A person’s commitment or desire to write may originate from one of several different places. It may come from within, a personal desire to put words on paper. It may come from other people telling you that you are a good writer, or it may originate from a divine source-God. Even if they didn’t know it at the time, all of the writers of the New and Old Testament had the hand of God on their lives as they wrote. 2 Peter 1:21 (KJV)* “For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy” We now know, “All scripture is given by inspiration of God . . .” 2 Timothy 3:16
Although, we no longer have any writings that fit in the same category as the Scriptures. God still divinely calls people to write for His purposes. I personally have been a recipient of books that I know God had a hand in from the way God used the writings to speak to me. The most significant one was Rees Howell, Intercessor by Norman Grubb. This was the book I read in 1971 that propelled me to give my life unconditionally to God. It was a major turning point in my life.
I know God called me to write as well. At the time, I read a lot, I may have done some loose journaling and I had written a couple of little booklets a few years prior, but I wasn’t thinking about writing a book. But on December 15, 1989, at about 3 in the morning, I was lead to read Jeremiah, starting at chapter 29:11. I kept reading and when I got to Jeremiah 30:2, which says, “Thus speaketh the LORD God of Israel, saying, Write thee all the words that I have spoken unto thee in a book.”, I knew then that God had called me to write.
When I contemplated the phrase, “the things I have spoken unto you”, I immediately thought of a little speaking that I had done. I had spoken on prayer a few times, using 2 Chronicles 7:14. I had also been invited to speak at a family reunion in which I had done a talk on the roots of African Americans. Fortunately, these talks had been recorded. I had the tapes transcribed and they became the bases for Chosen Vessels: Women of color, keys to change.
Since that time I have written three other books and I also revised the first book ten years after its initial release. I know I will write at least one more book. I think five is the minimum number of books I will write. Writing has become a ministry and speaking has become a part of the ministry. Since I began my writing career, there have been a few things about writing that I have learned along the way:
● Know what it is that makes you certain God has called you.
● It’s a lot of work. Be prepared for long days and nights and lonely times.
● Just because God called you to write does not mean everything you put on paper is God given.
● Do what God called you to do, let others use their gifts to help you.
● You’ll need many others to help you on the way, including feedback on what you have written.
● Put on thick skin when you show it to others and make improvement as needed.
● Don’t listen to naysayers!
● If God has called you to it, nothing else matters, but to do it.
● Don’t focus on how many may buy or read your book. Write for the One who called you to write.
● Have it edited by two different editors, one who excels in content (organization, clarity, flow) and the other one who excels in grammar, punctuation issues.
*Unless otherwise specified, all scriptures are taken from the King James Version (KJV) of the Bible.