Ephesians Chapter 4, as adapted:
1-3 Get busy writing! No sitting around on your hands. If you have a minimum of time or energy, use it to move along on the writer’s path. Don’t pick just any path. That is a sure way to a dead end. Pick the path that is uniquely your’s as a writer, the one given to you from birth. When you write, write with humility and discipline. Remember that as private as writing is as a process, as a product it is a communal act. Write with love for your craft, for words and meaning, and yes, for the reader.
4-6 It’s wonderful to be a writer, but don’t get too full of yourself. Remember, we’re all on borrowed time, we all have the usual allotment of joys and sorrows, and we are one humanity. No good or evil is off limits for us as writers. We are neither too good nor too bad to address any subject, or character. We are not in the business of being “nice” or “politically correct.” We most honor God and our craft by being completely honest in our writing, but also compassionate.
7-13. Every writer must climb his own mountain, but no writer is without the wisdom, successes, and inspiration of other writers who made it to the top. Trust me, they faced their times of discouragement and dryness. But they never lost sight of their reason for being: to write the very best they could write, and to change the world with their writing. If this is not your ultimate desire and your total conviction, you will not persist in the hardships of climbing the mountain. You have been given a gift. You are shaped uniquely by personality, experiences, parents, lovers, friends and enemies, social and economic status, career, gains and losses, mistakes and successes, pains and joys, education, culture, religion, and nation to see the world uniquely and to be in the world uniquely. Let your writing therefore be as unique as you are. Be true to your own way of seeing the world. Help us see the world as you do.
14-16. So tell the whole truth, and tell it in love. Don’t sugar coat it, and don’t lace it with poison. Be as uncompromising as God Himself in bringing both truth and grace to your writing.
17-19. Writers cannot be part of the mindless crowd. Writers have value to a nation and the world because they awaken the crowd from its sleep by their writing. That doesn’t mean they preach, it means they open up new perspectives and experiences for rut-bound readers by the telling of good stories.
20-24. So, writer, bottom line: write fiction yes, but write it truthfully in your own unique voice and character. When you lie in your writing, you lie not only to the reader, but to yourself. Use your skills at making up a good story to convey the truth of being human, and how we humans relate to one another.
26-32. The primary thing a writer does is tell a good story. Jesus was a great story teller. He didn’t tell one-dimensional, socially acceptable stories. His stories had some strange characters, some very broken and even evil characters who faced moments of crisis and choice. He liked to use the “unexpected ending” especially. So, if Jesus wasn’t afraid to tell a good story, why should you? Trust the Gift within you. Go for broke.
Ephesians Chapter 4, as adapted: