The Intentional Audience

The Intentional Audience

It seems to me that readers read to “get” and writers write to “give,” and if what is given meets the needs of the “getter,” then both sides win. 

This scenario echoes what Watchman Nee calls “ministry.” He says that with the help of the Holy Spirit we can identify the condition (of the reader, our audience) and then offer the message needed (through our writing).

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The Intentional Writer

The Intentional Writer

A writer is someone for whom writing is more difficult than it is for other people. —Thomas Mann

 

I dreamed one night that I was asked to announce the title of my next book publicly (from a stage of some kind). But as I stood there after making the announcement, I had the uneasy feeling that I had just announced the wrong book—that the audience was expecting me to give another title. I woke up at 3:00 a.m. unnerved.

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Tents and Tribes

Tents and Tribes

I don’t know if you are like me, but thoughts race before the eyes of my mind like cars on a fast-moving train. I glimpse an idea for a split second before another one zips by without invitation and disappears before I can blink. Most of those train cars are vaguely familiar to me because the ideas they represent have come around before . . . they keep coming around until I finally reach out and grasp one and pin it down for closer examination—much like an artist might grab a fallen leaf and pin it on a board in order to examine it closely enough to paint it.

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Identity Theft of Another Kind

Identity Theft of Another Kind

From my research on the impostor phenomenon, I have gained insight into how identity is shaped or misshaped during the early years, and how personalities come forth from identity. As I began to better understand the inner workings of internalizing what we see and hear, I looked back on my life’s journey and realized that who I was created to be . . . was not who I had become. 

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That Still Small Voice

That Still Small Voice

You know, when you hear that still small voice inside you say something—interrupting your normal thoughts and seemingly out-of-context—you just have to stop what you’re doing and pay attention. For me, that means I grab my journal and write it down with date and time. I then remain alert going forward . . . sometimes for days, or months, or even years with an awakened awareness of those softly spoken but always profound words.

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What's in a Word?

What's in a Word?

It’s a little difficult to put myself back into a third-grade mindset and write this as if it were happening currently. But I can tell you that my memories are sharp and the details fine-tuned from replaying it repeatedly over the years. It’s one of those scenes that would be a fascinating psychological study if you could re-gather the main characters and have each tell the incident from their point of view. But all I can tell you . . . is my own. I remember it this way.

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Where Does Need Take Us?

Where Does Need Take Us?

I was seventeen years old with one baby in the crib and another one on the way, I suffered from morning sickness throughout the day, and I had a husband who didn’t care about me or the babies he had fathered. In his mind, I was a failure in the kitchen—I didn’t cook like his mother—and I was a failure in the bedroom—I was not the sweet young thing he wanted me to be. I was exhausted, depressed, and uncomfortably big with child. 

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What Does Forgiveness Look Like?

What Does Forgiveness Look Like?

To take a break from my reading, I sit down on the cold tile of my office in married student housing, pull out the bottom drawer of the file cabinet nearest the door, and begin rummaging through some of my personal files that I had managed to preserve over the years of moving around. The wind is howling outside and clouds are causing a shadowed darkness to fall over this part of the campus. (An excerpt from my book, The Impostor Affect: A Closer Look by a Classic Case)

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