Monday, May 24, 2021

Shining In A Dark World


Betty Thomason Owens





Our world is in travail, but we are not overcome. Even if we suffer illness and loss, our outlook has not changed. The Word of God still stands. Our Father remains in control. Jesus is still King, and sweetest of all, He is still our Savior.

With His banner over us, how can we not shine in a dark world? We are called to be the light and the salt. But we can’t shine or add flavor on our own. We shine when God is on the inside of us.

Within this truth, we find our purpose, something that becomes more relevant with each passing day. As writers, we have a calling. We are called “according to His purpose.”

“For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.” Ephesians 2:10 ESV

“And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.” Romans 8:28 ESV

We have a purpose that God prepared beforehand. He knew when, and he knew where we would be needed. Like Esther, we all have “such a time as this.” Now is the time for all of us, as Christian/inspirational writers to discern the will of God concerning our writing, our path, and our calling.

We, the created ones, can become creators of worlds. Through our stories, we can inspire and train others in righteousness. Some of our readers would never open a Bible, or set foot inside a church, but they may pick up our story. If we write as the Spirit gives utterance, our words can captivate and elevate our readers, opening their hardened hearts to something they had never imagined.

Love. Not the earthly kind of love that is touted in our present world and circumstances, but a deep and satisfying love that can only come from our Father. A love that produces joy and life.

How do we begin? For me, this type of writing begins with prayer and time spent alone with God. If this is truly my calling, as I believe it is, and my main concern is for others, I know He will hear my prayers and bless the work of my hands.

Meditate on His word. Sometimes, a particular verse inspires me, and I find a way to weave it into my story. I don’t have to quote scriptures in my writing, though sometimes I do. I can do what Jesus did—find a way to express it through story. He spoke in parables. Some of those parables were confusing to the hearers, but His stories made people think, which may have been part of His purpose. Modern-day parables can do the same.

The definition of a parable is a story with a moral or a message. Ever read a story like that? A simple message, like a tiny seed of faith, can stick in our minds and begin a life change.

Read a few of those parables, found in the gospels. Jesus talks about ordinary life situations that mirror the times He lived in. He seldom mentioned God or quoted scripture in the parables, but the message was there. Hidden. Subtle. Powerful. Moving.

That is my goal for my writing. It’s a lofty one that requires commitment and sometimes, plain old obedience. There are days when I would rather not spend the time up front—the tithe of my time—given willingly to God. I want to jump right in and start writing. When I do that, my inspiration tends to fizzle out into a dead end.

This work we do is important enough to own our full attention. Lives are at stake. Eternal destinies hang in the balance. Am I overstating it? I don’t think so. The times in which we live are proof enough. As we have so recently witnessed, things can change in an instant.

I could be writing my final story. What will it say about me? Is it important enough to last, or will it fade away like a blossom in summer?

Most writers, especially inspirational ones, would join me in saying, if even one life is changed by our words, all those hours spent planning and plotting and dreaming and writing will be worth it. Every single moment of it.




Betty Thomason Owens is a multi-published, award-winning author of historical fiction, and fantasy-adventure. An active member of American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW), she serves as treasurer of the Louisville Area group. She served four years on the planning committee of the Kentucky Christian Writers Conference.

Her works include the Legacy series and Kinsman Redeemer series, published by Write Integrity Press, and Jael of Rogan two-book fantasy series in a second edition, published by Sign of the Whale BooksTM, an imprint of Olivia Kimbrell PressTM.

You can learn more about her at BettyThomasonOwens.com. Connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram.

 




















8 comments:

  1. So true, Betty. We have a higher calling when we write.

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  2. "Most writers, especially inspirational ones, would join me in saying, if even one life is changed by our words, all those hours spent planning and plotting and dreaming and writing will be worth it." I agree, Betty.

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  3. One of the reasons I write is to make a difference in others' lives. I like to show how Christians solve problems, because being a Christian doesn't mean we don't have them. Enjoyed your post!

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  4. Thank you so much, Patricia. You are so right--we certainly do have problems to overcome. Those make great stories. :)

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  5. Thank you Gail. When we write if it touches one life for God, we are truly blessed.

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