Proverbs 23:7 - "For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he."
The verse above is a powerful statement of the mind. What it speaks of is character. Character is the essence of a person’s heart. When writing, character is what sets the hero and heroine apart from others.
We use the terms, hero and heroine, because all the good can be written into a protagonist with a story to tell. But how do we get there?
We must first start within the thoughts of our hero and heroine. What do they each think in the privacy of their thoughts? Are they constantly striving to better themselves? Do they hope, dream and look for ways to resolve issues? When they see a hurt puppy, do they try to help? When they see a child fall down on a bike, do they rush over to see if he is OK? When they see an old person struggling to open a door with a Bible in one hand and a cane in the other, do they help? Do they think it is the right thing to do when no one is around to question? Setting up our hero/heroine to think and do acts of kindness without forethought is one way to instill them with character. The foundation is laid. Now, when they move on to larger dilemmas that require more thought, the reader will see if they fall back on the previous heroic kindnesses that promise more insight.
Sow a thought and reap an act;
Once our hero and heroine have determined a course of action, do they act? Do they physically get up and take action against wrongdoing? Do they do the right thing in the face of danger, fear, and distress? Do they do the right thing even when it’s boring, and without reward? Do they do the right thing when no one is looking?
Sow an act and reap a habit;
Habits are ways in which people cope with what they consider ordinary. Just as a smoker feels compelled to light up a cigarette, so characters must be compelled to believe their habits have meaning. With a Christian character, it should be habitual for them to look to God first when life overwhelms. And in some aspects of their thoughts, the hero/heroine must have an almost lackadaisical attitude. It should be habitual that they help hurt puppies, fallen children and old ladies. It should be habitual that they ask for deliverance. There should be no question, no thought in their minds to do otherwise. It is habit. Good habits begat good characters. Even when the going gets tough, our hero and heroine can fall back on their good habits.
Sow a habit and reap a character;
When good habits abound in thought, word and deed, the character shines. This is a person whom a reader will want to know. When circumstances put our hero/heroine in a bad situation, they must rely on the habits of a lifetime to continue down the road to resolution. They must rely on their kindnesses, their acts and their habits, to deal with the situation in manner consistent with the character we have established earlier in the story.
Sow a character and reap a destiny.
The characters are set. Now, the situation is ready to be introduced. It is here that the character will come against a problem that will shake the foundation of all he/she holds dear. Will they allow it to overcome? Will they draw on the power of their minds, act on the decision, react with the strength of their habits, and learn their abilities can equal the task? Will they take a stand to control of their own fate, and seal their destiny?
"For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he."
We must sow our words wisely. Strengthen our characters to respond with kindness, mercy, grace and vigilance. Build a strong foundation, and then rest our characters against it when they must deal with crisis.