By Don Zoller
Building bridges is not only an engineering challenge, it is often an art form. Building bridges is part of human history that helps people get from one side to the other side with the least amount of effort. That idea is also ingrained in how we talk and write, or it should be.
Last week, I spent time talking about the importance of words and sentences. Building bridges involves not only how we link our sentences together but, importantly, our paragraphs. The more skilled we are in building word bridges the easier it is for our readers to get from one thought to the next. This transition is the bridge that helps keep the conversation or story flowing.
In many ways, these bridges are instinctively included in our oral conversations. We use these transitions or word bridges as a way to be understood when we speak. But at times they are missing in our writing. We often move from one subject to another without making a connection. This often leaves our reader stranded trying to figure out how to make the crossing. Sometimes, the abruptness without a transition is so stark that the reader may wonder if he or she is still reading the same story.
For example, in one paragraph we may be talking about the beauty of flowers. But the last sentence of that paragraph should say, “The beauty of flowers is dependent on the condition of the soil in which they are planted.” The next paragraph can then begin by talking about the importance of proper soil condition. That is a bridge or transition we need between our paragraphs, and even, at times, between our sentences.
Remember, as you write you are telling a story. The story you are telling is about God’s faithfulness throughout your life. Although events may change, His faithfulness does not. It moves unbroken from one event to another. Help the reader stay with your story. Check your writing to make sure you have constructed the necessary bridges between your paragraphs to keep your reader engaged with your faith journey.
Your action today—Think about how you can construct word bridges in such a way that it easily takes the reader from one side to the other without missing a beat in the flow of the story you are telling. Now, having thought about it, go ahead and start building bridges! Until next time . . .
Blessings and Shalom
Christ Jesus himself being the cornerstone, in whom the whole structure,
being joined together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord.
Don has recently joined the family at Trinity and is active in the 50+ Bible Study. He enjoys writing and has authored several books that provide spiritual encouragement and biblical insights. His son and daughter-in-law, Graham and Susan, are also members at Trinity.