As authors, we write to change readers. Every book you read changes you, whether for good or bad. Every story opens your mind to some new thought, perspective, idea, or understanding.
I recently read a biography of English missionary Evelyn Brand. I will never think of India the same way again, after hearing of the great poverty and wretchedness up in the hills.
Some weeks ago, I read a small story of a homeless man in Paris, France, and it showed me how a hardened heart can be won by a child’s innocent trust.
I have three questions for you today—feel free to answer in the comments or just in your mind.
- What book did you read most recently?
- How did it affect you?
- Did it pass the ToTT Test?
Now you’re probably scratching your head and thinking, I have no idea what that is. ToTT stands for Think on These Things. The things? Whatsoever is …
- of good report
Did your most recent read pass? There are some things that enter our minds ‘without permission’, like when you enter a store playing ungodly music or overhear a conversation filled with bad language.
But reader, reading is a choice. You get to choose which books fill your mind, and it is a great responsibility. God has made clear what we are to think about.
Now to move into the world of writers …
We write to change readers, absolutely. But there is someone who will change far more from your book or story or poem than anyone who picks it up off the shelf and reads it.
That someone is you.
As I worked on Voice of the Ashes over the course of seven years, I researched, wrote, rewrote, laughed, cried, prayed, studied God’s Word, and fought to overcome my fear of readers.
And God changed me through it all. I learned things from my characters as I wrote about them and the struggles they experienced. I learned what it meant to wait on God for answers to my questions. I learned what it meant to be truly patient—though there’s a lot of growth still needed there!
Fellow writers, write to change the world for God’s glory. But bear in mind …
You will change too.