We are so excited to share this new author interview with you. Also, if you haven’t seen it on social media, be sure to enter the giveaway in partnership with Katrina McCain! We are partnering with Katrina to give away two copies of Beyond Being Good and one copy of Seven Years of Love. Make sure to enter for your chance to win! Check out her interview below. We talk about all things imperfection, marriage and the things she has learned along the way. Thank you, Katrina, for being an MW friend and for partnering with us.
Modern Witnesses (“MW”): Hi Katrina! So exciting to have you back to talk about your books. Your first book, published in 2018, Beyond Being Good: Seeking Christ’s Perfection for Our Imperfect Hearts, explores your own personal stories, and it touches on purpose and mission. What inspired you to write about your personal experiences?
Katrina McCain (“KM”): Beyond Being Good was a project I didn’t realize I was creating. I began the task of editing old work- seeing my personal growth as a believer and adding more scripture, deeper life lessons and vulnerability into what had already been written. Within a few days, I realized I had the makings of something more than a blog post. It became the first few chapters of this precious pink book!
MW: Writing based on experience takes a lot of vulnerability. Was there a story you hesitated to share and why?
KM: All of the stories! Yes, so vulnerable, right? The funny thing is, even during publication, it never occurred to me that people I know and love would read it. It was scary enough sharing my heart with strangers, let alone my cousins or my work friends. But I would say chapter 2 was difficult to put out into the world. It required a lot of honesty and a revisitation of who I was as a person before Jesus changed my life. Scary stuff, but necessary information to share in my mission of pointing to the perfect love of Jesus.
“But I would say chapter 2 was difficult to put out into the world. It required a lot of honesty and a revisitation of who I was as a person before Jesus changed my life. Scary stuff, but necessary information to share in my mission of pointing to the perfect love of Jesus.”
MW: When you were writing Beyond Being Good, who did you envision this book being for?
KM: I’ve always had a heart for the “in-between” girl; The girl who wrestles with being in the world but not of the world; the one who keeps getting confronted with personal sin in her pursuits of Christ. Many people have mistaken this book to be for someone who is struggling with perfectionism, but that’s not who this book is for. This book is for the girl who knows she isn’t perfect, but craves the reminders that her imperfections won’t disqualify her from the perfect love of Christ.
MW: Why was perfection an important thing for you to address?
KM: Because perfection is a lie and a deception. If perfection could be attained, we wouldn’t need Jesus, we wouldn’t need a prayer life, and we wouldn’t need the Holy Spirit. There is no such thing as a perfect life this side of Heaven, and people, women in particular, need freedom from the lie that says you need to get yourself together. You can’t. That’s why Jesus came, and we can rest in His perfection instead of wrestling with our lack of it.
“If perfection could be attained, we wouldn’t need Jesus, we wouldn’t need a prayer life, and we wouldn’t need the Holy Spirit.”
MW: Is there anything you do, a thought process or perspective shift you engage in, when you feel pressure to be “good”?
KM: Yes. I cry and pray about it! Honestly, sometimes, It’s like, “Girl… why are you still dealing with that?” “Why are you still doing that?” The disappointment of our personal failings and struggles can take a toll on us spiritually, emotionally and mentally, but prayer takes the focus off of what I am doing wrong and places it on the good things God is doing in spite of my sin and shame. He’s such a good Father and His mercies never run out!
MW: You most recently published Seven Years of Love: For the Woman Who Desires to Love Well. What inspired this project?
KM: Again, random writing turned into a book! I was hoping to submit an article for publication. I wanted to focus on sacrificial love and the spiritual dilemma of the “me first” mentality in our culture. I took three different approaches and realized there was too much to cover for a one page article. So, I ended up with three chapters in one week, and the book took me into 2020 and became my COVID project!
MW: What would you say is the most important lesson of all of the ones you present in the book?
KM: The most important lesson would be that loving like Jesus does require our sacrifice, but it never ends in loss. What we give will be multiplied, whether that’s giving of our patience, our grace, our trust or even our confessions. Whatever we give in marriage, we gain back in more fuller ways. It’s when we attempt to ensure that we get something: respect or consideration or get what we feel we deserve … that’s when and where we fall into the messy cycle of obligation and performance, which never results in God’s abundance.
“The most important lesson would be that loving like Jesus does require our sacrifice, but it never ends in loss.”
MW: What do you believe sets your book apart from other books on marriage?
KM: Number one, it’s not a book about how to get your husband to change or how to get your marriage to fulfill your desires. This book takes us on a journey not of self-discovery, but of self-sacrifice: loving when you don’t want to, loving the difficult people who might be attached to your marriage, loving your husband where he is instead of trying to push and coach him into places he’s not yet been called to live out; learning to trust that God will complete His good work in our marriages for His glory and not for our personal satisfaction. It’s definitely not a “how to” book. It’s more of a “why God said this” book. So we dig deep into God’s purposes for marriage and our privilege to be married. Lots of scriptures. Tons of stories and life lessons. It was an honor to write it!
MW: You have a quote in the book that says, “What a difference there is between seeing love and living it out.” In this day and age, there are many who haven’t even seen a loving example as you did, while growing up. What would you say to the person who hasn’t seen love in an exemplary form?
KM: Honestly, that’s my husband’s story. He didn’t grow up in a home under a married couple. He witnessed a great example of a Father but was not exposed to the daily example of a husband. I know he’s not alone, especially in our culture today. So, my words, filled with grace, would be to say that, though people may not have given you a good example of marriage, God’s Word and His Spirit can still teach you, develop you and lead you into cultivating a Christ centered marriage. All that people can do is show you; only God can change you and equip you. He will do it, regardless of your past or lack of examples.
MW: Do you have any rituals while writing?
KM: Prayer first. Scripture always. Coffee in my favorite mug with 116 playing in the background. I know that sounds crazy, especially with writing on the topic of marriage, but Lecrae and Tripp and Andy Mineo get my adrenaline going. I start thinking and typing in high speed!
MW: Are there any new books on the horizon?
KM: Ha! I have no idea!!! I do have some thoughts circulating about a few topics, but right now, with a little one almost here, I’m focusing my writing on 5 day devotionals through the You version Bible App. Maybe one day there will be a book #3. Until then, I hope to continue to share and encourage others though biblical platforms, podcasts and social media. I just hope to touch one heart a day. That’s my goal. If God chooses to use my writing to do that, I am thankful.
Katrina McCain is a former fashion model from Charlotte, NC. She is an author, a devotional writer for the Bible App and has a heart to serve women from all walks of life and stages in their faith.
She is married to her husband, Jarrett, and is mother to two little girls with one on the way. She loves sharing on podcasts, magazine articles, speaking in person or responding to emails sent by her readers. In her spare time, you can find her drinking caramel lattes, scoping museums with her husband or riding horses with her girls.
Find more of Katrina’s work and writing here: www.katrinamccain.com.