Rachel Hauck

Best-selling author and award winning author Rachel Hauck lives in central Florida with her husband and loving pets. She earned a B.A. degree in Journalism from Ohio State University and spent seventeen years in the corporate software world before leaving to write full time. Rachel loves to teach and mentor writers.

She is a Book Therapist at www.MyBookTherapy.com, a daily craft blog and community for writers. Rachel is the past president of American Christian Fiction Writers and now servers on the Advisor Board. Visit her blog and web site at www.rachelhauck.com.

Dodging Raindrops

Be a Voice Not an Echo

I’m taking a break from social media this summer. I’m not Twittering. I’m on only Facebook to see family pictures or cheer on a writer who submitted a manuscript! But I don’t feel compelled to join any conversation. Or begin any myself.

Sometime in May, I sensed I was cyber shouting, Listen to me! No matter how profound, or wise, witty or chatty I tried to be, the response felt minimal.

So, really, just who was I talking to? No one and everyone? That’s hard to reckon.

For a long time I’ve have it in my heart to be a Voice and not an Echo. An echo is merely repeating what’s already been said. A Voice speaks something fresh with a clear sound.

A friend of mine is an Echo. She likes to pass on tidbits of information, news, facts, and ideas like they are her own, but she’s only parroting what she heard another say. The words are weak, without authority or life.

So much of what we do in society, in the church, in the marketplace echo what others are saying. We mean well. Good information is worth passing on. But when it becomes form without substance, we are merely filling the air with idle chatter. And Jesus says we’ll answer for our all of our words.

The media is notorious for picking up a sound bite and repeating it without digging for the truth.

What’s an Echo? Saying what’s already being said. Doing something that’s already being done. Stating the obvious.

Statistics claim 50 percent of all marriages end in divorce. So one out of two children is from a divorced family. Abuse is rampant. Premarital sex has reached the junior high age. Woundedness abounds.

Hurt and wounded people know they are in pain. What they need to hear is a clear, distinct Voice of hope and healing. How do they move beyond their pasts or circumstances to joy and peace? To the hope of Jesus?

Echoes are empty words. Echoes fade. Echoes disappear. Echoes leave nothing enduring on the heart. Echoes draw attention to ourselves.

Voices endure. Voices are words with substance. Voices leave an imprint on the human heart. Voices draw attention to Jesus.

Think of a statement someone made that lives in you to this day. The lingering words came from a Voice not an Echo.

The first time I heard the statement “You are God’s favorite one,” my heart exploded. “Really?” The truth of the statement created it’s own echo, and as I began to understand the truth, it changed me.

A friend of mine, Stuart, was praying for a woman and sensed by the Spirit she struggled with depression. He was about to speak out her condition when the Lord whispered, “She knows she is depressed. If you tell her that, she’ll feel vulnerable and exposed. Tell her I want to give her joy.”

Telling her she was depressed would’ve been an Echo. Telling her God wanted to give her joy was a Voice.

Echoes cause us to look inward and speak of where we’ve been and where we are and offer momentary hope.

Voices cause us to lift up and look outside ourselves. Voices draw out our destiny, speak of who we are to become and give us tools to run the race.

With so much noise in the world today, how do we become a Voice and not an Echo?

1. Take a season to just “be.” Be still. Shut off outside echoes from the media and Internet. Perhaps back away from office chatter and complaining. Turn down life’s volume.

2. Believe you can hear God. When several women won political primaries, I was surprised to tear up at the news and hear God speak to me about it.

3. Listen and pray. I hear a lot of things that make no sense to me yet others are repeating it. Other times, I hear things that so resonate with my heart, I know it’s something real. I pray over it.

4. Don’t be afraid to say the hard things. Speak the truth in love and compassion. The story of the boy and the king with no clothes is timeless. And relevant.

5. Less is more. It’s so easy to get into a conversation and want to share everything we’ve learned, but sometimes we need to wait, hold back, and release our words at the right God moment. Ah, such restraint! (I don’t have it yet, but I’m working on it. I’d rather impact dozens than none. If I speak to soon, my words fall to the ground.)

How about you? Do you want to be a Voice not an Echo? What a great sound the Bride of Christ makes when she’s speaking from God’s heart and not her own.


Love Starts With Elle