Calling on YOU to Write!

I am challenging us to write!  A sermon or Bible lesson is a powerful thing.

The challenges in spoken communication

* Spoken words have little staying power – we remember little of what we hear and take action on  less.

* Public speaking does not travel well – even with access to You-tube, Periscope and Face-book Live.

Lest you think I’m down on preaching, let me explain the challenge. The influence of an anointed preacher often lasts as long as he or she speaks. Few listeners take action within 72 hours. Even for the greatest speakers – men who captivated large audiences – what was said is left behind by loss of memory, technology and the changing voices of time.

Charles Spurgeon had several contemporaries who were as popular in the pulpit as him; today those men are relatively unknown. Their work, research and presentation is forgotten. Today, Spurgeon remains an influence because Spurgeon’s material is in print.

In my lifetime, great preachers and pastors have come and gone. The late George Glass Sr. was called “The Prince george-glass-srof Preachers.” He preached over 50 camp-meetings and was a communicator extraordinaire. I’ve over 100 cassettes of his sermons. Every message was masterful. Yet, for my son, a church planter in Atlanta also interested in effective preaching, George Glass’s influence is minimal. To my knowledge, fewer than a dozen of George Glass’s sermons are in print. What a loss of impact and beneficial influence.

Some suggest transferring such cassettes to digital sound. Transferring cassette to digital is challenged by:

* The quality of the original recordings,
* The age of the tape
* The time it takes to make the transfer.

g-a-mangun
As a result of these challenges and a lack of writing, much of the excellent research and preaching material of people like G. T. Haywood, Bishop J. Johnson, N.A. Urshan, J.T. Pugh, Paul Price, C. M. Becton, C. R. Free, Stanley Chambers, James Lumpkin Sr., O.C. Crabtree, Jesse Williams, G.A. Mangun, John and Nilah Mean and Jack Yonts is forever gone. A wealth of teaching and sermon material is not in print.c-m-becton

Consider this, it is rare for the influence of the spoken word to last ten years beyond the life of the speaker; the written word lasts much longer. Decades after the death of Ralph Reynolds, who I never met, his teaching material is used all over the world and I regularly recommend his book, If the Sheep Could Speak. J.T. Pugh wrote several books late in life. J.T. Pugh’s impact will linger much longer as a result of those books. E.L. and Nona Freeman’s missionary adventures live on because of her writing beginning with Beloved Wide Spot.

A final glaring example of the power of the pen is seen in the increased influence that flowed to Dr. David K. Bernard as a result of his writing and writing and writing. Today, he is General Superintendent of the United Pentecostal Church, at least in part, as a result of the influence gained from his capable and quality writing.

My conclusion – to my elders, contemporaries and the arriving generation – where you do not write – your impact will not remain. If you want your influence to extend beyond your local church or a few events at which you speak, or an office you hold –  write! Write now!

book-shelves-full-of-booksWarning!  If you do not write, what you have said and/or thought will die with you. By contrast, what you write has a life for decades and centuries to come. It will be sad if the impacting content from Michael Williams, the passion of Anthony Mangun and Wayne Huntley; the research of Clifford Readout and Rodney Shaw; the scholarship of Donald K. Bryant and Michael Gurley; the practical leadership lessons of Art Hodges, Roy Barnhill and Granville McKenzie; and the biographies of Murrel Cornwell, Alonzo Terry, Scott Sistrunk and Raul Orozco along with a myriad of others is also buried. Write brothers and sisters write!

Write for blog posts!

Write for publication!

Over the next while, I will come back to this topic with posts that will offer practical insight on writing, editing, book design, printing and marketing. It has never been easier to write, edit, publish and market your material. My posts will include the following.

1. Write – use content you develop in multiple ways!
2. Re-write – The making of the book.
3. What quality writing looks like.
4. Empower an editor.
5. Cover design.
6. Printing your material.
7. Proof.
8. Marketing your material.
9. Write another book, then another and another. Writing gets better and easier with practice.

Of course, an author also enjoys selling their stuff. I’ve quite a number of books already in print – an omnibus of almost all my writing (one or two books are either out of print or not under my control) is available for a limited time at 50% off cover prices. Visit CarltonCoonsr.com for this offer and for other great options.  If you have not signed up to receive our current offer or blog posts please do so using the popup.  If you’d like to compare the writing from my first book – Daily Things of Christian Living with my latest Revival in a Plain Brown Wrapper you can purchase either or both just now. Only a few dozen Daily Things of Christian Living (first edition) remain available.  These make great Christmas gifts!

Relax and Refocus

November 25, 2016

What to Write? Ohh, What to Write?

November 25, 2016

21 Thoughts on Calling on YOU to Write!

  1. This read just gave encouragment and confirmation. Thank you, Elder.

    Reply
    • Pastor,
      Thanks for your response. I encourage you to read all of the blogs that build off this. If I may ask what church organization are you part of? I’ve a reason for asking – it is not sinister – I’m trying to learn who my readers are.

      C. Coon

      Reply
  2. Would it not be a good idea to transcribe some of these recordings to be published in book forms or as articles. Could possibly be a great project for a Pentecostal publishing company or Bible college.

    Reply
  3. Well written and much needed! The Lord has placed me in position vet the last few years to participate in this very calling–to write and help others write for the glory of God. I pray the pens and keystrokes are quickened by your article. I know has fueled my fire to press on, or rather write on!!! Thank you!

    Reply
  4. Well said, Bro. Coon. I just posted your article onto my Facebook page. I agree that we need more men and women who will take up your challenge and leave a written legacy for the next generation. I published my first book, The Grace Blueprint: The Story of the Tabernacle, in June 2016. Thank you for challenging Apostolics to write.

    Reply
    • Thank you for writing and for sharing my post on your facebook page. Feel free to do that. We need to influence the future.

      C. Coon

      Reply
  5. Right on target. In my early days of ministry I wore out the old manual and electric typewriter ribbons endlessly writing. Now- in the days of blogs, wordprocessing, voice to text and online publishing- I am actually writing less than I did in those early days. Your article has convicted me.

    I heard one time that “With his sword, Nero took Paul’s head. With his pen, Paul took Nero’s empire.”

    Reply
    • Bro. Deckard,

      Hey my friend. Your name actually came to mind as one of those who we need to have more stuff from. My experience has been that the more books, etc. that I’ve got out there the greater my number of readers. As you well know it is hard work, but rewarding because of the long term impact.

      How about sharing the facebook post on your own FB page. I’m wanting to be part of starting a flood.

      Reply
  6. Thank you for effort. I too am interested in what you have to offer in the days ahead. I have been trying to get a yearly devotional together and hope to glean from this. Shalom and God bless…

    Reply
    • Greetings – the work of writing is fulfilling. I’d like to see several devotionals specifically aimed at several targets – (1) Aimed at Christian newcomers – these devotions would circulate around some basic premises. (2) a devotion aimed at gaining basic Bible knowledge.

      You could actually start your effort with drafting a daily devotional that you’d post on Facebook or on a website.

      Keep me in the loop.
      C. Coon

      Reply
  7. Greetings from a vacation cabin in Southern Oregon surrounded by mountains and snow!

    I am actively working on culling through my blog to publish my first of several books. Some posts are directly related to sermons in the past, others are part of my daily task of writing a devotion from what God shares with me via his Word, a thought, a word, or a situation. My interest in writing came late in life after I finished my masters program and found I enjoyed writing, almost more than I enjoyed reading!

    As I am a techie and have trimmed my library to mainly buying digital copies, have you found a balance between print and digital where your return on investment is better one way or the other?

    Perhaps you could find a niche for yourself to offer coaching services to help struggling authors bring their books into print. I’m connected to a number of people who do this successfully, and I know you’ve mentioned Michael Hyatt on one of your blog answers, but I’ve gleaned so much from them I think it would be nice to have an apostolic voice doing the same thing.

    Anyway! Blessings as you continue you ministry.

    Michael Gurley
    https://about.me/michael_gurley

    Reply
    • My friend . . .

      The cabin sounds like a great place to be. In the midwest, we have had a long Indian Summer and now the grayness of fall is upon us. Soon this will pass though. You were one of the fellows whose material, scholarship and knowledge does not need to get away without being published. I’m glad to hear that you are preparing to make sermon material available to us.

      In regard to books – you and I are likely of the era that will prefer the paper in hand rather than on the Ipad. That being said, I’ve sold off quite a bit of my research material because it is so easy to access a broad array of material either online, using WordSearch or Mantis on the Ipad. In another era, if I wanted to study a particular item having to do with Abraham i might pull 25 books from my shelves, open to the relevant portion and then highlight and type the parts that interested me into Wordperfect or MS Word. These days, that work can be done in 1/4 of the time and quite a number of my research stuff is gone. Some others – like the few thousand sermon books I’ve gathered – I’m just not able to give up just yet. So I don’t answer your question well. Two weeks ago, Stan Gleason recommended DiscipleShift to me. I found myself ordering a hard copy (used” from Amazon, rather than getting the Kindle version. I do appreciate that the Kindle versions now allow more highlighting, cutting and pasting and making marginal notes.

      I don’t know if the helping struggling authors would be my niche. Some folk tend to get “a word from the Lord.” The word from the Lord cannot be edited, adjusted, made more readable, etc. In today’s culture of quick, cheap and easy printing and cross-continent editing, etc. there is a real need for someone to inform people of what the process can look like and where they can go to get help with editing, cover design, etc. To be honest, I did not expect quite so much buzz on this particular topic. It seems I’ll need to stay with it until I finish it now . . . eventually I’ll put all of these ruminations on writing into an ebook.

      Carlton Coon

      Reply
  8. Bro. Coon,

    Thank you for the email and the subject of writing. I’ve been interested in writing for awhile now, but don’t have any idea where to start. When will you be writing the next blog on this subject? You mentioned nine points you will be sharing with us. I’m looking forward to reading what you have to say.

    Sincerely,
    Linda Elms

    Reply
    • Sis. Elms,

      Your wealth of experience offers more topics than you can likely get too. The need for practical material for pastor’s wives cannot be overstated. I’d love to see a history of your husband’s family too. It is interesting to realize how few topics have actually been adequately addressed.

      C. Coon

      Reply
  9. Bro Coon, I just told a friend of mine who pastors the first Church plant my wife and I started in Paris Ky, just the other day. I told him that I was going to start rewriting my sermon notes into a blog form. I really want my thoughts and inspiration to live on. My thoughts were that I wanted to leave them for my children. Thanks for confirming this I really like that is the right thing to do. I hope more preachers start writing.

    Thanks and God bless
    Jeremy Mills

    Reply
    • Bro. Mills,

      Thank you for being a church planter. I commend you for thinking in this direction. It makes me shudder to think of the wealth of information that has not been gathered for retention. What you are planning to do with your sermons is good. The book Platform (Micheal Hyatt) has some excellent guidance on how long each blog post should be, how to format it. In response to my post here, one pastor told me of his use of a daily blog on the church Facebook page. It has garnered much response from the community. Keep me posted . . . and I’d count it a favor if you’d share my website and blogs with all your friends. Referrals mean a lot. C. Coon

      Reply
  10. A confirmation of the call of God to write books, already blessed by my pastor. I’m not on FB, only Twitter. How do I follow your posts? I’m just getting started, so I have a lot to learn.

    Reply
    • Karetha,

      When you visit Carltoncoonsr.com you will have one of those annoying pop-ups come on the screen. If you will sign up there – not only will you get information on each of my blog posts, but will receive a free e-book. Please keep me posted on your efforts.

      Reply

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