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Can Readers See Your Heart?

By Lisa Godfrees

Heart Attack and heart beats cardiogram
As writers, it’s safe to say that we all have a heart for a good story. Otherwise, why do we write? And why would writers be some of the most avid readers?

As Christian authors, what we give our readers has to be more than a great story. People read Christian fiction because of the hope it offers. And we choose to write it because we want to bring glory to our Creator. As stewards of His gift to us-our ability to communicate via words on the page, to create compelling characters, to transport our readers into worlds of our making-it is both our privilege and our responsibility to be intentional in sharing our hearts.

The question I have for you today, and the challenge, is-how does your heart come through in your writing?

Instead, you must worship Christ as Lord of your life. And if someone asks about your hope as a believer, always be ready to explain it.
~1 Peter 3:14-16

It doesn’t matter if you’re writing to unbelievers, believers, seekers, or backsliders (thank you, Terry Burns & Linda Yezak for the terminology). It doesn’t matter if your fiction is overtly Christian or mainstream. What matters is how your love for God comes through in your writing.
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And this applies to all your words, not just your fiction. It applies to the words you speak when you meet people during the day-at the grocery store, at your child’s school, at your spouse’s work, at the post office-and the words you share on social media. Does God ooze out of you when you speak, when you post a status update on Facebook, when you tweet, when you blog? Do all your words seek to glorify Him?

If not, then it’s not just a matter of trying to change our actions or control our speech; it’s a matter of being. Take some time to focus on God’s Word today. Our hearts can’t reflect His if we aren’t spending time with Him.

A good person produces good things from the treasury of a good heart, and an evil person produces evil things from the treasury of an evil heart. What you say flows from what is in your heart.
~Luke 6:45

Lisa Godfrees FebLisa Godfrees is a former forensic scientist. Tired of technical writing, she hung up her lab coat to pen speculative fiction while taking classes at Dallas Theological Seminary. She is the author of several short stories and her first manuscript was a 2013 finalist in the Genesis Contest.

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3 Responses to Can Readers See Your Heart?

  1. Ted Sugges says:

    Our stories start with an idea, a thought that begins in our passion, which, in turn, springs from our hearts, not only before we start writing, but at the start of each day when we pray for guidance. Then the writing begins- the outpouring of our hearts and minds in delving into an imaginary world of our own making, in a first draft. We pour everything we envision -the characters, their personalities, motivation, the setting, the scenes that we’ll blend together into a plot that moves along to a climax and conclusion that will move our audience closer to our God. Then the edits begin, and just like we do in our daily lives, we correct our mistakes, and we edit our edits. And we pray. And because the story, like us, is imperfect, we pray and we edit some more. Finally, after taking all of the necessary steps and praying each time along the way, we come to the last edit. Finally, our story, our baby is ready to see the light of day. We recognize the finished work for what it is. We’ll get the credit for writing it, but we know it’s not totally ours. The inspiration that guided the words came from the source of all that is good in our lives. Because the result of all our work is a combination of our gift to Him and His to us, I do believe our audience sees beyond the words, and recognizes, it’s a three way act of love – audience, writer and God.

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