I believe writers enjoy their own writing twice. As writers, they enjoy wrestling to give birth to their vision in words. Then as readers, they rediscover their own words with a certain surprise: “Wow! Did I write that?” Words and language and writing have power. Writing preserves our best thoughts and gives them a life of their own—a life of serendipity and meaning.
This same synergy happens in prayer, especially written prayer. First, we form our prayer and then our prayer forms us.
Writing prayers is a special type of writing, like journaling with God as an audience. I have been writing my prayers for decades—I am a pilgrim along the prayer-path. I know that writing prayers helps us pray well. It facilitates our thinking because we see our thoughts more clearly in writing. Writing it down demands that we pray intentionally, and these prayers can be refined, reused. They can reinvigorate our passions and give us words when we have none left.
I strongly advocate writing down prayers for our writing. To pray for our writing is to access all the goodness and power and joy and zeal and grace of God. Writing birthed in prayer is powerful because our powerful God infuses every part of the process—the author’s ideas, the work of writing, and the readers who receive it.
Since God receives our prayers, prayer has an eternal life in Him. All prayer is archived in Him. He treasures our prayers like incense always burning before him.
I experienced the power and synergy of written prayers while rereading Prayers for Writers, the compilation that CCWF published in January 2020. I was part of the editorial team which put together the book and I was a contributor.
But it was not rereading my own prayers which blessed me. What blessed me most was immersing myself In the ensemble, the collaboration of writers and voices. I got to read the prayers other people labored to craft. I entered their experience as writers, and I looked to God with them.
Prayer is not a substitute for action—there is no substitute for working to craft the skill of writing and putting in the hours to birth your work. Prayer is no substitute for doing the hard work of marketing. Prayer is simply prelude to it all. But what a prelude!
Let me use some prayers from the book to pray for you. I think of my writing friends: Ones too busy to attend meetings. Ones who have moved. Someone who writes in Spanish and English. Seasoned authors. Newspaper contributors. Ones who write travelogues and spiritual development and biography and adventure romance and historical fiction. Everyone is still so special to me—and even more so, important to God.
For those who are discouraged:
Dear Lord, today I need to write, but quite honestly, I don’t feel like it. I feel discouraged and aware of all my shortcoming. I know You’ve given me a writing gift, but I feel inadequate. I ‘m tempted to compare myself with others. Remind me to lean on You, instead of my feelings. (Jennifer Hinders, p. 3).
For those who are sitting down to write:
You have settled me in this place to write
I thank you for the opportunity to put pen to paper—
Fingers to keyboard
To write the words You give. (Ann Westerman, p. 10).
Whisper prayer for writers to say all day:
Walk beside me through this writing journey, Lord. (p. 76).
Scripture prayer for writers:
Pray that your writing ministry would be blessed. “Oh that you would bless me and enlarge my territory! Let Your hand be with me…” (1 Chron. 4:10, NIV, Jenn Soehlin, p. 87)
A writers blessing for you:
May He give you the desires of your heart and make all your plans succeed. May we shout for joy over your victory and bring our banners in the name of our God. May the Lord rant all your requests (Psalm 20:4-5). (Sharon Holmes, p 79)
The prayers are for you. Hear them and then write your own prayers. When you reread your own prayers, I believe with all my heart that you will be blessed.
Purchase Prayers for Writers