In the genre of Christian Romance, we are told to keep our characters clothed and appropriate at all times. However, as I was listening to a sermon on Genesis, chapter two, last weekend, I started thinking about how important it is for our characters to be naked, based on verse twenty-five – “And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed.” (NKJV)
Ok, before everyone faints from the shock or starts writing me emails, let me explain. True love only occurs when we are totally honest and totally vulnerable with each other. This is true whether we are speaking of love between a man and a woman or between a person and God. We have to be naked before each other. Unfortunately, our characters have a strong desire to find and sew fig leaves.
He is still in contact with his old girlfriend – Fig Leaf
She secretly loves his brother – Fig Leaf
He doesn’t want her to know how he really feels about watching girls through a hold in the locker room wall – Fig Leaf
She is afraid he won’t like her if he finds out her father is in jail – Fig Leaf
It is important to note that the sap from the green parts (including leaves) of fig plants is an irritant which will cause a rash on the skin.
So, we need to take a look at our characters’ fig leaves – the things that come between them. And how to we uncover our characters? Does a person or circumstance yank them away layer after layer? Or do our characters scrub them away to get rid of the itch? Figuring out the answers to these questions and exposing each one is the heart of our story.
Only at the end, when our characters are naked and unashamed with each other, can there be true romance.