I grew up writing letters – so many in fact, that Mama would buy me my own book of stamps to keep me out of hers. That’s what you did in the 1980s when your best friend moved two hours away and when you had a dozen great friends you met at a church camp the next state over.
Then came email and eventually social media, and I went years without sending a single letter, just a few lines in birthday cards and the occasional thank you note. But I missed writing letters. Facebook helped me share widely with my friends, but I wasn’t sharing deeply.
So, I bought two boxes of stationery and I began again. When I needed to talk about being a better mother, I wrote to my best friend. When I missed Daddy and wanted to feel closer to his memory, I wrote to his sisters. When I found something whimsical and sparkly, I mailed it to my littlest nieces and nephew.
And I just kept going.
When others heard about my hobby, they would give me notecards and stickers and it got easier and easier to keep up the habit. This year, after most of the photos of Christmas trees had faded from Facebook, I posted a quick status update about getting cool new stationery as a gift and I asked if anyone wanted a card or a letter. Seventeen people responded.
They wanted something other than bills in their mailboxes, something that would give rather than take. They wanted something other than junk mail, something that told them they were worth treasuring.
That’s when letter writing changed for me – when it moved from sentimental sharing to something holy. That’s when it became a way to serve others, a way to encourage.
If you are interested in learning five simple ways that you can write more letters and touch more hearts, visit SimplyFaithful.com Jan. 15-19 (or make it easier on yourself and slip your email address into the box at the bottom of this page). Each day I’ll address a topic like finding ideas to write about, finding inspiration and finding people to write to. I’ll talk about how to work writing into your already full schedule and even recommend supplies to keep it affordable.
Then, together, we can write messages of hope and grace.