One of the amazing things about being a writer is how it gives one a glimpse of what it is like to be God. No, I do not have the power to alter realities … but I do have the power to alter “unrealities.” And oh what an exciting prospect. I can make new worlds and tweek them to be just what I want them to be. I can control the weather, making it rain when the crops need water, and clear when the picnic needs to run its course. But one thing I still have no control over is … the human character.
So, I end up with these characters who, even though I want them to do one thing, I scratch my head and say, “He’d never do that.” It just doesn’t fit with who he is. But what if that thing I want him to do would really help? I might just have to prod him in some way. Give him some sort of life-changing event that will make him want to do that one thing … even if it hurts.
Of course, I could create nice little robotic characters who do what I say and treat everyone nice, including me. But that’s like when your husband says he loves you right after you tell him you want him to. Like kissin’ your sister. Though, I’m not going to say I know what God was thinking when He gave us Free Will, I can understand how He might just want us to choose Him on our own, and not just because He told us to.
So I do it. Sometimes I cringe as my character traverses this difficult land, and I have even shed a tear as I read through the scenario, but I know it’s necessary. My character needs it to grow. So I let it happen.
I suspect God does the same thing.