over again. I just don’t have the mental/spiritual capacity for it. So sometimes I write a story that is lighter. Or, as in my most recent series, I try something entirely different.

That’s not always met with kindness.

And that can be discouraging—especially when there are subtle accusations of losing sight of spiritual things. I haven’t lost sight of them. But climbing mountains all the time isn’t possible for me. Sometimes a girl just needs a sweet story. Or a laugh. I must remind myself that this is okay, and yet again, take my stories and lay them before God.

What’s Going On Right Now For Jen?

Could you tell us about your latest release or promotional book? Please provide a brief blurb or description of the book, along with any relevant information about the author.

My latest books are part of my newest series—Redemption Shores. This is the one that is most different from my other books, starting with the fact that it’s a saga-style series. Think of your favorite drama TV series (one of mine is Heartland), and that will help frame the style. Each book is a complete story . . . but there are many unanswered questions left at the end, because . . . well, that’s a reflection of life! LOL.

Lakeshore Wandering is the first book, and it was originally written as a spin-off of the ‘80’s romcom movie Overboard. I had fun with it, but it was a challenge to weave anything spiritual into the story. When the spiritual thread emerged, I discovered that the whole story was going to take a whole lot more than any single book could reasonably (and believably) hold. Thus, a saga was born!

 It’s a different way of writing a book! But I’ve enjoyed it—especially how I’ve been able to really dig deep into character development and spiritual arcs. It feels more realistic to me—though the slow growth of some hits directly against my personal impatience. It’s another opportunity for me to grow as a person, as it serves to remind me that sometimes growth in real life is painfully slow.

Lake Shore Awakening, Book 4 in the saga, releases on March 28th. I’m planning at least one more book for this series, but who knows? There might be more to tell after that. 😉

Additionally, we’d love to hear about what you’re currently working on and any upcoming projects you’re excited about.

I was honored to be invited to work with five other wonderful authors on a new project that will come out later this year . . . we haven’t announced it yet, so I’ll just have to say stay tuned for more. 😉

It’s been a fun project, and I think our readers are going to love what we have in store for them!

About Jennifer Rodewald

Jennifer Rodewald - Christian Fiction Author - Headshot

Jennifer Rodewald/J. Rodes lives on the wide plains somewhere near the middle of Nowhere. A coffee addict, chaser of teenage activities, and storyteller, she wears the hats of mom, teacher, and friend. Somehow, she is both a realist and a romantic. She writes faith-based stories of deeply moving Christian romance with well-developed characters, real-life struggles, and the hope of happily-ever-after grounded in the goodness and faithfulness of God.

She loves stories and believes they can be powerful vehicles of truth and hope. Mostly, she loves Jesus and wants to see others fall in love with Him too, because HE is the real hope for that eternal happily-ever-after.

She would love to hear from you! Please visit her at her website ( or on her author Facebook page! To keep up with the latest on her work, you can sign up for her newsletter here!

Latest Book/Series

Jennifer Rodewald - Christian Fiction Author - Wandering - Book 1 of Redemption Shores

Latest Book/Series: (PS book 1, Lake Shore Wandering, will be free March 15-18. Link: )

Redemption Shores: Get away to the majestic beauty of Elk Canyon Lake, a remote and breathtaking wonder hidden in the stunning Montana Mountains. There you’ll find unexpected romance, the redemption of broken pasts, and hope dawning anew.

Redemption Shores is a new Christian series full of relatable characters, complex family relationships, deeply moving romances, profound faith journeys, and the healing that comes from faith, hope, and love.

NOTE TO READER: This series is a saga, and is best read in order.

Redemption Shores Series Image - Christian Fiction

Series Link:

Redemption Shores Series - Awakening - Christian Fiction

Lake Shore Awakening, book 4 releasing March 28:

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