Write Your Heart Out - Thoughts on Meeting Leighton Ford

This week, I spent time with Leighton Ford in his Charlotte home. Leighton, now well into his eighties, married Billy Graham’s youngest sister, Jean. He traveled the globe with Billy and others as an evangelist, but we didn’t talk about Billy—at all. I didn’t even think about Billy the whole time I was with him. Leighton is his own man. Well, I should clarify; he’s God’s man.

Leighton’s carefree demeanor settled me into his parlor chair; his home’s airiness and spaciousness welcomed me and cleared my thoughts. We talked about many things, but one thing stuck with me as we discoursed about his writing career. In a passing thought, he said, “I write whatever is on my heart. Sometimes I write for my own healing, but I never write for a market. I write because my heart has something to say.”

Good writing may find an audience, but that’s not why we write. We write because our heart has something to say, and often we don’t know what that is until pen hits paper, until fingers grace keyboards. That’s where we begin, with something our heart longs to communicate. We only know what that is when we take time to listen to our lives. To that end, I’ll recommend Leighton’s book titled The Attentive Life. This week, take time to write every day down. Write less than you should, but write more often. Your life is worth paying attention to.