Writing into the new year.

I should, I suppose, end the year with a verse. Or a Bible passage. Instead, I’m giving you ten ways to start writing. I have conversations with people who are trying to figure out what to say or where to start. “But what do I say?” they say. “Where do I start?”

I suppose the right question might be, “But why should I start?”For Mary, telling Luke the stories that she had been pondering in her heart gave us the stories of Mary and Elizabeth, Mary and the baby, Mary and the angel. For me, writing helps me find out what I am thinking.

There is no magic here, no promises, no guarantees that you will find the words that will help you make sense of the world, or help others. That said, these might help. Write the question at the top of a page and answer it.

  1. What if it will be okay? What could I do then? (Whatever you are worried about going bad, imagine that it doesn’t.)
  2. Maybe if we tried this for a week? (What would the new habit, the new arrangement, the new commitment.)
  3. After that happened, here’s what I did. (I bet this is what Luke asked Mary. (It’s the question Guy Raz asks.))
  4. When I think about that experience, I can’t stop thinking about this amazing person. “That nurse in that moment was so understanding . . .”
  5. Process your learning: If I encounter _x situation_, I could do _action y_, and I would expect _ outcome z__.
  6. Here are 8 ways to do ___. (8 ways to pray, 8 ways to say “I love you” in practical ways.)
  7. Here’s what I want to be true about me in five years.
  8. If I have just three months of great health left, here’s what I want to make sure I do.
  9. Today, I’m letting go of…
  10. Chapter 4: After my dad died, I started to …

If you need a challenge to help you get started, take out a sheet of paper, start writing with one of these, and then mail it to me. I’ll read it and offer whatever kind of response you indicate.


3933 Hedwig Dr
Fort Wayne, IN 46815

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