Oh, How I Love What These Authors Told Me

 Oh, How I Love What These Authors Told Me

by Lucinda Secrest McDowell

bookstilllife I did not get much writing done. On my Writers Retreat. But that’s okay, because, after all, I was one of the directors of the whole event. And speaking faculty.

What I did do was to offer words that might encourage others to write. And it is my prayer that they did just that. Frederick Buechner once said, “The place God calls you to is the place where your deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet.” For me, that is through “Encouraging Words.”

Today I want to offer you some of the words that have most encouraged me — to keep writing…

quotecomput4erAnd the Lord said to me “Write My answer on a billboard, large and clear, so that anyone can read it at a glance and rush to tell others. But these things I plan won’t happen right away. Slowly, steadily, surely the time approaches when the vision will be fulfilled. If it seems slow, do not despair, for these things will come to pass. Just be patient! They will not be overdue a single day.” Habakkuk 2.2-3 TLB

necwrprofile“Your authenticity does not depend on proving to people or to God with pitches, paints or pen – that you really are quite a piece of work. Rather, I pray that you are discovering that your authenticity lies in who you are constantly becoming in Christ, and that you make art because you cannot keep yourself from the simple joy of shaping something as best you can and then pouring it over Jesus’ feet. The only reason for doing our very best, despite any cost, is the infinite worth of Jesus, for making art this way is where authenticity lies…The best artists begin by being influenced and end up influencing.”  – Michael Card in “Scribbling in the Sand”

quotesscrabblewriting“May God grant us courage to face the truth as we perceive it and to take whatever risks may be necessary to state it. We may be mistaken, but it is infinitely better to be mistaken than to bluff. We may be ignorant, but the admission of ignorance has sometimes cleared the way for the statement of truth. The reader recognizes common ground with the writer and is more likely to receive the message. None of us is big enough to contemplate, let alone to write, the whole truth! For God Himself is Truth. What we see of it or of Him at any given moment is what we are responsible to reproduce.”     – Elisabeth Elliot on Writing (1970s)

“You must once and for all give up being worried about successes and failures. Don’t let that concern you. It’s your duty to go on working steadily day by day, quite quietly, and to be prepared for mistakes, which are inevitable, and for failures.”   – Anton Chekov’s Letters

Senior lady writing“Here I am, an old woman already. I always thought I had a book in me. Every year I told myself ‘Next year you’ll write a book.’ The years came and went. It always seemed like next year I’d start on it, but I never did – and I’ve had a whole century. If you have a book inside you, sit down and get it written. It’s not a matter of having the time. If you want to do something badly enough, you do it.  Now my hands are twisted up with arthritis, and I can’t see beyond the end of my nose. See? I have time, but I can’t do it.”    – Matilda Johnson, age 101

“Every word You give me is a miracle word – how could I help but obey? Break open Your words, let the light shine out, let ordinary people see the meaning.” Psalm 119.129-130 MSG

quotecrumpledpaper“You are going to have to give and give and give or there’s no reason for you to be writing. You have to give from the deepest part of yourself, and you are going to have to go on giving, and the giving is going to have to be its own reward. There is no cosmic importance to your getting something published, but there is in learning to be a giver.”   – Anne Lamott in “Bird by Bird”

“If you do what you’ve always done, you’ll have what you’ve always had. But if you want what you’ve never had, you must do what you’ve never done. In other words, we must be willing to make the changes necessary to reach our designated goals, even if it moves us out of our comfort zones and launches us into uncharted territory.”   – unknown

quotesonceupon“Be strong and courageous and get to work! Don’t be frightened by the size of the task, for the Lord my God is with you – He will not forsake you. He will see to it that everything is finished correctly.” I Chronicles 28.20 TLB

“I’d delight if none of my words fell to the ground – if none were useless, excessive, dispensable, easily dismissed… But that’s God’s business. He might use the means of cyber technology, savvy marketing, good publicity. But either God, God alone, keeps our words from falling and scatters them wide, or else there is nothing in them worth keeping and scattering in the first place. Our concern, our responsibility, is simply to hear and heed God. It is always and everywhere to say, Speak, Lord, for Your servant is listening.”   – Mark Buchanan in “The Rest of God”

So… even though I’m crazy busy this week and off to another adventure in another state, I heard and heeded God. I wrote this down. For you. Today.

under the mercy, Cindy

man writing a contract“When the question comes, ‘Are you still writing?’ I hope your answer will always be, ‘Of course I am writing. I am a writer.’  Tomorrow the sun will rise, God willing, and it will be time again for us to go to our tables. It will be time to pick up the pen or turn on the machine… There are stories that must be told and must be heard, stories waiting on you and me to do the telling. Tomorrow we will write, write and not waste time. We will make dark marks on the page, the gift to which we have been given, the gift that has been given to us. Tomorrow we will go dancing again. Dancing on the head of a pen.” – Robert Benson in “Dancing on the Head of a Pen”

necwr16collageYou might enjoy last week’s blog “The Day I Decided to Keep Writing”

 ©2014 Lucinda Secrest McDowell  EncouragingWords.net

 NOTE: Did you enjoy this blog? If so, would you consider entering your email in the above right form and subscribing to it by email? I assure you I won’t overload your in-box, but would love to send you these ‘encouraging words’ each Wednesday. Thanks!

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3 Responses to Oh, How I Love What These Authors Told Me

  1. Cherrilynn says:

    Thank you Cindy, You gave me even more inspiration to finish the books and continue to write no matter what. Have a blessed week. Keep shining for Jesus!.

  2. Hi Cindy…Thank you for this page and blog…I am glad you are posting to Facebook articles, it reminds me to come to this beautiful page…I have been trying to start writing and keep fearing failure or even where I am going with it. Tommy Jr., and English High School teacher in Bloomfield encourages me to just start writing and he will edit and help…this is yet another push for to move forward with a dream of mine with so much to tell…Thank you…I am so Amazed by your Grace and beauty…You are a work God had done of which He is well pleased…I can’t wait to see what you are up to next…I loved your book Live These Words and have folded back pages to say a different one of the prayers each morning in my Devotion time…I am striving to be on this journey we are on just not sure what that looks like… God Bless you my far away friend…you continue to inspire me… Love your sister in Christ, Peggy Poland

  3. Jane Rattray says:

    Thank you, Cindy, for your faithfulness to us, your readers in the midst of your full life and for these words to spur us on to action. I love them! I want to print the out and wallpaper them all around my writing desk!

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