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borrowing words

I started this blog in July of 2019. At the time, I had no idea for how long I would continue writing or what the act of writing itself would come to mean to me. I just knew I wanted to somehow regularly communicate with people who were praying for BCS (and eventually WCA as well) and the idea of posting regularly on a blog seemed to fit the bill.

Two and half years and 107 blog posts later (I just counted), I'm still here and loving it just as much as I did in the beginning (if not more). Writing is sort of a funny thing though. You string together a bunch of words and put them out there for other people to read, and many times you really have no idea how you're coming across. Am I making any sense? Am I saying too much? Do I sound crazy? Are these words connecting with anyone? Let's just say it's not hard to spiral downhill quickly from there.

Recently I read back over my very first post. (You can read it here if you'd like.) I called it "more faith, less words" and it was based on a quote by Emily P. Freeman, who said, "Sometimes it takes more faith to say less words." The main point was that the power of prayer comes from the One to whom we are praying, not from the eloquence or elaborateness of the words we are saying.

Just this week in Emily's podcast (The Next Right Thing), she talked about the idea of borrowing the words of others when we find it difficult to come up with our own. Both of these concepts - using less words and using borrowed words - have at their core the same challenge for me. Maybe for you too. It's the challenge to let go of my thinking that it all depends on me.

If I don't say enough of the right words... then what? The world will fall apart?

If I can't come up with my own way of saying this... then what? I can't be a creative person?

In reality, we are meant to share with one another, to give to one another, to receive and pass on God's many good gifts in a variety of ways. God has made us to live interdependently, sharing the gifts He's given us with one another. Maybe today I have words that help you, and maybe you have a gift that helps your neighbor in a way that only you can. And maybe tomorrow, neither one of us feels like we have anything to offer, so we borrow from someone else. It's all from God anyway, and His supply never runs out.

So whether you are sharing from what you consider your own well, or borrowing from someone else's, may you be reminded anew that doing or saying less, or borrowing from someone else, is not a cop-out. Rather, it's a beautiful way to share the grace and goodness of God with each other.

In the spirit of borrowing words, I would like to share a prayer written by Dr. Andy Draycott for the 2020 Lent Project of Biola University. Perhaps you'd like to keep BCS and WCA in mind as you consider these words.

Pray with me...

Father God, by your word, guide our steps, gladden our hearts as we reach toward you. So work by your Spirit to ignite our affections so that we may discern the paths of faithfulness. Praise you for the path taken on our behalf by your Son, Jesus, that we, even in the wilderness of our present travailing, may trust in forgiveness by your grace,


Above: the cover of an album recently created by my good friend Elise Massa, in which she shares many beautiful borrowed words from Scripture and the Book of Common Prayer, all designed to accompany Morning Prayer. Artwork by Brianna Kelly.


Thanks for taking the time to read this blog and pray for Alliance Christian School District! Lord willing, I plan to publish a new blog post weekly on Wednesdays throughout the school year. Feel free to subscribe (at the bottom of this page) if you'd like to be notified each time a new blog post has been published. We also have a prayer team that is always open for new pray-ers to join. If you'd like to learn more, email me at

~ Carrie Warner, ACSD Prayer Team Coordinator

Soli Deo Gloria To God alone be the glory

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