Sunday, August 5, 2018

Words in the Windstorm


by Audrey Frank @AudreyCFrank

Have windy words no limit? Or what provokes you that you keep on talking?(Job 16:3, NRSV)

The wind along the shore was relentless. We were vacationing on a narrow barrier island off the shore of North Carolina, a wild and uninhabited place, its rustic cabins offering a view of the sea in front and grassy inlets behind. The constant, untamed wind gave our getaway a sense of thrill and adventure for the first two days. By the third morning, however, we were battered and weary. We could not hear each other speak over the howling. We could not easily walk along the beach against its pummeling. We certainly could not build a fire or grill out. We could not relax outside. Discouraged, we withdrew indoors while the wind howled on relentlessly.

On the fourth day, we asked the Lord to calm the wind. And that is exactly what He did. 

At first, when we ventured back outside, we didn’t realize what exactly had happened. We noticed something was different. Looking at each other, we exclaimed in unison, “The wind has calmed down!” We stayed outside that day from sunup to sundown, resting and restoring in the sunshine, enjoying the gentle breeze that had replaced the noisy gale.

Our words, written or spoken, can be like gale-force winds. In the beginning, they may create excitement, thrill, and keen attention in those who receive them. But after a short time, they become battering, blasting, wearying. Windy words that have no limit become mere noise in the ears, scattering order, and leaving discouragement and dismay in their path.

How do we avoid adding to the exhausting clamor in today’s world of words? How do we instead craft our words like the gentle breeze, offering comfort and restoration, relief and refreshment?

I believe the answer is simple. We ask the Lord of the wind to calm it in us. Calm our words, Lord, and bring refreshment through us.

And that is exactly what He will do.

This simple practice can transform our writing. Let us go to Jesus, the One who spoke His own words with the power to transform stormy wind to calm sea. He is the secret to wielding words that do not exhaust. His quiet wisdom is the key to writing that does not fill the already uproarious world with more cluttered prose. If we ask Him, He will give us words that bear His gentle power to calm, order, and bring relief to the wind-battered shores of today’s weary world.

TWEETABLES

This one discipline can make your words calm the windstorm of a word-cluttered world - @AudreyCFrank on @EdieMelson (Click to Tweet)

Audrey Frank is an author, speaker, and storyteller. The stories she shares are brave and true. They give voice to those whose words are silenced by shame, the hard things in life that don’t make sense, and the losses that leave us wondering if we will survive. Audrey and her family have spent over twenty years living and working among different cultures and world views, and she has found that God’s story of redemption spans every geography (geographical location)  and culture. He is the God of Instead, giving honor instead of shame, gladness instead of mourning, hope instead of despair. Although she has three different degrees in communication and intercultural studies, Audrey’s greatest credential is that she is known and loved by the One who made her.

Her upcoming book, From Shame to Honor, is an outpouring of Audrey’s heart to introduce others to the God of Instead. Shame is not unique to the developing world, the plight of the women behind veils, young girls trafficked across borders; shame is lurking in hearts everywhere. Through powerful stories from women around the world, From Shame to Honor illuminates the power of the Gospel to remove shame, giving honor instead. Look for it through Harvest House Publishers in the fall of 2018.

You can also find Audrey at www.audreyfrank.com, as well as on Twitter and Facebook

2 comments:

  1. Thank you for these thoughts. They touched me this morning.

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  2. What beautiful thoughts- and the prayer- I wrote It out and made it mine. Thank you for the gift in your words.

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