The Writer’s Heart: Words For the Heart

The Writer’s Heart: Wordsblog ten comthL1JRHTI7

“And the LORD said unto Moses,

Write thou these words:

for after the tenor of these words

I have made a covenant with thee and with Israel.”

Exodus 34:27, KJV

What do you do when you are at a loss for the right word/s?  Pick up a thesaurus? A dictionary? Ask a collegue? Pray? All of the aforementioned? It’s a problem writer’s face and must conquer to reach publication.

Moses didn’t have that problem. He had the best writing coach a person could have—the Living Word. The author of words told Moses exactly what to write. Since Moses lacked pen and paper, a typewriter, or computer, he wrote the Lord’s words of the covenant on stone. By the way, it took him forty days and nights, not stopping to eat or drink, to complete the task. That’s dedication.

Personally, I have trouble giving four uninterrupted hours to writing, and I have paper, pen, and a computer at my disposal. 

What Moses wrote, the Lord had first written on stone tablets. Moses destroyed the first tablets when he came down the mountain and saw the sin of the people. The second tablets have been lost to us. What the Lord directed Moses and thirty-nine others to write on papyrus, eventually was transcribed onto paper. Papyrus and paper are easily destroyed and decay.

Today, we use pens, paper, typewriters, and computers to write our words. These we have at our disposal—there is no chipping away at stone. But what’s written on these can soon be lost, accidentally deleted, or destroyed with a toss to the wastebasket or the stroke of a key.

We write in hope to encourage, entertain, and edify the lives of our readers. Even when we’ve prayed and used the tools available is there a guarantee our words will accomplish the goal? Only as those words enter the heart of the readers.

The Lord tells us his written words provided external direction. Some received the instruction but many more did not. The word needed to enter the heart. What’s written on the heart is eternal—never to be destroyed.

“But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel;

After those days, saith the LORD,

I will put my law in their inward parts,

and write it in their hearts,

and will be their God, and they shall be my people.”

Jeremiah 31:33, KJV

If the Lord is not a part of our writing team,

we cannot hope to reach the heart of the readers. That’s his work.

With God as our coach through his written word

and the Holy Spirit in us,

the Christian writer’s work reflects the heart of God.

From God’s heart he writes his message in our heart. From our heart, as we write, the message passes on to the hearts the Lord has prepared to receive it.

Our words will never make it into the Bible, but the Lord will use our work to put the Bible into the hearts of our readers. He promises—

“Therefore, my beloved brethren,

be ye stedfast, unmoveable,

always abounding in the work of the Lord,

forasmuch as ye know

that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.”

1 Corinthians 15:58, KJV

Our part in this partnership with the Lord:

  • Pray.
  • Choose words carefully.
  • Use the tools we have available.
  • Persevere,
  • and write as if writing for the Lord.
  • Our labor will not be in vain.

Our words will bring forth fruit/results that bring glory to the Father—the work will not be in vain—and we don’t have to climb a mountain to talk with the Lord.


With The Whole Heart

The Whole Hearted Life

“Give me understanding, and I shall keep thy law; yea,

I shall observe it with my whole heart.”

Psalm 119:34, KJV

The law kept with the whole heart not only obeys it, but does so, believing the worth of the law.

  • The whole heart genuinely trusts the one making the law.
  • A heart wholly devoted to the Lord rests in peace.
  • Anything less than the whole results in uncertainty and eventually falters.

“And if a house be divided against itself,

that house cannot stand”—

nor can a heart.

(Scripture from Mark 3:25, KJV; The last four words are my thought.)

A divided heart is motivated by half an effort, half a conviction, and half the passion. It  ends in an empty result.

  • A work done half-heartedly … Is a work not done.
  • A word spoken half-heartedly … Should remain unspoken.
  • A half-hearted love … is no love at all.

The Lord commands and deserves our whole hearted service.

“Now therefore fear the LORD,

and serve him in sincerity and in truth:

and put away the gods which your fathers

served on the other side of the flood, and in Egypt;

and serve ye the LORD.

And if it seem evil unto you to serve the LORD,

choose you this day whom ye will serve,

whether the gods which your fathers served  …

but as for me and my house,

we will serve the LORD.”

Joshua 24:14, 15, KJV

The whole heart serves the Lord—

  • in sincerity and in truth;
  • and the Lord alone, no others.
  • He fills the heart with all that fills his heart;
  • with a committed choice.

When Joshua presented Israel with the two choices, the people vowed to serve the Lord and him alone. But when they watched their neighbors, their hearts became divided. They spoke before searching their hearts. They spoke out of emotion not a heart wholly given to the Lord. Joshua told them as much. (See Joshua 24:14-28)

The whole hearted servant of the Lord speaks from the heart not just the lips.

“Be not rash with thy mouth,

and let not thine heart be hasty to utter any thing before God:

for God is in heaven, and thou upon earth:

therefore let thy words be few…

Better is it that thou shouldest not vow,

than that thou shouldest vow and not pay …




Ecclesiastes 5:2,5;Matthew 15:8, KJV

The Lord does not accept a half-hearted work, a half-hearted commitment, nor a half-hearted love. We are:

  • to offer our— “bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.” Romans 12:1b, KJV

Salvation, justification, sanctification, glorification is a whole hearted work of the living Word of God born our of his whole hearted love for us.

“We love him, because he first loved us.”

1 John 4:19, KJV

It’s time to praise the Lord with our sacrifice of praise offered from a heart wholly devoted to him in love.

“I will praise thee, O LORD,

with my whole heart;

I will shew forth all thy marvellous works.

I will be glad and rejoice in thee:

I will sing praise to thy name, O thou most High.”

Psalm 9: 1-2, KJV

 There really is no half a heart. Let’s make our choice—all or nothing. Which will it be?

The Writer’s Heart: Words

The Writer’s Heart: Words

“Oh that my words were now written!

Oh that they were printed in a book!”

Job 19:23, KJV

Is this not the dream, the driving desire of every writer? With the publication of The Nazarene’s Price, my desire became a reality, as it does with every author who holds that first copy in his/her hands.

Within the cover of our work, whether fiction or nonfiction, power to change the world resides by reaching out to the one the words capture. We’ve heard it said,

“The pen is mightier than the sword.”*

Long before this famous quote, the Lord inspired his writers to pen the power of our words.

“The lips of the righteous feed many … 

A wholesome tongue is a tree of life …

Pleasant words are as an honeycomb, sweet to the soul, and health to the bones …

Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof.”**

The author’s tongue finds its expression through the written word. We hold a great responsibility in handling our words carefully.

“A good man out of the good treasure of the heart

bringeth forth good things:

and an evil man out of the evil treasure

bringeth forth evil things.

But I say unto you,

that every idle word that men shall speak,

they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment.”

Matthew 12:35,36, KJV

Daunting isn’t it? But the workshops and speakers we listen to at conferences teach us the same concept—except for the judgment of God part. We do learn our words are judged by the publishers and editors as they remind us to make every word count. Each word drives our purpose, our message. Done well the words have the power to change one life at a time through encouragement, hope, feeling as if the reader is not alone, someone understands.

When one is touched by the author’s writing, the writer and the reader become partners in sharing words powerful enough to affect change.

My novel, The Nazarene’s Price, has been out for two months now. Many came to celebrate with me at the book signing. A few have left public reviews on Amazon and Goodreads, a few have been left in comments on my website, but just as important are those who have called to say, “I identified with Matthias and his doubts because of the places I have been,” and “Your book made me feel I was there with those I’ve only ready about before,” or “I’m passing this one on to _________.”

My readers encourage me, and I want to thank them for expressing how my words touched them.

I do remind readers, not only of my work but any author’s work, of the importance of reaching out to others by leaving reviews on Amazon, Goodreads, Bookbub, Barnes and Noble, or other sites. Your words there or by word of mouth serve as a means to others to read books that may speak to their hearts. In this way, the author and the reader share in—

a word well spoken, and seeing another’s life changed.

What book has spoken to your heart?

*Edward Bulwer Lytton penned the quote after Richelieu spoke them to King Louis XIII. Source, BBC News.

**Proverbs 10:2a;15:4a; 16:24; 18:21,KJV

For the Writer’s Heart: Lasting Words

Lasting Words:

macbook pro on brown wooden table
Photo by Andrew Neel on

According to statistics a person retains approximately ten percent of what is heard, twenty percent of what is read, and eighty percent of what is seen. If these numbers are correct, by my calculation, a prolific writer enables a person to preserve one hundred percent of what is read as the author shows the story with words.

In other words, the written word, written well, will be retained through revisiting the pages the words are written on. The Lord told Isaiah—

“Now go,

write it on a tablet before them,

And inscribe it on a scroll,

That it may serve in the time to come

As a witness forever.”

Isaiah 30:8

These words were first written close to three thousand years ago to serve as a witness forever. We know God’s word cannot be destroyed. I’m not saying what we write will last forever. But as we write, we should consider how far reaching into the future our written words will travel, who they will touch, and how they will influence the readers. Our words, testifying of the truth, will plant and water lives for years to come. And God will use them to give increase to His kingdom.

If you have a calling to write—

“Now go, write it on a tablet before them …”

For Thought:  What author, living or dead, has influenced your life?  You could be that author now and for generations to come.

The Writer’s Heart: The Right Word

For the Writer’s Heart: The Right Word

white ceramic mug on white paper
Photo by cottonbro on

“The Preacher sought to find delightful words

and to write words of truth correctly.

The words of wise men are like goads,

and masters of these collections

are like well-driven nails;

they are given by one Shepherd.”

Ecclesiastes 12:10,11; NASB

What writer has not labored over the best word to clearly speak his/her message into the readers? We grab the thesaurus and think it through until the right word finds its place. We are in good company. For Solomon, the wisest man of earth, struggled with the same problem.

He sought for:

  • delightful words—words that would draw the readers into the message;
  • words of truth correctly—words that did more than parrot a truth but conveyed the meaning of truth;
  • words that are like goads—encouraging the reader to take a positive action;
  • words that are like well-driven nails—words that are exactly what the reader needed for an exact time.

Solomon encourages writers to become masters of our words. Don’t settle but seek the right words. And he finishes by telling us where to find the right words—they are given by one Shepherd.

“For it is not you who speak,

but it is the Spirit of your Father who speaks in you.”

Matthew 10:20

Our Prayer; Heavenly Father, you have given us a book filled with your words. As we write, may we speak truth in boldness and love, planting and watering the words you give us. Prosper your word in the hearts of our readers.

What’s That?

1Corinthians 14: What’s That?

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“Pursue love,

yet desire earnestly spiritual gifts,

but especially that you may prophesy.” (14:1)

“I’m sorry. Could you repeat that?”

The telemarketer tried a second time. Yes, I know. I should have ended the call, but I felt bad for the soft-spoken, quick-speaking, foreign-accented woman. It wasn’t her fault I couldn’t make out her words.

“I’m sorry, but I still can’t understand what you are asking. Could you, please, slow down.”

She did. It didn’t work. Her accent was too heavy for me to make out. She tried a third time. I needed an interpreter.

The Corinthian church had a similar problem when speaking in tongues brought confusion into the congregation. If too many spoke at once or no interpreter was present, the words were meaningless to the hearers.

“For one who speaks in a tongue

does not speak to men, but to God:

for no one understands,

but in his spirit he speaks mysteries.

(Verse 2, NASB*)

Paul did not forbid speaking in an unknown tongue—one not known by the speaker. He laid out instructions on using the gift properly and in order in the church. As he, also did for using the gift of prophesy in the church.

“Therefore, my brethren,

desire earnestly to prophesy,

and do not forbid to speak in tongues.

But let all things be done

properly and in an orderly manner.”

(Verses 39,40)

Paul begins this chapter saying prophesy is a gift to desire. In verse 3, he tells why.

“But the one who prophesies speaks to men

for edification

and exhortation

and consolation.”

Prophecy brings edification through speaking in the wisdom and knowledge of God by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit.

Prophecy brings understanding to the hearers. It is that “aha” moment when it all makes sense, and the hearer grows in the knowledge, wisdom, and spiritual understanding of God and his message. How many times have you read a passage or heard a message on a familiar passage and suddenly it takes on a living meaning in your heart. That is the spirit of prophecy that edifies or produces growth.

Prophecy, the spoken word in a language the hearer knows, exhorts or urges the hearer to pursue an action resulting in the hearer’s growth.

“Hello?” Another phone call.

“Little Johnny, came home from camp today, saying you told him he couldn’t go to heaven unless he was a Christian. Is that true?”

“Yes, I remember saying that to our group.”

“So, you don’t believe a Baptist can go to heaven?”

The light came on. I had used a term little Johnny misunderstood. I learned a valuable lesson. It’s important to speak in a language the audience understands. Johnny left that day discouraged through hearing a message he didn’t understand. As a teacher or speaker of the word the message should urge our hearers in growth.

Prophecy, speaking God’s message, brings consolation or comfort to those who suffer from grief and other trials of life. It encourages the hearers to persevere and strengthens their resolve to wait for the Lord to perform his good work in their lives.

When my dad died suddenly, the Holy Spirit spoke such a word to me. “I am with you. Your dad is with me. You are not that far apart—just out of sight.” I’ve used those same words several times to bring comfort to others.

To end, we go back to the beginning. Whether it’s prophecy, speaking in tongues or any other gift—

“Pursue love…” For without it, we are—“a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal.”(13:1)

For Thought: What spiritual gift/s has the Holy Spirit given you? How are you using them?

Scripture Reading for Today: 1 Corinthians 14:9-12: What are the spiritual gifts given for?

Our Prayer: Father, you have given us all we stand in need of to share your word with others. You have gifted each of us according to your purpose, for the building up of your church, and for your glory. Thank you for providing all we need to do the work of ministry you have called us to. May we be faithful stewards and speak your word with understanding, in truth, and in love.

*All scripture is quoted from the NASB.

Here Come the Judges, Part 3


th2 “He that hath knowledge spareth his words: and a man of understanding is of an excellent spirit. Even a fool, when he holdeth his peace, is counted wise: and he that shutteth his lips is esteemed a man of understanding.” Prov. 17:27,28.

Almost Nothing

Tola’s life is summed up in two verses of Judges 10:2-3. He arose, defended, dwelt, judged, died, and was buried. The story not told says,

“Who through faith subdued kingdoms, wrought righteousness, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions.” Heb.11:33.

A Few Words for Believers

“For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.” Eph. 2:10.

A Little More

 Jair, his name means, May Jehovah Shine Forth. He judged Israel twenty two years, “And he had thirty sons that rode on thirty ass colts, and they had thirty cities…” Judges 10:4.

“Praise ye the LORD. Blessed is the man that feareth the LORD,  that delighteth greatly in his commandments. His seed shall be mighty upon earth: the generation of the upright shall be blessed. Wealth and riches shall be in his house: and his righteousness endureth for ever.” Ps. 11:1-3.

More Words for Believers

“Wherefore Jesus also, that he might sanctify the people with his own blood, suffered without the gate. Let us go forth therefore unto him without the camp, bearing his reproach. For here have we no continuing city, but we seek one to come. By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name. But to do good and to communicate forget not: for with such sacrifices God is well pleased.” Heb. 13:12-16.

Yet a Little More

Jephthah, his name means, God Will Set Free. Not only did the Lord use him to set free Israel from her enemies, but also to set him free from his past. He was disinherited by his half-brothers and had to flee for his life, until Israel needed his help. He spoke with wisdom when the elders sought for his aid.

“And Jephthah said unto the elders of Gilead, If ye bring me home again to fight against the children of Ammon, and the LORD deliver them before me, shall I be your head?” Judges 11:9.

The elders agreed and he rose to lead them to victory when the Spirit of the LORD came upon him. But in rashness or lack of trust in the Lord, I don’t know, but he made a vow to the Lord. He was victorious but it cost him his daughter.

“Be not rash with thy mouth and let not thine heart be hasty to utter any thing before God: for God is in heaven and thou upon earth: therefore let thy words be few.” Ecc.5:2.

A Few More Words for Believers

“But the tongue can no man tame; it i.s an unruly evil, full of deadly poison. Therewith bless we God, even the Father; and therewith curse we men, which are made after the similitude of God.Out of the same mouth proceedeth blessing and cursing. My brethern, these things ought not so to be…James 3:8-10; If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God; if any man minister, let him do it as of the ability which God giveth; that God in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ: to whom be praise and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.”1Peter 4:11.

The Final Word

“O generation of vipers, how can ye, being evil, speak good things? for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh. A good man out of the good treasure of the heart bringeth forth good things: and an evil man out of the evil treasure bringeth forth evil things. But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment. For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned.” Matt. 12:34-37.

What do your words say about your heart?




What Would You Say?

“Only the LORD had a delight in thy fathers to love them, and he chose their seed after them, even you above all people, as it is this day.” Deut. 10:15.

Deuteronomy, a book of remembrance, review, and renewal, contains Moses’ farewell messages to the new generation literally sitting on the edge of the Promised Land. It is an end of wandering, and a beginning of entering the Lord’s abundance, a remembering the past so as not to repeat it and a hope for the future, a review of what the Lord required of them, and a renewal of a covenant broken by their parents. The time had Jordan

“And it came to pass in the fortieth year, in the eleventh month, on the first day of the month, that Moses spake unto the children of Israel, according unto all that the LORD had given him in commandment unto them…On this side Jordan, in the land of Moab, began Moses to declare this law, saying, Ye have dwelt long enough in this mount: Turn you…take your journey, and go…” Deut. 1:3,5-7a. Is it your turn, your time to quit wandering and start living? Our Father God shows you how and empowers you to do so. The decision is yours. It’s time to turn from the world, take your journey with Him and go forward.

Unlike Numbers, which spanned forty aimless years, Deuteronomy covers a period of approximately one month, similar to the time of Leviticus. The audience in Deuteronomy, the congregation of a new generation, differs from Leviticus’ priestly audience. Deuteronomy is for the congregation, us.

In Deuteronomy, Moses, the Lord’s called savior of Israel, the priestly intercessor for the wayward children, the leader of a new nation and the prophet of God to a new generation, finishes the work of the Lord. Now it’s time for him to go.

  • “Come now therefore, and I will send thee unto Pharaoh, that thou mayest bring forth my people the children of Israel out of Egypt,”(Ex. 3:11).
  • “Sanctify yourselves therefore, and be ye holy: for I am the LORD your God.”(Lev. 20:7).
  • “Pardon, I beseech thee, the iniquity of this people according unto the greatness of thy mercy, and as thou hast forgiven this people, from Egypt even until now.” (Num. 14:19).
  • “These be the words which Moses spake unto all Israel on this side Jordan in the wilderness…And it shall come to pass, when all these things are come upon thee, the blessing and the curse, which I have set before thee, and thou shalt call them to mind among all the nations, whither the LORD thy God hath driven thee…” (Deut. 1:1;30:1). “So Moses the servant of the LORD died there in the land of Moab, according to the word of the LORD…And the children of Israel wept for Moses…thirty days…” (Deut. 34:5,8).

 “And Moses verily was faithful in all his house, as a servant, for a testimony of those things which were to be spoken after;” Heb. 3:5. When do you find it hardest to be faithful? Will you hear the words, “…Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.”  Matt. 25:21.

For You:

  • What would your last words be to the generation following you?
  • Moses’ epitaph reads faithful. What do you want your epitaph to read?

Personal Request: Our friends received news in the night of their son’s going home to be with the Lord. He has entered into the joy of the Lord. Even as we rejoice in hope, our hearts are broken for their pain in a life that to us was cut short. Whatever word of the Lord you would like to say to the next generation, don’t wait to say them, and please, would you pray for our friends and their family. Thank you.