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Tuesday, 18 November 2014

The Earth is the Lord's...

The Earth is the Lord’s and if we work with him it can be sustainably developed!

I’ve spent the afternoon editing an article on the above topic. It is an excellent article but just too long for the space restrictions of our quarterly church magazine. 

Editing means reading something again and again and questioning every word and phrase, looking for repetitions and searching for more economic ways of conveying the meaning. 

I was putting into practice in words what the article was encouraging readers to do in action: reduce and minimise in order to achieve sustainability in the world. 

It’s a bit like putting a message in a bottle. You want to convey the meaning in as few words as possible so that people read it and take action. 

We live in an age of texts. Of soundbites. Of Twitter. Limited words = maximum impact. 

Without wishing to sensationalise the message, you want to grab peoples’ attention and transmit the facts before they’ve been distracted onto something else.

When we quote from the Bible in the church mag, I suppose it is in sound bites, but always with the hope that readers will go look up the reference and read the passage in context. I am hoping that this fact-filled article will be available in another form, on a website, and that we can point people to a place where they can read the full story.

Editing is all very well, and you do want writing to be tight and pacy. But you don’t want to do that at the expense of truth. 

Whenever you read an excerpt of Jesus’ words or a bit of the Bible, it’s always a good idea to look it up and check out the context. Easier these days to do that with Bible apps which can find the place in seconds. 

Though there is nothing like relaxing back, by a roaring fire, and losing yourself in the best love story ever written.

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