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Christian Writer Vies for 'Advice Guru' Title for GMA

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By Josephine Vivaldo , Christian Post Reporter
February 1, 2011|7:32 pm

After 15,000 applications and three months, Carla Barnhill, former writer for Christianity Today, became one of the finalists to become the next “advice guru” for ABC’s Good Morning America.

Last week, Barnhill was interviewed on GMA by hosts George Stephanopoulos and Elizabeth Vargas where she talked about her faith and her outlook on life.

"I'm a person of faith and that does influence the way I look at life and the way I live my life but I have a very open theology,” she said.

She openly added, “I don’t have that sense that everybody needs to believe what I believe. I think there are a lot of ways to think and believe and think about God."

The Minneapolis resident has been in the Christian publishing business for 15 years. She has authored two books, and has worked as an editor of Christian Parenting Today as well as Associate Editor of Campus Life. She is the co-founder of The Mommy Revolution.

Barnhill has also spoken to thousands of mothers at MOPS conventions, retreats and churches. She is known for her innovative approach to motherhood, parenting and the spiritual formation of children.

The mother of three defined herself as someone who plays 18 different roles in any day. She made known that she’s good at helping people find the root of the problem and give them that extra nudge they need to walk the next step in life.

In a recent interview with Christianity Today, she talked about how faith influences her advice-giving. She said, “I believe in grace, forgiveness, compassion, goodness, second chances – all those things that are the hallmarks of our faith.”

“Everybody can agree that living as a person of grace and compassion and forgiveness and loving our neighbor as ourselves is always a better option, whether it comes from a place of faith or not.”

Barnhill made evident to GMA her strong Christian background, noting that she attended seminary school. She pointed out that she will ask herself of ways she can approach an answer without compromising her faith.

Meanwhile, some people's views have shown contempt to the idea of having a person of faith giving advice through a high-profile media outlet. People have been branding her for being narrow-minded, fundamentalist and intolerant.

In response to the negative comments, she said, “I was worried that the GMA folks might think that, but she was like, 'Don’t worry about it. We have all faiths represented here; we have a lot of people who are very overt about their faith. Don’t give it another thought.'”

While a poll based on more than 76,000 votes shows a preference for another one of the finalists, Cooper Boone, Barnhill assured herself that “the thing that I’ve reminded myself all along is that nothing that truly matters to me is on the line. I have work that I love, great people in my life, a wonderful family, and dear friends, and none of that is going away.

“The life that I’m coming from is a good one, and if nothing changes, that’s okay.”

GMA is on its final selection for the contest. Four contestants remain and only one will carry the celebrity status of “advice guru” as they face off in Daily Guru Duels based on viewer’s questions.

Votes can be submitted here.

 

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