Writing with Purpose
It begins with the germ of an idea – a tiny niggle in the soul that signifies a new character or an interesting plot. Then, as we attend to it, ruminate through it, pray about it – the idea begins to grow. We cannot ignore it any more than we can ignore our growling stomachs an hour before lunchtime. We must pay attention to this new creation or it will be forever gone.
Creativity has no timeline, so it presents these tiny gems at 4 a.m. or midnight or in the middle of Sunday’s sermon. When we record the little blip that suddenly appears, then we acknowledge it so it can be nurtured into whatever project it needs to be.
Even after many years of freelance writing, I am still amazed by how God grows an idea. Once I have received it and acknowledged it in my idea file, he begins to grow it and define its purpose. I open junk mail and find a quote one of my characters will speak in chapter twelve. An article provides the research needed to round out my story or give credibility to my essay. A friend tells me, “I need a book about…” and I realize I have that exact book growing in me.
To be pregnant with an idea is a daunting and exciting task. We want the birthing of our words to be healthy with focus. But we must first endure intricate contractions of plot lines, character sketches and hand-drawn maps of locations. Even for those who write by the seat of their pants, somewhere in the follicles of brain matter lies a direction. For Christian writers, it is the omniscient God who knows where, how and by whom the story will develop.
The work required for the actual birthing may take years as numerous drafts develop, revisions polish and critique groups offer advice. The ultimate goal is to finish the project and market it, but for the Christian writer – another goal looms and carries with it the responsibility recorded in Matthew 28, “Go into all the world and make disciples.”
We make disciples through our words. We speak discipleship through videos and audio versions for those who cannot see but desperately long to understand. We offer words as a gift to the Almighty who knows a woman in Italy needs encouragement or a teenager in Arkansas needs friendly advice. We complete the process with a hard copy book given to struggling disciples. We market so that even more of the cyberspace world will someday find our words – maybe years after we have graduated to heaven.
Writing with purpose means we marinate each idea, use our time wisely, finish the project then leave the results up to God. The ultimate goal is to reach the world with the truth and then receive the greatest reward as the divine baritone speaks, “Well done.”
RJ Thesman has been a writer since she flipped open her Red Chief tablet and scribbled her first story. Eventually, she had to take a break from writing and go to school where she earned an education degree and taught at various levels. Thesman is a certified Christian life coach, a biblical counselor and a Stephen Minister. She currently works as program director and life coach at GateWay of Hope , a nonprofit that helps hurting women through counseling, coaching, prayer and support groups. With a variety of communications skills, Thesman is always writing and building more publishing credits to add to her more than 500 articles, four books, including the Life at Cove Creek Series (CrossRiver) and thirteen anthologies. She teaches writing workshops and enjoys helping beginning writers birth their words. As a writing coach, Thesman loves to help writers find their focus, decide on a writing plan and move closer to their writing dreams. Thesman is the mother of an adult son and enjoys reading, gardening and cooking – especially anything with blueberries. She lives in the heartland of Kansas with her son and an elderly cat.