I discovered soap operas in the 1990’s. Perhaps I should clarify that…. I began watching soaps with my parents’ approval in the early 90’s. My favorite was Another World. I watched Days of Our Lives, too, but could have lived without it. It just didn’t hold the same intrigue for me that Another World did. Perhaps that’s because my mother told me that Bay City, the setting for AW, was in Michigan. That was always so cool to me, that a show would be set in my home state.
Above the Line, Take One
As I grew older and closer to God, I began to wonder what a Christian soap opera would be like. For years I wondered about that. Could there still be good looking men, pretty women, bad choices, and romance if God was in the center of it all?
I found my answer in an unexpected place—the pages of Karen Kingsbury’s Above the Line series.
It started earlier than that, actually. There is a lot of soapishness (I sure hope that’s a word; if not it should be!) in all of her Baxter Family stories.
Above the Line, Take Two
That’s what kept the fans coming back, begging for “just one more” story about the Baxters. Still, it wasn’t until reading her most recent series (which does still feature some of the Baxter family characters) that I began to really feel that soap opera feeling.
The Baxters always seemed so insulated in their own little world. In the books of Above the Line, new characters are introduced who love God every bit as much as the members of the Baxter clan do. But they have a different back ground. Chase Ryan and Keith Ellison are former missionaries to Indonesia. Both feel God is leading them to make Christian movies. This puts them in direct contact every day with people who know nothing about Christ’s love. It also puts them in opposition to the “conventional” world of Hollywood. Keith’s daughter, Andi, is a student at Indiana University and questioning her parents’ beliefs. Her roommate is Bailey Flannigan, a character well-known to readers of Karen
Above the Line, Take Three
Kingsbury. She tries to be a good influence on Andi, while trying to make sense of her feelings for two young men. Cody Coleman is busy caring for his drug-addicted mother, working toward a college degree, and building a life after an injury during the Iraq war. The blending of all of these characters leads to situations every bit as entertaining as any seen on daytime television, but more heartwarming because God’s presence is always felt in the middle of everything.
I must say, I much prefer to read a good Karen Kingsbury book over watching the selections on daytime TV these days. Each relationship proves there is a lot more to romance than just sex.
Above the Line, Take Four
A message many young people in this world desperately need.
- Share this:
September 7, 2010 - Posted by Lynn McMonigal | Authors, Books, Reviews | Above The Line, Another World, Arts, Bailey Flannigan, Cody Coleman, Days of Our Lives, Indiana University, Karen Kingsbury, Keith Ellison, Soap opera, Take Four, Take One, Take Three, Take Two, Television
No comments yet.