Sunday Devotional – Learning from Others

I seem to be developing a theme lately about being able to receive correction.  It really isn’t intentional, but it is a fitting subject for us writers.  Whether that correction comes in the form of peer critiques, a professional editor, that Still, Small Voice that all of us Christian writers should know very well.

We’re going to park in Proverbs 15 for today.  Possibly for a couple of weeks.

A soft answer turns away wrath,
But a harsh word stirs up anger.
~ Proverbs 15:1 NKJV

This applies both to receiving and giving criticism and critiques.  There is a right and a wrong way to inform someone when something needs improving.  Make an effort to do it gently and tactfully, and you’ll find some who’s grateful rather than angry.

A fool despises his father’s instruction,
But he who receives correction is prudent.
~ Proverbs 15:5

Listening to what others have to say about your writing is so very important.  Even if their comments are something you decide not to go with, knowing what your readers are thinking is important.

The lips of the wise disperse knowledge . . .
~ Proverbs 15:7a

It’s always been very important to me that when someone reads my writing, that they tell me WHY something works or doesn’t work, even if they don’t know any technical terms.  I hate the generic “I liked it”.  That doesn’t give me any help at all.

Learn to be helpful. That’s the best way to get what you need in return – by helping others in the way you want to be helped.