Adjusting Our Words

I’ve received many blessings since starting my journey to become a Christian writer. All the wonderful writing friends God has brought into my life is among the greatest. Their encouragement, guidance, counsel, and especially their prayers hold a special place in my heart. I pray daily for my “Writing friends, editors, and publishers.” Each morning, I also pray God sends a special blessing to each person who reads the words He leads me to write. I pray they encourage them to find a closer relationship with God.

For the past few years, I asked God to provide my writing friends with His inspiration and guidance so their efforts will find success. What I didn’t consider is that success is defined many ways. For some, success is seeing their name on a byline or book cover. Others define it as signing a publishing contract. Yet others seek the elusive fame and fortune that all writers start out believing they’ll achieve.

During my “God time” on June 14th of this year, He prompted me to adjust my words to pray for something other than success. Since success can be defined in lots of different ways, God wanted me to change to the way He defines success. The word I was led to is Impact. I believe the purpose of Christian writing, in its simplest form, is to show God’s light in this darkened world we inhabit. My friend Mrs. Audrey Frank (https://www.audreyfrank.com/) coined the term Writers of Light in an article a year or more ago to describe Christian writers. I’ve shortened it to Light Writers, as I believe this is the goal for each of us. As Christian writers, I think success is defined as our words having the positive impact in this world God planned for them.

What God is teaching me is to adjust my words to better represent Him. He has shown me that every word I think, speak, or write reflects Him in the world around me. Every word has an impact, positive or negative, on the testimony of my Christian faith. I’ve long held onto an acrostic that reminds me of how I am to T-H-I-N-K before I say or write something.

True. Is what you are about to say, or write, the truth? If not, then don’t say or write it. If you’re not sure, don’t use it. Words can hurt, so choose them carefully. Even though it might be true, it doesn’t mean you need to say it. “Lying lips are an abomination to the Lord, but those who deal truthfully are His delight.” (Proverbs 12:22, NKJV)

Helpful. Is what you are about to say or write meant to help or harm? Will your words bring about healing? Even if they’re true, if they don’t help, don’t use them. “There is one who speaks like the piercings of a sword, but the tongue of the wise promotes health.” (Proverbs 12:18, NKJV)

Inspiring. Is what you are about to say or write going to lift someone up or tear them down? Are your words humble or haughty and self-important? Are you sure? “A prudent man conceals knowledge, but the heart of fools proclaims foolishness.” (Proverbs 12:23, NKJV)

Necessary. Is what you are about to say or write necessary? Are we seeking to help or inspire someone, or to impress those around us? “A man shall eat well by the fruit of his mouth, but the soul of the unfaithful feeds on violence.” (Proverbs 13:2, NKJV)

Kind. Is what you are about to say or write kind? “And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you.” (Ephesians 4:32, NKJV)

How has God caused you to change the way you think, speak, or write? Click To Tweet

One of my favorite quotes from Plato is; Wise men speak because they have something to say; fools speak because they have to say something. I pray we always remember to apply a godly filter to everything we write and speak. As Light Writers (thanks again Ms. Audrey), our words and voices plant seeds for His kingdom.

Know I pray daily for each of you. I pray your words sow the seeds of God’s love in this world and achieve the impact He has planned for them.

God’s blessings,

42 thoughts on “Adjusting Our Words

  1. Many thanks, J.D., for your prayers and encouragement. I often conclude a note to my fellow writers with the challenge to Write On!, but today, perhaps I should say, Light On!

    1. “Light on!” I like that thought for today Ms. Lori. Thank you so much for all your encouragement, guidance, and sage wisdom as I travel on this journey to bring God the glory He so rightly deserves. God’s blessings ma’am. You brought the biggest smile this morning with your comments. Go figure, a dental professional who brings smiles. 😀

  2. What a powerful post! Thank you for the light you cast on your blogs and with your encouraging responses to blogs and in conversation. Sometimes we feel the pressure to write and get something “out there” or the pressure to fill silence. Plato’s words are worth keeping close to mind.

    1. Ms. Marilyn; as I think I mentioned to you at CCWC back in March, “You get what you give my friend.” In your fellowship, I receive far more than I give I think. Thank you so much for all your kind words of encouragement. I too “feel the pressure to produce” at times, but am learning it’s better to flow with the ebb and tide of God’s guidance than to pursue in my own strength. God’s blessings sweet friend.

  3. Good morning J.D., thank you for sharing His teaching with us. Impact vs. Success and T-H-I-N-K before we speak. Yes, Lord, I commit my spoken and written words to you. J.D. I have lots of writing ahead in my near future. I am thankful for He connected us! Have a beauty-full day on the farm.

    1. I am humbled by your words Ms Julie. Thank you so much for supporting me with prayer, friendship, and fellowship. Prayed extra long this morning for your peace and Jackson’s endurance.

    1. I love how, week in and week out, your kindness brightens my day Ms. Melissa. What a blessing you are ma’am. Thank you for being the sweet, wonderful, kind person God has made you to be.

    1. With all that’s going on in your life my friend; and you make the time to respond with such grace. You bring light indeed today Ms. Karen; magnifying His glory. Thank you for your kind comments ma’am. God’s blessings to you and your family.

  4. Your words always inspire me to think. There is always good advice in all your writings. Thank God for you as you give us so much to think about and be thankful for.
    God bless you always.

    1. What kind things to say Ms. Joyce. It’s important that we all take time to think, reflect, and seek God’s guidance for our lives ma’am. Regardless of what our life holds in store for us, as long as we are in Him, we can live it to the fullest. Thank you so much for your wonderful comments ma’am.

  5. This has given me a lot to ponder and I appreciate that. I sometimes wonder if I’m having any positive impact, if I’m speaking as the fool or the wise man. I think the enemy tries to distract us from seeing any positive impact from the words God’s put on our hearts. He wants to discourage us. i think that’s another reason the community you’re talking about is so important. Thank you for your ongoing encouragement and insight.

    1. As your posts do for me Pastor Joshua. Thank you for the enlightening and encouraging comments. Whether we call them “community of writers” or “family of faith”, the results are the same. We are lifted up, strengthen, sharpened, and improved upon when we remain in the unity of God’s purpose for our lives. God’s blessings sir.

  6. As always you have a wise word to share. Perhaps we all need to think a little more if we want to make the impact God needs for us to make, to be light in a dark world. Even believers struggle and are often in need of an encouraging word. Thanks for sharing.

    1. A comment from you ALWAYS brings a broad smile Ms. Gerry. Thank you so much for sharing your wisdom with me and so many. The Christian writing world is a better place because you’re in it ma’am. I’ve long viewed you as “the cutest little Yoda in the world.” You give such encouragement to everyone you meet and you dole out sage guidance so freely. Thank you for being the wonderful person God made you to be. I have written a poem that captures your spirit my friend. It’s entitled “A Servant’s Heart.” God’s blessings Ms. Gerry Wakeland.

  7. I love that you pray for your readers and those a part of your writing life. Thank you. The THINK acrostic is so helpful. I appreciate how you share from the wealth of your relationship with the Lord. You share from your heart.

    1. Ms. PJ; just like you ma’am, God fills us to overflowing if we allow Him. I’m just glad He allows us to serve Him with His overflowing love. Your kind words and encouragement are like one of God’s warm embraces when the ‘coldness’ of this life surrounds us. Thank you for inspiring so many of us ma’am. And say “Hey” to your friend Moo Cow for me. God’s blessings ma’am.

  8. Thank you Jim for your article today on your blog. As usual you come up with the subject matter that is dear to my heart and keeps me continually thinking . I don’t know if I could get up early in the morning and sit down and write with such depth and understanding as you do. I feel you truly are gifted in the Lord is using you in a great way

    1. Thank you Mr. Ray. I’d like to agree with you as to how talented and gifted I am, but I’ll be satisfied with just saying I’m blessed. With great friends, wonderful family, and a glorious and loving God who must find great joy in bringing good things out of the weakest vessels. Your encouragement is what drives me sir. Much appreciated my gracious friend.

    1. What a sweet thing to say Ms. Starr. You sure have a way with words ma’am. I’m sure glad to write for God too. This world needs more kindness, encouragement, and compassion like you bring my friend. Thank you for being who God made you to be Ms. Starr Ayers… a true blessing.

  9. Writers of Light. That wowed me as I read it. I wish I could write like Audrey Frank or Lori Hatcher, or you.
    Sometimes my Bible reading really inspires me and I write it all down in my journal, but not in a post where others can read it. I’m a journalist at heart and I find myself simply “reporting” about people and things, often with a tongue-in-cheek touch of humor.
    I am so thankful for writers like you who can touch hearts in so many ways. THANKS!

    1. I wish I could write like Ms. Lori Hatcher or Ms. Audrey Frank too Ms. Jackie! 🙂 Those two ladies are excellent examples of what God can do with lives submitted to Him aren’t they. As for being a “Light Writer” my friend. You may not see it in yourself, but I see your light shining brightly in this world. Maybe not in nonfiction prose or deep, thought-provoking Bible studies, but in the lessons you develop and teach, the games you so creatively design, and the love you so amply pour out into the various children’s ministries and mission projects I’ve watch you do. We are each unique and special creations for God’s glory. I am honored to stand beside you as your light shines brightly for His glory ma’am. God’s blessings.

  10. Impact. I came across that word earlier today and said, “That’s what I want to do—make an impact on people’s lives through my words. To encourage and bring hope in Christ.” Enjoyed your post as usual. Thanks J.D.

    1. Can there be a better life goal than to impact someone’s life for God’s kingdom my friend? That is a pretty powerful word isn’t it Ms. LuAnn. Thank you so much for your comments, and your prayers and encouragement ma’am.

  11. How comforting to know that I’m being prayed for as a “writer” when you pray, J.D., and please know that I do the very same thing! I pray specifically for “Christian” writers that they would influence the world for God’s kingdom, but I also pray for those whose writing is anything-but-Christian, that those words will cause readers to feel so empty and lost that they seek out the Lord. And, I, too, pray for editors and publishers in that collective prayer. Thank you for the acrostic with accompanying verses – great way to keep those thoughts in mind. May God bless your words to touch many lives. As many have commented on here before, J.D., your kind words have certainly encouraged and blessed many fellow writers.

    1. Ms. Julie. I know you pray ma’am; I can feel them moving in my life. Thank you so much for being so willing to lift other writers, the readers of our labors, and those who help us reach those readers up in prayer. What a difference it makes ma’am. God’s blessings dear friend.

    1. What a kind thing to say Ms. Tammy. I am ‘tickled pink’ to know you appreciated my efforts. And thank you so much for subscribing to my blog. This “platform building” stuff is perhaps the hardest part of becoming a writer. Having friends like you to support, teach, and pray my way through sure makes the journey much easier. Thank you ma’am.

  12. So very true! I was blessed by reading your post, and blessed by knowing you pray for me as a fellow writer. I too pray for my writer friends. We are and have a unique fellowship.
    God bless you, my friend, as you continue to share the Light.

    1. Thank you Ms. Connie. We are surely blessed to be a part of this writing community we share ma’am. It really is an honor to pray for each other and our readers. I know your words have had a positive impact in my life ma’am. God’s blessings.

  13. That Plato quote is golden and I love your acrostic as a filter for our words. Often we let our ego get in the way and are too quick to speak. A thought I try to keep in mind to tame the ego is “To be kind is more important than to be right!”

    1. “Being kind is more important than being right” I love that statement Ms. Candyce. I have a feeling that one is going on my desktop as wallpaper or background. I know I’ve sure struggled with that in my past ma’am. Thank you so much for your wisdom and your friendship.

    1. Aww shucks Ms. Cathy. I wish I would T-H-I-N-K more often that I do my friend, but God is working on that. I’m just so grateful He is a patient teacher. Thank you so very much for your kind words and encouragement ma’am. I pray that one day God might allow me to impact lives with my words in the same way you and many others do ma’am. God’s blessings to you and the wonderful Mr. Brian.

  14. “A Godly filter”–I’m working on it, but I still need help. I’m thankful that God continues to mold and shape us (like the Master potter). And, I’m grateful that He works on my heart, too, so that what I say comes out filtered by His love, kindness, and compassion. Thanks for your encouragement on something I’ve been working on. I want to be a “light writer.” May God bless you, my friend.

    1. Am so thankful our Lord is willing to continue to recast, reshape, and re-fire us in His “kiln of love” Ms. Katherine. It’s a heat that refines and hardens, not harms isn’t it ma’am. As for being a “Light Writer” my friend; you are well on your way as your posts, articles, and Bible Studies have brought much light into my life ma’am. God’s blessings.

  15. Such a wonderful, inspiring post J.D. The Lord is clearly directing your steps and you gently guiding others of us to guard our steps. Thank you, J.D.! You are a blessing.

    Peace and grace,
    Tammy

    1. Am humbled by your words Ms. Tammy. God has certainly blessed you with a king and giving heart young lady. I pray I yield to God’s direction more with each passing day ma’am.

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