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Eva Marie EversonEva Marie Everson is an author, speaker, teacher, wife and mother. She has a passion for studying and teaching the Old Testament and for anything that draws people into a deeper relationship with God.

Favorite Verse: John 6:67-69 “You do not want to leave too, do you?" Jesus asked the Twelve. Simon Peter answered him,"Lord to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. We believe and know that you are the Holy One of God.”


 

 WHY WE DO IT: by Eva Marie Everson


 
Why do we do it?

It's five-thirty in the morning. This writer has just downed another cup of coffee--piping hot and flavored with French vanilla creamer--thankful for the little bit of inspirational buzz it brings. Staring at the words on my computer's monitor--Arial 12, of course--I take a deep breath, narrow my eyes, exhale and begin the age-old dance of writers throughout history. Quill to parchment, pen to paper, fingertips to keyboard.

Why do we do it?

This isn't the first time my body has warmed the seat under me so early in the morning. And, most likely, it won't be the last. A character that demands to be reckoned with has awakened me. Or, a sentence didn't sit quite right. Or, a scene that was so powerful, I just have to read it one more time...to allow it to sweep me away to another place, another world, just for the sheer pleasure of going there. Or, a scripture has struck my heart so powerfully; I can't sleep until I pour my feelings out for all the world to read.

Why do we do it?

Because we have heard...we have seen....we have touched the Word of life.

 

In his first letter written to the church's earliest believers, the apostle John wrote:

 

That which was from the beginning, which we have heard,
which we have seen with our eyes,
which we have looked at and our hands have touched--this we
proclaim concerning the Word of life. (1 John 1: 1b NIV)

Do you remember when you first heard the Gospel? Perhaps you sat under the tutelage of a favorite Sunday school teacher? Or gathered with your family for evening devotions? Perhaps it was at a youth rally or one of Dr. Billy Graham's crusades. Some of us heard as children and some as adults; no matter how or when, it continues to be the sweetest story we've ever heard.

 

My foster daughter (a young woman we adopted into our family when she was in her early twenties) shared her testimony with me--a story that moved me to tears. When she was but a small child, she and her cousin played "church." In the middle of a summer's afternoon, as her cousin "preached" to her from the Bible, he asked, "Do you want to accept Jesus as your Lord and Savior?" She said she did. "Then kneel," he instructed. She knelt. She knelt and asked Jesus into her young heart.

In spite of what lay ahead for her in life (and it was difficult, at best), that one moment of decision became a strong light that would serve as a guide to her. Even in one of her darkest hours, this talented young woman penned:

Lord,
Teach my soul to dance
Move me with the power of the Holy Spirit
Cleanse my heart
And carry me away in Your direction
To the beat of Your precious instruments.
Amaze me with the anointing of
Your glorious presence
And surround me with Your everlasting,
Indescribable peace...*

Can you imagine--let's say--what it might have been like to see the Red Sea part? The walls of Jericho crumble? A rock from a young boy's sling shot strike a giant's forehead and the giant perish? How about seeing a beautiful white dove fly out of heaven to land on a carpenter's shoulder? Water turning into wine? Dead children and adult men returning from the dead? Small portions of fish and bread feeding multitudes? How about watching your best friend die under Roman crucifixion, only to sit and dine with Him days later?

But are miracles only to be found between the leather covers of your favorite Bible? Or do miracles still occur today?

I recently heard one of the pilots who had been shot down over China in Spring 2001 report, "There were angels under our wings. That's the only explanation for how we were able to land safely." Our bookshelves are lined with titles telling of modern day miracles and unexplained circumstances. There are scads of Internet sites devoted to the same. Speakers build platforms on the topic of the miracles they've experienced. Ordinary people...writers...speakers...heroes...all relaying the same message: Miracles happen everyday.

As John wrote the words "which we have touched," I wonder if he was thinking of the evening he laid his head against the chest of the Messiah. What a moment it must have been--to have physically touched the Master, the Creator of mankind! Can't you just see Jesus standing in a green field with His disciples; someone tells a joke and they laugh so hard they have to hold onto one another to keep from falling to the ground. Can you push aside today's cares long enough to imagine what it might have been like to have been a child, caught up into His arms, cradled in His lap? Can you picture walking down the road with Him, singing songs of jubilation, and having Him reach for your hand in a heartwarming moment of friendship?

We can only imagine. We cannot physically touch Jesus, but He has touched us.

He touched me...
Oh, He touched me.
And oh, the joy that floods my soul...

You could not have lived in the past fifty years and not heard this song...or even sang this song. Bill Gaither, a man of extraordinary talent with whom our generation has been blessed, penned them. He had been touched, and he had to share this message the best way he knew how: by writing a song.

When John wrote his letter, he understood why lyricist would tell of the touch of Jesus. He didn't need an explanation as to why pilots would testify to miracles or teenage girls would express themselves poetically. And I believe he had clarity as to why authors would one day sit before their computer monitors at all hours of the day and night, sharing what has been placed on their hearts.

I know because John, himself, wrote:

We proclaim to you what we have seen and heard so that you may also have fellowship with us...we write this to make our joy complete. (1 John 1:4)

To make our joy complete. Joy. Joy, joy, joy! That which comes from God, only to be sent back to Him. We don't do it for our own selfish gains (Though sometimes we fear we may burst if we don't!), but to give joy to our Lord, from Whom comes all joy.

And that is why we do it.

*copyright Sarah R. Woodcum


 

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Web Resources for Writers

There are many web sites with great information for Christian writers. Below are some that you might find helpful.

 

  • American Christian Fiction Writers
  • Christian Writers Fellowship International

  • The Christian Writer's Manual of Style
  • Writer's Digest
  • Writer's Market
  • The Writer's Magazine
  • Christian Writer's Market Guide
  • ACW Press
  • Writer's Edge (Manuscript Service)

  • More Author Tips

     • Words of Advice: Chris Fabry

     • Writing Advice: Maureen Lang