I know that people like to receive cards and I usually have a block as to what to say. This book has helped. I wished there were more on birthdays and get well cards but able to take some phrases from more than one entry to get what I want and it also prompts other ideas.
Personal communication is perhaps one of the areas most greatly affected by technology over the last 10 years. Emails, facebook, twitter, texts, instagrams, and skype have all but replaced traditional phone calls, letter writing, and sadly, too often, face to face communication. As with all cultural changes, tradition tries hard to hold on, and there are some rough spots as one way of doing things is replaced by another.
We are in that limbo time in determining the appropriateness of sending condolences, congratulations, announcements and such. Many still believe that handwritten messages supersede any electronic format, but sadly too many of us really don't know how to write a simple personal note, especially if we need to say something significant. Liz Duckworth has tackled that problem with her new book A Perfect Word for Every Occasion. She covers writing words of grieving (always a hard one for me), words of gratitude, words for the sick and suffering, words for birthdays, weddings, anniversaries, and other celebrations, and more. Each chapter gives starting points for writing your own thoughts, then also suggests some famous quotations and Bible verses. She rounds out chapters identifying some wrong turns we can make which she calls Aunt Me-Me's mistakes.
I like Duckworth's opinion that we should be attempting to convey "grace-filled" words. And I do cherish hand written notes. I've gotten a few from co-workers and students over the years. Our daughter and her husband-to-be wrote us a letter from an engagement retreat they attended, and I still tear up reading it after 10 years. And those precious notes from the grandchildren surpass everything, except perhaps the love letters I got from my husband as we dated. Sadly, I fear too many people never receive such correspondence or send it. Like Duckworth, I am not sure a twenty word message on an electronic wall will ever replace the effort and meaning behind a hand written note, but I believe it is becoming fully accepted.
As a former English teacher, I am saddened knowing people are uncomfortable writing and sending their thoughts, but I fully understand the struggles we can all have in deciding what is the right thing to say, especially to someone who is grieving or struggling. A Perfect Word for Every Occasion is a good resource and will help writers focus their thoughts. I received a copy from Bethany House for review purposes. Opinions are my own.
Mark Twain once intoned that "the difference between the right word and the almost right word is the difference between lightning and a lightning bug." Bible teachers and preachers also know the importance and power of words. Indeed it is our stock-in-trade. But for some it is easier to turn a phrase in a sermon than it is to produce a timely word in a more personal setting. For those who struggle to find the perfect word on such occasions, Liz Duckworth has provided some help. Her brief, easy-to-read book A Perfect Word for Every Occasion supplies practical suggestions for finding just the right word for most commonly occurring occasions. The occasions addressed in this work include grief, gratitude, sickness, suffering, birthdays, weddings, engagements, encouragements related to personal setbacks, celebrations, events, activities, words of truth and love (i.e., apologies, confrontations, etc.), and even a section devoted to using the right words in cyberspace. Each section typically includes guidelines for finding the right words, prompts to help you begin, words to make your own, a guide of what not to say, and quotes worth sharing. In general the author does a good job helping one find "apples of silver" (Prov 25:11). Not all the suggestions here are original, but even the familiar expressions seem to be appropriately chosen. At the end of the day, one has to own their own words for them to be authentic, but the author has given tangible assistance to those who are looking for the perfect word, or at least a better word, for those day-to-day opportunities to minister through one's words.
A free review copy of this book was provided by Bethany House Publishers.
A fun helper to have int hand when writing cards and letters :)
My birthday was just a little while ago and I found this book very helpful in writing Thank You cards. There were many great suggestions and great thoughts, I liked how I was able to sort of mix and match phrases and sentiments into the perfect little note.
I also really liked the suggestions for Bible verses for a multitude of different occassions from graduations to births. One of the chapter that I found to be intriguing, though I haven't tried it out and hope I don't have to anytime soon, is the section on how to write a sympathy card, which I have always found the most challenging of all things to write, and I thought it had many helpful ideas and suggestions.
Overall, a helpful guide that was really handy as I was writing Thank You cards this last birthday. :)
I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. Thanks!