Greetings from Sarah Sundin in still-rainy California! Today I have the joy of interviewing multi-published “sidewalk theologian” Cheri Cowell. Cheri’s here to share about her latest Bible study in the Following God series.
Welcome, Cheri! Please tell us about your book, Parables and Word Pictures.
In this thirteen-week workbook-style Bible study on the parables in the New Testament, readers will develop an ear for the message these stories convey—that the kingdom of God is at hand and is in you and me. On a glorious day the kingdom will come to completion when the Ultimate Parable, Jesus the Christ, returns and takes his throne. Until that time, we are the keepers of the kingdom. As subjects of this nation, we must live in such a way as to please the King.
That sounds fascinating! What inspired you to write this book?
In 2011 I was chosen for a journalist tour of the Holy Land by the Israeli Ministry of Tourism. When I walked where the parables of the Bible were shared, they came to life and were easier to understand. I had to share what I’d learned.
What surprised you the most during the research or writing of your book?
Not every pastor or theologian reads Scripture in context and therefore they’ve misinterpreted things, and it is okay to trust what the Lord is teaching you.
What do you hope readers will take away from this book?
The parables teach us about how we are to live as Kingdom people. Jesus told stories that the everyday person would understand, and when we understand the people of his day, we unlock the secrets to how these same truths apply to us.
Such an important lesson about reading Scripture. How do you share Christ in your writing?
I am known as your sidewalk theologian. I enjoy taking the difficult or hard-to-understand Bible truths and making them easy, like talking to a friend on the sidewalk of life.
What themes do you return to again and again in your writing?
The story of the Bible is the same from the beginning to the end—God’s mission from the beginning was to restore us to a relationship with Him.
Beautiful. And speaking of beauty, what would be your ideal writing place?
Nature. I love the beauty God has created. In our home I am blessed to have my office in the sunroom looking out on our oak trees, azaleas, hydrangeas, and the golf course beyond.
That does sound lovely! Other than writing, what ministries are you involved in?
I am the founder and CEO of EABooks Publishing ( www.EABooksPublishing.com ), where I help others tell the stories of the tremendous things God has done.
Do you have a “day job” or a previous career? Does it influence what or how you write?
I have a degree from Asbury Theological Seminary and that has given me the assurance I needed to know I could faithfully handle the Word of God.
That must keep you busy! Do you have any hobbies or activities or passions outside of writing?
My husband and I were featured on the T.V. show Barnwood Builders when they put one of their old barns up in the trees of the Smoky Mountains for our luxury treehouse business. www.MyTreehouseEscape.com .
How fun is that? If you can come out of that treehouse for a moment, would you please tell us about your next project?
I’m studying happiness and how we are wired for peace, joy, and happiness. But our brokenness has put a dent in our happiness habits. The good news is, happiness habits can be recovered, and the Bible shows us the way.