Thursday, February 21, 2013

Six Tips for Helping the Busiest of Pastors to Start Writing

In his book, 25 Principles for Leadership That Matters, Albert Mohler states that, “Leaders who want to make a difference, and to make that difference last, must write.”

I am passionate about writing. I’ve often wondered if I’m a pastor who writes or a writer who pastors. In actuality I don’t think these two can be easily separated. Writing is a huge part of my pastoral ministry. It’s easy for me to heed Mohler’s advice to write. Other pastors have to work harder at writing. For those of you that read my article yesterday on 7 Reasons Why Pastors Should Be Writers, and immediately thought to yourself, “no way, man”. This article is for you.

Here are Six Tips for Helping the Busiest of Pastors to Start Writing

  1. Write out your sermons and edit them for the public. You don’t have to go into the pulpit with a full manuscript if that isn’t your bag. But it does help to be intentional about your thoughts and really flesh out the right words. Once you write your sermons you could easily turn one sermon into a week of blog posts.
  2. Prioritize. It is essential that you are convinced that writing is a vital part of your ministry. If not it will get thrown aside quickly. Force yourself to write at least something every day.
  3. Make it part of your devotional time. Do your daily devotionals with a pen and paper. Write out your thoughts and prayers. Go back to them a week later and try to craft them into an article.
  4. Avoid procrastination, today. This is especially for those of us that have deadlines to meet. If you don’t take captive every moment then sure enough you’ll be called out for a hospital visit when you had planned on writing.
  5. It’s okay if you aren’t Stephen King. You don’t have to be the best writer in the world. Just write something. If it’s not good enough for publication then keep it between you and your aunt Maude. Or perhaps try a blog. That’s where us not-ready-for-primetime players get our feet wet and actually get gooder…I mean better.
  6. Read Good Writers. You will get better at communicating if you take the time to read those that have mastered the craft. Don’t spend all your time in commentaries. One of the most helpful things that you can do for your preaching and ministry is to read a good novel. (Please don’t misunderstand what I am saying. I know that the power is in the Word preached and not the preachers eloquence. But we don’t necessarily have biblical promises attached to the words that we choose in business meetings. Those can be made better by reading helpful communicators).

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