Monday, March 9, 2015

Qualities to Embody

Micah 6:8 says, “He has showed you, O man, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.”

The prophet is relaying the qualities God would require of His children.

As a Christian writer we need look no further for what qualities might make up a Godly man or Godly hero. In Micah 3:8 there are three qualities that the Lord requires: act justly, love mercy, and walk humbly with God.

Contemplate how you might have a character prove these qualities within a story.

 Act justly – Is there a wrong to be righted? Is someone being treated wrongly and needs defending?

Love mercy – Does someone need compassion? Is forgiveness the better road than pointing a finger?

Walk humbly – Will the hero deflect praise away from himself? Are there ways to act behind the scenes instead of making a scene and taking credit? Will the hero redirect praise to God?

Now, we don’t want a perfect hero because there is no such person. Therefore, your hero might have to struggle to obtain some of the above qualities.

Simply by answering the questions posed above, you could create a character as well as the premise for a whole story. Try answering the questions. Really consider how you would show these qualities in your character.

What about you? Are you following these qualities as a Christian writer? Ask these questions of yourself:

Do you act justly in your writing? Do you act justly with other writers?

Do you love mercy? Do you show mercy through your writing as well as to other writers and readers?

Do you walk humbly with God? Do you try to take all of the credit for your success? Do you flaunt your success in from of other writers? Do you thank the true Author? 

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Look Out! He's a Runner!

The book of Jonah is well-known even among non-Christians. Jonah ran from God and what God had called him to do. He didn’t turn to a life of crime, but he didn’t follow God’s orders.
Christian writers might write a story with a similar character in mind. A main character might be running from God or his calling. Like Jonah, this character just may not want to do the task God has called him to do. He may rationalize and get involved in other “good” things to make up for his disobedience.

Make a list of possible callings God might place on a character’s life. These could range from becoming a vocational minister to going to a foreign country to serve as a missionary or even more simple like becoming a doctor to serve in a small town.

Now, beside each of the callings you listed write a short reason why a character might balk at wanting to follow through with that calling.

Choose one calling and its accompanying reason from your list. Create a short biographical sketch of a character who has been given the calling you chose and then explain the reasons he or she doesn’t want to follow this plan.

Add an alternative route your character is going to take instead of following the calling.

Will you character eventually make a turnaround? What will your character have to experience before he/she realizes it’s time to follow God’s call?

Think about yourself as a Christian writer. Are you fully following the calling God has placed upon you? There are various ways you could “run the other way.”

God may have called you to publish your work, but because it is too hard, you settle for writing for yourself. Maybe you have taken that rejection as a sign that you need to quit instead of a sign to keep learning and trying.
Write out what you feel you are called to do. If you aren’t sure, pray and ask God to show you. If you are doing what you feel is your calling but feeling discouraged, ask God to give you affirmation to spur you on.

Don’t forget -–if God has called you to it, He will help you do it. Work with Him by moving in the right direction! 

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Hard Messages

This blog has been on a long hiatus, but I am hoping to get back to sharing more creative spark-inducing writing for you, the Christian writer. Here's a brand new post. Try it out. Share personal experiences in the comments for everyone.

Obadiah is a short book in the Old Testament by the prophet by the same name. The prophets of the Old Testament had hard messages to deliver from God. However, God chose these prophets specifically for this task.

Sometimes the message God has for us as Christian writers might be hard to write.
Make a list of some subjects that might be hard for you to write about.

Has God called you to tackle a hard or delicate subject you would rather leave alone? Explain.

Just as God called the prophets but didn’t leave them alone, if God calls you to share a hard message, He will help you deliver it.

Choose one of the hard subjects you listed. Us a concordance to locate supporting Bible verses for this subject.

Brainstorm and jot down some ideas for stories to illustrate this message.

Remember, if you are called to write something specific, you are the only person that can write it because of the experiences God has brought into your life and His specific gifting upon you.

Make a list of the themes or messages God has led you to share through your writing. Write a prayer of thanksgiving for God using you as his prophet to share His specific message. Add in a plea for Him to help you to be faithful to deliver His messages.