When God Prompts You to Write – Write

I can’t tell you how many times the enemy has planted seeds of doubt regarding my calling as a writer. I’ve also talked with so many writers who feel the same way.

I’m writing this first of all to tell you – do not listen to the enemy. He lies!

Secondly, if God has called you to write (you wouldn’t be reading this if He didn’t), step into your calling, knowing God has an amazing purpose in everything He gives you to write.

Let me share an example. I am currently reading the second novel in a Christian series. The reviews of this novel have been harsh.

While I understood why those readers were disappointed (there are so many typos and cliches that suggest another round of edits and proofreading were needed), I felt like I wanted to continue reading the series, despite those distractions.

Why? Mainly because I fell in love with the characters. I wanted to continue to see how their fictional lives grew and transformed.

So here I am, halfway through the second novel. The main character has been facing a lot of adversity. I haven’t missed the irony that her situation is painfully similar to mine.

Maybe I have sensed a kindred spirit in the author’s description of this character. And maybe I am persevering to see what God will do in her circumstances, to add to my own hope for my struggles.

And there, right smack in the middle of the book, a woman asks the main character if she can pray for her. And the author writes the prayer. (I noticed many Kindle readers highlighted that prayer.)

As I read the words of the prayer, they spoke exactly to my situation. By the end of the prayer, the main character and I were both in tears. And I absolutely received that prayer in my heart, just as if I had been standing in the room with that character and hearing those words prayed over me.

God gave the author the words of that prayer – for me and obviously (by the number of highlights) so many others like me. The author was faithful to write and publish those words – even at the cost of getting harsh reviews. Today, that prayer has made an impact in my life. I am so grateful the author was obedient in her calling.

If you are called to write, I can assure you God has a purpose in everything He will give you to write. Sometimes the purpose will be for you, your growth, and your relationship with Him. At other times, the purpose will be for a reader like me, to give God another way of speaking into that reader’s life at a crucial moment.

He knows what the purpose is. He just asks that you write. Don’t let the enemy or your own self-doubts stand in the way. When God prompts you to write – write.

 

 

Write a Prayer

Today’s post is a lesson from my free online intro course for Christian writers: Begin Your Christian Writing Adventure!

Dear Lord, thank You for helping us to grow as writers. We ask that You will guide us, so that Your heart will shine through each word we write. In Jesus’ name. Amen

In the last lesson, we talked about how your writing starts from your relationship with God. Your writing also begins with prayer. Prayer is simply conversation with God – and that’s exactly what you did in the last lesson. Your letter to God was a prayer.

All of your writing should be bathed in prayer. Pray before you write. Write from a prayerful spirit. Take breaks during your writing time to pray. Talk to God as you write. Ask Him any questions you have, or share your concerns with Him. Don’t wait – stop and talk with Him as concerns come up. Listen for His wisdom. He knows exactly how to help you. Then close each writing session with prayer.

As you pray through your writing, not only will this help you as a writer (and as a person). Your prayerful writing will also invite the Holy Spirit to move through your words. God will touch readers in ways you can’t begin to expect. Think about the last time God affected you through a piece of writing. He will do the same for others through the words He inspires in you.

I’ve had readers share with me that a certain word or phrase spoke directly to their heart. Some of these were phrases I didn’t even remember writing. But God knew what they needed to hear. He helped me write the words, crafted for people I didn’t even know. He reached through those words to touch their hearts in unique ways that I could never have done. The key was prayer.

In addition to writing with a prayerful heart, you can also allow God to use the writing gift He has given you to write prayers for people. It may be an email to someone in need; a prayer offered on a blog or in a magazine for a specific type of situation; or a collection of prayers in a book.

Your church might enjoy having prayers written on the website or social media pages, in the newsletter, or in the Sunday bulletin. I used to lead a writing ministry at a church. Together, we created responsive prayers for different occasions. As a prayer leader, I was also asked to write sample prayers for healing. And I enjoyed writing short prayers for different seasons in the church newsletter and daily news emails.

In whatever ways God leads you, you can write prayers that will help people.

Today is your chance to get started with prayer writing. Here is today’s writing exercise:

Write a prayer.

It can be a prayer for someone you are praying for right now. Or a prayer for something you are going through. You might think of a situation and write a prayer for someone in that situation. It might be a prayer for a friend who is ill … for a child about to take a test at school … for a new believer to share thanks with Jesus. Ask God to lead you, and pray before you start to write.

Remember not to edit yourself – just write. Write from your heart, prayerfully.

When you finish, you may simply want to read your prayer out loud to God. If your prayer is for a particular person, you might want to email it or write it in a prayer card to mail to that person, if that seems appropriate and if the Lord leads. If you have a blog, and if your prayer is for a general or common situation (i.e., not for a particular person), you might want to share your prayer so other readers can pray that prayer too, for their own situations.

Or the prayer you write may just stay between you and God. There’s no pressure to share with others. Only if you want to.

P.S. After you finish writing your own prayer, turn to John 17:20-26 and be blessed by the prayer Jesus prayed for you when He walked on this earth.

If you would like more lessons like this one, my free, self-paced, online course Begin Your Christian Writing Adventure is waiting for you. The course includes feedback on your final course project. And the course is Free! Come on in.

Prayer Prompts for Christian Writers

As a Christian writer, I feel it’s important to publish prayers on the internet. The web is filled with so many discouraging and distressing words. Prayer is the antidote. When words of prayer fill the internet, not only do these words offer hope and encouragement. They also speak spiritual change over the online atmosphere.

As writers, we have an amazing opportunity to publish simple yet powerful prayers through our blogs, websites, online articles, and e-books. I encourage every Christian writer to write prayers that can be read by others who are searching online for help and hope.

If you put your prayers out there for people to read, God will guide people to those prayers. You never know whose life will be touched by a prayer you have written and published online. Your prayer might help someone who needs comfort or healing. It might encourage a parent about a child who is struggling – or vice versa. Someone might even encounter Christ for the first time in praying one of your prayers online.

 

Writing for Christmas Eve

Does your church have more than one service on Christmas Eve? Or special services leading up to Christmas?

Did you know sometimes it is a challenge for the pastor and church staff to come up with fresh ideas for the service, and especially for the bulletin? Let alone, the materials to advertise the service.

I remember sitting through many years of church staff meetings and a collective sigh would go around the room, as we tried to think up some new ideas at that very busy time of year.

That’s where you, the writer, come in.

Does your pastor or church staff know you love to write? If not, this might be a great time to let them know. And maybe ask if there is anything you can write for the Christmas season that would help them.

You might be surprised at the suggestions they might give you!

If you want to start with one item, you can offer to write a Christmas prayer. I can tell you that every year, we could have used your prayer in the bulletin for our 11 pm Christmas Eve service. Or placed your prayer on the tables of our Christmas Day community lunch. Or in the church newsletter during the week leading up to Christmas. Or in the last Merry Christmas message of our “daily news” email letter. Not to mention on the church website or Facebook page.

Churches need words to share with people. You create words. Ask how you can help your church as a writer this Christmas season.

And don’t stop with Christmas. If you love writing, your church would love to know – all year round. God bless you.

Use Your Writing Gift for Prayer Cards

Prayer cards are a wonderful way to use your writing gift.

While prayer doesn’t always require words – some of the most powerful times of prayer are done in silence – we use words in prayer for several reasons. One is to express what’s in our hearts for confession, repentance, forgiveness. Another is to get the words of scripture into our hearts. And one of the most important reasons we use words in prayer is for the sake of the person receiving the prayer.

When you are praying with someone, your words offer a way to convey God’s comfort, hope, forgiveness, and assurance. Your words can help the person receive God’s love into their hearts. This can happen through spoken prayer but also through written prayer and blessings.

Does your church send prayer cards to people? If not, this might be a great time to ask. If they already do this, consider volunteering your writing skills. If this isn’t something your church does yet, maybe they would consider it – especially if they know they have a writer willing to volunteer.

Outside of your own church, what kind of ministries exist in your town? Is there a jail ministry, or a ministry to seniors, or a ministry to homeless kids, or a recovery ministry? Perhaps they can use prayer cards as well.

You can also write prayer cards on your own to send to people you know who need a word of comfort and encouragement.

If you are not sure how to write a prayer, remember that the most helpful words are often the simplest:

1. God loves you so much.
2. I pray that you will feel God’s [comfort, presence, hope, encouragement, peace … choose the right word for the situation].
3. I am praying for you. [We are praying for you … if this comes from the church.]
4. God bless you.
5. Then write a scripture verse as a closing prayer.

I hope you will enjoy the blessing of writing prayer cards. I know your words will really bless others.

The Blessing of Prayer Writing

One of the most powerful ways to grow as a Christian writer is to write prayers.

How amazing it would be to see the internet covered with prayers. How powerful too – prayers written on the internet literally speak out over the airwaves, affecting the atmosphere all around us.

Prayers are helpful to people who are struggling. If you write prayers on your blog, you have no idea how those might affect someone’s life.

People appreciate finding prayers on different topics. Moms are always looking for prayers to pray on days when their children have tests at school. That’s just one example of a prayer you can write and share!

Christian magazines are often looking for prayers. Find a writer’s market guide to Christian publishing and visit magazine websites to learn who is looking to publish prayers.

Closer to home, you can also help your church or people in your community by writing prayer cards.

If you aren’t sure how to write a prayer, remember that prayer is simply talking to God. Talk to Him, write your words, and share your prayer. Others will thank you and be blessed.

To help you get started, I’ve created 156 prayer writing prompts, which you are welcome to download here:

156 Prayer Writing Prompts – Janet Eriksson

Above all, let the Holy Spirit guide you as you write each prayer. Your prayers will really bless people.