Partner with the Holy Spirit
by David Holland
“Many have undertaken to draw up an account of the things that have been fulfilled among us, just as they were handed down to us by those who from the first were eyewitnesses and servants of the word. Therefore, since I myself have carefully investigated everything from the beginning, it seemed good also to me to write an orderly account for you, most excellent Theophilus, so that you may know the certainty of the things you have been taught.”
Have you found writing isn’t as easy as it looks? As I spend countless morning hours wrestling with words, I inevitably come to an end of myself.
“Help Lord,” my heart cries.
Then comes the inner urge to turn to the scriptures for insight. Often that leading will bring me to the Gospel of Luke.
I’ve studied Luke for over ten years and am still shocked by his ability to write the most extraordinary story ever told. I know the Holy Spirit inspired every word, but Luke the author had to craft the writing. Christian writers face similar challenges as we hope to partner with the Lord in our work.
“What’s so special about Luke?” A friend asked me. Luke, unlike any of the other New Testament writers, never physically saw Christ nor witnessed any of the events he records. He came to Christ the same way we did–by faith. He is also the only Gentile writer in the Bible. Educated in the Greco-Roman world, as opposed to the Middle Eastern culture of Israel, gives Luke a western cultural mindset much like ours.
Luke employed meticulous research to assimilate this gospel written for the Gentile world. For instance, Luke traces Christ’s lineage back to the first man Adam while Matthew only traces Jesus’s ancestry back to the first Jew, Abraham. Also, Luke probably interviewed Mary extensively and records her first-hand observations of the Lord’s birth. The other gospels omit her thoughts.
Doctor Luke provides medical details and records healings with insight. His compassion for the poor continually surfaces and he gives women a prominent place in the gospel story. Luke’s heart and writing process enhance our understanding of the Son of God.
As we give ourselves to writing for the Lord, are we doing the work required? Are we yielding to the gentle nudges of the Holy Spirit as he guides us on paths to investigate? Do we help people see Jesus in ways they can understand? These are the challenges Christian writers face. Our writing is a partnership with the Holy Spirit, and Luke demonstrates how to do it well.
Dear Lord, we need your help in our writing. Help us communicate the greatness of your Son—Jesus Christ. We need strength for the journey, fortitude for the work, and the integrity to give our best to you and our readers. Amen.