Words have power.
Words have power. I am inspired by writers who love words enough to take the time to search for the word that will heal, challenge, console, uplift, encourage, renew, inform and awaken. In a world so full of words that do not nourish, it is heartening to meet just the right word on the page open before you. It is somewhat like meeting a friend in whose company you can flourish and grow.
Writing is a ministry. It is a way of facilitating and supporting the gift of life in others. It is a gathering of words that help readers see new horizons and find fresh hope in moments of discouragement. It is also a way of revealing truths that are sometimes difficult to face. A writer cares deeply about life and wants to draw forth that care in others. The writer points us toward the joy and pain of being human, teaches us to find truth in blessing and adversities. He or she is captivated by the passionate flow and wants us to experience the grace that can be found in each moment. There is a life in all things that cries out for renewal, protection, unveiling. Writers often hear that cry and set it free by means of stories, poems, essays, memoirs. In a world where words are so often used without reverence, how gratifying it is to discover a true disciple of the word—one who holds and beholds words as tenderly as a photographer beholds an image through the lens of the eye. I wonder how many writers consider their writing as a ministry. As they shuffle through all those words searching for the right word, do they see themselves as ministers of the word? Do they sometimes become sentinels watching and waiting for a word that will instruct, illuminate and mend the mind and heart?
Writer’s minister to us by keeping watch over all that is precious and immortal in our lives. They lead us to deep wells of truth within our being and assist us in recognizing that which we already know but have forgotten. When Dom Helder Camara cries out to God, “What is the point of your presence among us if our lives do not change,” a great longing inside me opens its eyes and looks toward conversion. In her sacred poetry Jessica Powers using words that have fallen from the heaven of her heart, speaks passionately to the sleeping mystic in us. Carried on the wings of the ordinary, we are drawn into a mystical journey with the Beloved.
Excerpts from Let the Words Choose You, May 2000, Sisters Today
by Sister Macrina Wiederkehr, OSB
Many Come In Darkness
An Interview with Macrina Wiederkehr