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Calling all Christian Writers!
by Richard McCaw
11/28/2014 / Writing
Come one, come all to the Critique Circle!
In London long ago you might have heard in the night a town crier, dressed in red and gold robe, white breeches, black boots and a tricorne hat, and seen him walking through the streets, ringing an handbell and crying out, "THREE O'CLOCK AND ALL'S WELL."
If I we could imagine ourselves, as the Body of Christ, comfortably asleep, while the world around us is lost and perishing, we could also imagine an angel crying out. "This is the midnight hour! SOON AND VERY SOON You ARE GOING TO MEET THE KING; but ALL'S NOT WELL! PREPARE THE WAY OF THE LORD!"
GOD IS CALLING HIS PEOPLE TO A SPIRITUAL REVOLUTION. The cry goes out "Awake, you who sleep, arise from the dead and Christ will give you light" (Eph 5:14).
False ideologies have been overtaking the world.
During the five most exciting years of his life, 1831 -1836, young Charles Darwin served as a naturalist aboard the H.M.S. Beagle, a British scientific expedition. He studied plants and animals wherever the ship went. The result: a diary that led to "the most revolutionary change that has ever occurred in man's view of himself." What Darwin concluded grew into another book entitled "the Origin of the Species" that challenged the Christian view that God created the world. Today, many people believe in the Theory of Evolution, while doubting the Christian Scriptures.
Karl Marx in the introduction of "The Communist Manifesto," declared "It is high time that Communists should openly, in the face of the whole world, publish their views." Through a host of militant pamphlets he unleashed tyranny and terror upon mankind, resulting in the extermination of untold millions and championed the philosophy of atheism and dialectic materialism.
When Sigmund Freud, an atheist, published his "Civilization and its Discontents," psychoanalysis became the new revelation and psychotherapy the new salvation, and his philosophy that "libido (i.e. the sex drive) is everything" has saturated modern society. Much of Freud's efforts were achieved and maintained through his writings and is still studied today in colleges and universities everywhere.
Probably one of the greatest evidences of the power of the pen can be seen also in the influence of the cults. In 1879, Charles Taze Russell founded "Zion's Watch Tower" magazine with 6,000 in print. By 1963, the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society had branches in more than 92 lands, and missionary works and kingdom preaching in over 214, with literature being distributed in 110 languages. By 1975 the Watch Tower skyrocketed to 244,000,000 in print in 78 languages. But that was a 1975 report. I cut and paste this from a research I did in 1998! Fellow writer, stretch your imagination! What must it be now?
Joseph Smith recounts in his book "The Pearl of great Price," how in 1820 he received a vision in which God, the Father, and Jesus Christ, the Son, materialized and spoke to him. Later, an angel guided him to the famous golden plates, from which he translated the Book of Mormon. Today thousands of Mormons travel in pairs from house to house. Through television they offer free the writings of Joseph Smith: The Book of Mormon. Through their many writings and missionary zeal this cult is a serious challenge to the Body of Christ worldwide.
Add to all of this invasion, the insidious infiltration of New Age philosophies and extremist sects and religions that at this very moment threaten our Judeo-Christian ethics and entire western way of life. Unless something revolutionary happens to stir the modern Christian out of comfortable lethargy, our world will become the world of the tyrannical, merciless leaders of foreign idealogies, who know the power of disciplined training and spiritual commitment to a cause for which they are willing to die.
Christian Writer, equip yourself for the battle of ideas!
The purpose of the Critique Circle is to equip Christian writers to write efficiently with the most exciting tools of the trade, and to enter the battle of ideas. We are not in a game, but a war. And the war is not about to begin. The war has already begun!
Much of Christian writing in the past has been dull and in many cases disorganized. Many Christians have said to themselves, "I do not need to study the skills of writing." Some have even said that the writers of the Bible were not scholars who obtained degrees from universities, but who wrote as their spirits led them. Some even believe that without study "the Spirit will anoint and inspire them," therefore there is no need for further education in this field.
However, Paul, the apostle encouraged his protg, young Timothy to "give attention to reading" not only to exhortation and doctrine (1 Tim 4:13). He also encouraged him to "study to show himself approved of God, a workman that does not need to be ashamed" (2 Tim 2:15). One translation renders that text, "Be diligent to present yourself approved to God, a worker who does not need to be ashamed." The idea behind the exhortation suggests discipline and hard work in order to achieve excellence.
"Give instruction to a wise man and he will be still wiser" (Prov 9:9).
The Critique Circle is a great place on FaithWriters.com to receive "correction" and "instruction." There you can examine and critique the writings of other writers and begin to detect errors. This activity helps you to become alert and also to sharpen your own skills in the art of fine writing.
At the same time for each article that you critique, you obtain 1 credit. Each credit will allow you to submit one of your own articles for criticism. What is interesting is that sometimes you may receive the criticisms, advice and suggestions of more than one writer. Seeing your article from the perspective of others is a great way to be objective about your own work.
If you are the kind of writer who falls so much in love with your writing and believes that your creation is so sacred that it cannot be examined critically, then you may have to send in a prayer request that says, "I love what I have written so much and went through so much pain creating it, I hate to see even the slightest change. I realize that my attitudes are not Christian, but somewhat egotistic. Please pray for me."
As a writer and former newspaper journalist, Critique Circle is the best place I have found to practice my art. I keep a folder of every comment made from the moment I entered the Circle. This has allowed me to change punctuation, ways of expression, and to eliminate phrases that were not carrying forward my story or article. I have rearranged paragraphs and even chapters of books I have written and am still editing. All these benefits I have received through understanding my writing from the perspectives of others.
Be wise. Join the Critique Circle experience for a lot of fun and a great journey to improve your writing skills.
All references are from the New King James Version of the Bible.
For more information go to http://www.faithwriters.com/critique-circle.php
Writing and publishing poetry and short stories since 10 years of age. Published one serialized novel in a youth magazine. Edited two magazines. Wrote freelance articles for newspapers and magazines. Became the center page devotional writer for a weekly political newspaper that reached to other countries as far as Nigeria. Classical and gospel musician and teacher (piano, violin, guitar, vocal, speech dynamics,writing technics, personal evangelism). Published one music book - "The Art of Playing by Ear -Piano Technique for absolute beginners. Pastor, evangelist (preached mostly and trained Christian leaders in high schools and churches between 1965-1994), youth pastor, elder, and father of six, 2 are musicians and teachers. Landscape artist as well. Former Senior piano instructor for Boys' and Girls' Clubs in Ft. Lauderdale. Taught Music, Spanish, Drama, Computer and Art in schools. Ministered the Word in conferences in Trinidad, Montserrat, Curacao, Guyana, Canada, England and the United States. Represented Jamaica in the Caribbean Writers' and Artists' Conference in Trinidad years ago.
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