by Cheryl Wyatt
I recently saw the film Son of God, produced by Mark Burnett and Roma Downey. One scene spoke to me with regard to praying for readers.
I once asked God the best way to reach readers. His encouragement was, “just love them.” One way to do that is pray for them. In the film, a scene depicts the Mark 2:1-12 story where Jesus forgives and heals a paralytic after his determined friends overcame obstacles to get him to Jesus.
I’d recently read that Bible story and envisioned prayer to be like the arms of those friends. The man wasn’t able to walk Himself to his Healer/Savior. Thank goodness his friends cared enough to carry him. They weren’t discouraged when it became clear the path wasn’t easy.
Likewise, through prayer, we “bring our readers to Jesus.” Our prayers can carry them through whatever rickety roof struggle it takes to get them to the source of hope: Jesus, the most compassionate being in creation. I envision them resting him at Jesus’ feet. Feet that were, soon after that miracle, pierced for all humanity. The friends proceeded with no guarantee their friend would walk out of that place. But guess what? He did. Jesus went to the brutality of the cross with no guarantee a single one of us would ever love or follow Him back. I pray our books help people want to.
I believe Jesus uses our words if we commit our works to Him.
I’ll be honest. Despite writing for 15 years, my skin has not thickened. To the contrary, it feels more fragile. If I didn’t know 100% that God reaches through the pages of my meager words and stretches himself between the lines to give people a hug, hope or the gift of laughter, I would not subject myself to the pain that the path to publication can sometimes bring. Perhaps I’m weaker than the rest, but I believe in being honest. So here you have it.
Aspiring authors, I encourage you to begin praying for your readers now. Established authors, I hope you pray regularly for your readers. Their time is as valuable as yours. It takes time to read books, post reviews, and tell friends about you. You may never know the eternal impact of your words and prayers until Heaven, but rest assured if you write as worship, He will honor it. Jesus used parables. Fiction is.
There’s no higher call in life than to worship God and point people to Jesus. I pray your typed words are the arrow and your whispered ones the hands that carry your readers to Jesus in whatever form they need him. The season in which your books meet them will be no accident. Jesus: Friend. Healer. Comforter. Truth. Savior. Deliverer. Encourager. Giver of Life. Provider. The list goes on.
Thank you for reading this. May our words reflect with honor and accuracy the glory of The Risen Lord.
Cheryl Wyatt writes Romance with Virtue. Her books have earned multiple RT Top Picks, #1 and #4 on Harlequin’s Top-10-Most-Blogged-About-Books, a Reviewers Choice Award and a Gayle Wilson Award of Excellence final. Cheryl LOVES readers! You can connect with her at: https://www.facebook.com/CherylWyattAuthor Her most recent release is: The Nurse’s Secret Suitor (Love Inspired).