Welcome to Chatting with Authors. Today I have Elsa Kok Colopy author of Pure Love, Pure Life on the blog. Join us for a chat about teens, sexuality and making choices.
Hi Elsa, thanks for stopping by, before we dig in, please introduce yourself to readers.
I’m the youngest of five—four older brothers and me. Yeah, I know. I had to fight for everything. And I was forever trying to prove that I could do everything they could do. I climbed trees, went cliff diving, rode a motorcycle. I’m grateful for that part—I did a lot of cool things trying to keep up with those guys. Of course we’re all grown up now and mostly tamer (though I think I’ll always be the adventurous sort). In addition to all that, I love to write, read and hang with people who make me laugh. I’m crazy about Jesus and very sweet on my studly husband. I have four kids (we’re a blended family). After 12 years as a single parent family, my girl and I blended with my husband and his three children. To round out the blend, we have two pups who run us ragged. It’s a good life.
What inspired you to write Pure Love, Pure Life?
I didn't make the best choices as a teenager and it hurt me in a lot of different ways. It took a while to get things straight and for God to get my life back on track. After I finally got it—just how much God loved me—and as I began to really understand his heart on purity, things changed. I started living purity in my day-to-day life. Not to follow rules, but because I started trusting that God knew what was for my best. It changed everything for the good. As a result, I have this deep desire to share this stuff with teens who are in the thick of it. It would be an incredible honor to me to be able to help them figure out what pure living really looks like.
I wonder how many of us (those past our teen years) can say that. I know I wish I could go back and shake common sense into my sixteen year old self. Seeing how your book deals with teens and sexuality- are you involved with the youth in any way?
I've always been involved with youth. I grew up in the camping system and was forever involved in Christian camps as a camper, then as a counselor. I worked with after school programs, day camps and church youth programs as well. I also come from a huge family, so in addition to my kids and their friends, I've always been a doting cheerleader in the lives of my nephews and nieces. I love teens. They are passionate, real and full of the best kind of questions, thoughts and ideas. I think they get a bad rap sometimes… I would love to help them show the world just how radical (in all the best ways) they can be.
That's awesome! I feel the same way about teenagers, seeing them day in and day out, I think they have so much more to offer than what media and society dictates them to be. What do hope that readers walk away with after reading your book?
I hope readers walk away with the understanding that purity is SO MUCH MORE than a white-knuckled grip on virginity. Purity is not just about the things you say “no” to, it’s also about all the good things worth pursuing. I love the idea of teens catching this vision and changing the world as they pour their passion and energy into the good.
What a refreshing approach to purity and for sure beats the message: Virginity is just a right of passage. Its sad how many teens I hear talking about hook-ups and casual sex. As a teen mom and now a mom of three girls (one a teenager), I'm always on the side of purity and encouraging the message of sex being worth the wait....for committed love...... after a masters degree....and not until 30....(lol)
Ok- enough with the heavy...lets talk fun!
What are you reading right now?
I just finished reading the Twilight series. I was curious to see what drew people to sparkly vampires. I like to think the purity element was a huge part of it—how cool is that? I’m also reading Celebration of Discipline by Richard Foster and yes, a five month old Reader’s Digest that sits in our bathroom.
Twilight was great! Now just skip Twilight the movie and your thoughts on the innocent love will remain intact....LOL...
Last great movie you saw?
I liked Dolphin Tale. I’m a sucker for cute fish.
What’s playing on your iPod?
Holly Starr. She’s new, young and has an amazing voice. Love her.
Ive never heard of her, Ill have to check it out. Can you share any future projects with us?
I’m thinking about some teen fiction. Cool teen fiction with characters that suck you right in. At least that’s what I’m dreaming of… we’ll see what happens!
Sweet! Cant wait to see what you create. Thanks for stopping by today Elsa, here's hoping Pure Love, Pure Life will reach the heart of a teen who needs it!
Today I have one copy of Pure Love, Pure Life to give away to a reader at Tina~Reviews. I would love to pass this along to a teenager or parent, aunt, grandma- who wants to give this to a teen. To enter please leave a comment. Winner will be drawn Jan 31, 2012.
Pure Love, Pure Life
by Elsa Kok Colopy
Jan, 2012 by Zondervan
When you think of purity, what comes to mind? Perfect behavior? Impossible standards? Everything focused on waiting for that special guy? If so, you're not alone. The good news is purity isn't just a list of don'ts---don't think that way, don't look that way, don't act that way. It's a God-designed plan for a happy life. Honest, humorous, and real, Pure Love, Pure Life provides practical tools to help you navigate the temptations and frustrations you face every day, stories from girls who have been there, and tips on what to do if your pure life takes a detour. Discover a new vision of purity, how you can live it in today's broken reality, and why it's worth the effort.