Monday, March 19, 2012

Writing For Him

Phyllis Qualls Freeman

My first official writing assignment was to compose thirteen devotions for Pathway Press. I was ecstatic with the opportunity. Then, it was time to begin writing. I sat at my kitchen table in front of my old Underwood typewriter and stared at the blank white paper curled around the cylinder. Words would not come. No words seemed sufficient to bring to life the Scripture references.

I bowed my head and let the tears flow freely. God, who do I think I am? How dare I speak for You to these people? I’m a simple housewife.

After crying and praying, I wiped my tears and began to write. I could do it because I came to realize God chooses the weak and the lowly so that no one may boast before Him 1 Corinthians 1:29 (NIV). He does not give assignments to angels to write for Him. He gives us a challenge and an opportunity to represent Him to the world through our words. Because of our weakness, God’s power can be seen.

Here are a few suggestions for fulfilling the Call to write:

1. Pray before you begin, asking the Holy Spirit to give you a fresh comprehension of truth and wisdom for the readers of that particular publication. We cannot see what the Holy Spirit perceives in the lives of the readers. Allow Him to guide your thoughts and your writing to those readers.

2. Be sensitive to the voice of God within you for the theme and the spiritual lesson to come through your article or devotion. Re-read your material to check for religious or strong personal bias. Allow the Spirit of God to reveal truth to you and express that truth to the reader. If your heart says, that sounds harsh, take a deep breath and re-write it in love.

3. Write purely. Let every illustration and each word you write reflect integrity and appropriateness. This way, we allow our audience to read what we’ve written with a pure mind as we enhance their commitment to purity.

4. Creatively challenge the reader to consider a particular spiritual truth. Wrap truth in a curious but honest package. Ask God to give you a fresh way to speak about a common issue. We are not only word-weavers, we plant and water truth issues.

5. Reach beyond their eyes to their spirit. Inside each of us is a spiritual, God-sized, emptiness until we come to know Christ. Many do not know or perhaps don’t comprehend what some of us well understand about God. Our writing can lead them toward enlightenment of the joys available in Christ. We present truth issues which speak answers to their own void and allow the Holy Spirit to develop the seeds toward harvest.

6. Offer hope. Their world may be full of strife, pain, or devastation. People often live day-to-day with inadequate paychecks and may attend churches which present rigid restrictions instead of spiritual restoration. People long to breathe in refreshing life, they need a gentle wind which blows away the cobwebs of confusion and offers renewal of hope in Jesus Christ. “As writers, we echo God’s voice answering the cries, telling men and women to hold fast because there’s hope.” Author, Ann Tatlock.

Twenty-five years later, I still write for the above publication and others. Let me correct that -- I’m working together with God to stir a spiritual breeze of renewal in the reader.