Welcome Readers and New Subscribers! This is Dee. We have a treat today! David Telbat agreed to be interviewed by me, in which he reveals his heart for ministry. Enjoy this interview with D.I. Telbat, and getting to know him.
Dee’s Interview with D.I. Telbat
Dee: Hi, David. Thank you for taking the time to do this interview with me. I know you are extremely busy with your ministries and writing.
David: Sure, glad to do it.
Dee: Dark Liaison is the first book in your COIL Series. What inspired you to write this book?
David: Initially, I wanted to craft a really good Christian spy novel. Not only something exciting for all readers, but something with a purpose. Not everyone inserts themselves into the characters of an adventure, but for those who do, I wanted to inspire readers to activate, so to speak, as “Special Forces Christians.”
Dee: So, what purpose do you feel you’ve embedded into Dark Liaison?
David: Overall, it’s the purpose to care about Christians around the world. We’re not only blessed in America, we’ve become spoiled, and it’s easy to forget that many believers are under constant attack. Also, the purpose to care about the people who feel called to assist or protect those under attack. So, bringing awareness of this spiritual aspect has been my objective, with a side purpose to challenge us all to become more active.
Dee: Did you plan on a whole series when you wrote Dark Liaison?
David: Not at first. At first, Dark Liaison was a novel nearly 600 pages long. I was advised to split it into two books, especially since there were two parallel plots. It was great advice. It took an extra year of work, but Liaison was finally split, and Dark Hearted became book two of the COIL Series. As Dark Hearted was being edited, I wrote books three and four. Jaguar Dusk and many of the short stories came along more recently.
Dee: Your main character in the first two books is Corban Dowler. Tell us about him.
David: Well, physically, I created him as an underdog. He seems a little out of shape and past his prime. But mentally and spiritually, he’s an elite soldier. He has vulnerabilities, but he puts the needs of others first, and because of his faith, God watches over him. He’s passionate about his field agents. I think I like that loyalty most about him.
Dee: Corban Dowler may be a respectable man, but you’ve made him an outcast. Why is that?
David: I think it’s only natural for a dedicated Christian to become an outcast from his old friends of the world. The government dislikes Corban for his unwavering faith, yet, because he’s uncompromisingly honest, they also rely on him. So Corban is a realistic depiction of a Christian today who’s actively given to God’s will. It can be lonely. But there’s a lot to do for those willing to act.
Dee: Are you speaking from experience?
David: Well, I’ve been in some spiritually dark places, smothered by evil. I’ve felt alone and singled out. If I hadn’t been through my own struggles and brokenness, I would not have been able to write this book.
Dee: Has your prison ministry with inmates played a part in Dark Liaison?
David: It has, mostly in the idea to challenge us all to go and do what God has called us for, even if it’s risky, costly, or humbling. It’s easy to go to the church down the street. It’s hard to start a church where there are none, or to visit with hated and hateful inmates, or desperate widows and orphans. Those are the needs we need to respond to, besides the need of all people for salvation.
Dee: You were careful in these books to develop nonlethal weaponry. Why so much concern about killing the enemy?
David: Mostly, it’s a reminder to American Christians that we’re called to love our enemies. Churches get swept up with patriotic themes of vengeance and killing the enemy, sometimes using biblical passages out of context to go to war or kill. The bottom line? It’s real hard to show Christ’s love to my enemy when I’m shooting him to death. Christians are called out for something greater. We must listen to God in this area, not man. The soldiers in Dark Liaison are the toughest brutes and ex-assassins ever, but their new lives in Christ force them to utilize their skills through the lens of God’s Word.
Dee: What kind of research did you do for Liaison?
David: I spent a lot of time confirming the latest reports about Christian persecution in the countries we visit in the book—North Korea, Colombia, Lebanon, and others. Those conditions and sentiments in the book are all accurate. As for the Special Forces, espionage, and smuggling aspects—I have my sources. [smile]
Dee: Is there anything else you’d like to add about Dark Liaison or your writing?
David: Well, a couple of things. I’d like to thank those that have helped with this project—the editors and proofreaders that have put in their time, early readers with their input, and my cover artists.
On another note, I would love to know that my books inspired and motivated people to serve God and support his servants—starting a “movement” of sorts. And I’ve gotten some very heartwarming notes from a few to that effect. That greatly pleases me. I praise the Lord that He has seen fit to use my hands. I can only pray that my other books and stories that revolve around Dark Liaison and The COIL Series inspire others to pause and say, “That’s awesome! I want to go and do that for Jesus Christ, too!”
Dee: Thank you, David. I hope we can do this again sometime.
David: Thank you. Sure, I’d be glad to.
Thank you, Readers, for joining us for this interview. If there are any questions that you would like to ask David Telbat, you can send them through our contact form on the site. You may also enjoy David Telbat’s interview with Corban Dowler and other interviews here.
COMING UP: Next time, we have a true “Glimpse of a Modern-day Bible Smuggler.”