“If there’s a book that you want to read, but it hasn’t been written yet, then you must write it.”
Monthly Archives: August 2013
Mary Shelley, the author of Frankenstein, was born on this day in 1797. She began work on the story while in Switzerland in 1816 with a group of friends that included Lord Byron and the man who would become her husband, poet Percy Shelley. On a rainy day, the group read a book of ghost stories together. Lord Byron encouraged everyone in the group to write a ghost story. She continued to work on the story and the book was published in 1818 without her name on it. Instead, it came out from an anonymous writer. By this time, Mary and Percy were married. Since Percy wrote the introduction to the book, many people thought he wrote it. The book became popular and the story continues to be popular today. It’s been made into two films.
This is a great piece that shows how one idea can be written many different ways. I hope it inspires you:
Whether you turn to the right or to the left,
your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying,
“This is the way; walk in it.”
Isaiah 30:21, NIV (1984)
How does God guide you in the way you should go? How do you develop spiritual ears to hear His voice? What has happened when you followed His guidance? What happened when you didn’t?
How can you use this verse:
- What personal stories can you share in a personal experience piece? What takeaway value can you give your readers?
- What tips and insights can you share in a how-to article?
- How can you use this verse as a theme for your fiction? How does it influence your characters?
- How can you use it in your poetry?
- What kind of devotion can you build around this verse?
- Do you know of someone who lives out this verse? Can you write a personality profile of them?
- How can you explain this verse to children through stories and articles?
- How does this verse influence your relationship with God? How does it affect the way you serve Him?
- How does it influence your marriage?
- How does it affect the way you parent?
- How does it change the way you approach your work?
- How does it change your relationships?
How do you raise your child in the Lord? How can you share that through your writing?
Hannah begged God for a child. She promised God that she would commit her child to Him if He gave her a child. Finally, she gave birth to a son—Samuel. She brought him to the temple and gave him to the Lord.
God doesn’t ask us to take such an extreme step with our children but He wants us to dedicate them to Him and to dedicate ourselves to raising them in the Lord.
What does that mean? How do you raise a child in the Lord? Your writing can guide parents in this important commitment.
Advice for New Parents
How can you help new parents begin this journey of godly parenting? When is the best time for them to make decisions about their faith involvement – church attendance, faith at home, etc.? How can they share their faith with their children?
What is the importance of dedicating their child to the Lord? How do they involve other family members in the faith life of their child?
If they do a public dedication ceremony of their child, how do they work out the practical issues? How do they choose a dedication verse for their child? How do they celebrate the child’s dedication with family?
New parents need to think of the day-to-day implications of dedicating their child to the Lord. You can offer them the help they need.
Faith in the Home
To raise godly children, parents need to be grounded in their own faith. How can parents ensure that they are showing their children authentic faith? How can they guide their children in the ways of God? How can they build a faith environment in the home? How can they introduce them to Christ? How do they encourage them to grow in the Lord, even at a young age?
How can they stay in God’s Word with all the responsibilities of raising a family? What is the importance of prayer in their own lives? How can they effectively pray for their children?
How can parents maintain their commitment to Christ, and keep it alive and vibrant?
When Children Grow Older
As children grow older, creating a faith environment becomes more of a challenge. How do parents combat the secular messages that children receive outside of the home? How do they help their children deal with doubt? How do they help their children trust God?
How can they handle a child who walks away from their faith? How do they handle rebellion?
How do they help their children discover their spiritual gifts? How do they help their children grow in their faith?
As a writer, you can help parents point their children to Christ and create a faith-filled home. Think about your personal experiences you can share. Think about tips and insights you can offer. You can also write devotions for parents, poetry and use your insights as a theme in fiction.
Use your writing to help parents dedicate their children to the Lord and commit themselves to be godly parents.
© Deborah Christensen
In 1814, Sir Walter Scott’s first novel, titled Waverly, was published. Jane Austen felt jealous and wrote this letter to her niece:
“Walter Scott has no business to write novels, especially good ones.—It is not fair.—He has fame and profit enough as a poet, and should not be taking the bread out of other people’s mouths.—I do not like him, and do not mean to like Waverly if I can help it—but fear I must.”
Today, Jane Austen’s books are much more popular than Sir Walter Scott’s.
Here’s a great suggestion:
The Lord will guide you always; he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land
and will strengthen your frame. You will be like a well-watered garden,
like a spring whose waters never fail.
Isaiah 58:11, NIV (1984)
How does God guide you? How have you seen Him guide you in the past? How did He satisfy your needs when you were in a sun-scorched land? What did that “land” look like? How did He strengthen you as you went through it? How did you see God turn your life into a well-watered garden? How did He pour His water into your life and show you that He never fails?
How can you use this verse in your writing?
- What stories can you tell in a personal experience article? What anecdotes can you use as an introduction to a nonfiction article?
- What tips and insights can you offer in a how-to article?
- How can you use this verse in fiction?
- How can you use this verse in poetry?
- How can you use this verse in a devotion?
- Do you know someone who’s lived out this verse? Can you interview them? What kind of personality profile can you write on them?
- How can you use this verse in writing for children?
- How can you apply this verse to marriage issues, parenting issues, financial issues, emotional health, spiritual health, physical health, work issues, relationship and family issues, singleness, senior issues, etc.
Yesterday, I wrote about the persecution of Christians around the world. It’s an issue that’s close to my heart. I’ve written several articles about it because I want to make people aware of the problem. And, I want to call them to action on this issue.
What issue are you so passionate about that you want to call people to action? How do you call them to action? Through fiction? Through nonfiction? Through poetry? Through some other writing?