Turning Lockdowns into Opportunities

By Tom Castor | May 6, 2020 |

It has been a long time since the world has seen a pandemic. And this one has seen an unprecedented response by people and nations around the globe. For us, it has meant following the “stay-at-home” protocols as recommended by governors and health professionals. While that has meant cancelling trips overseas and delaying conferences with churches in North America, it has had some upsides.

One of the unexpected results of the “lockdown” is the time it provides for writing. We are in the midst of no less than seven projects at the moment, but the ones that have lagged behind are the ones that involve research and writing new materials. This detour has made a bit of extra time available and, so far, we have been able to put it to good use. 

One of the deadlines that we are chasing is the completion of articles that expand on and complement the questions and answers in our little catechism, Simple Truths for the New Believer.  Once these are completed, we will send them out for assessment and field-testing. When those results are in and the appropriate edits are made, we will post all of the essays on our A Simple Word site. Then we will have all of the posts translated into French. While this is happening, we will write reading comprehension questions that will allow a reader to test how well they have understood the material. Once the question sets are completed, we will integrate them into our site using a new Learning Management System. Eventually, these lessons will be available in both the French and English versions of our sites (www.asimpleword.org  and www.véritésimple.org ).

To give you a sense of how these essays look, here is a selection from one of them. Remember, our goal is to write in a way that allows our material to be readable to the widest English audience. As with all of our writing, this portion of the writing registers at a reading level of under grade 4 and a readability score of 90+. Take a look.

If I go to another country, I need to learn the laws there. The laws tell me what is right and wrong. They also tell me something about the people who made those laws. They tell me what they think is important. The laws tell me what the people value. They tell me what they think I should do to be a good citizen.

Why did God give us the Ten Commands? What do the commands show us? 

First, the laws of God show us what God is like. They tell me about the God who made those laws. They tell me what God loves. They tell me what he hates. The commands tell me that God wants people to love him. And he wants people to care for each other. God’s laws are wise because God is wise. His laws are good because he is good. God’s laws can be trusted because God always keeps his promises. His laws are true because he always tells the truth. 

The commands also help us know how to show our love to God. Jesus said, ‘If you love me, keep my commandments.’ When we look at the Ten Commands, we learn what pleases God. We also learn what does not please him. If we love God, we will want to do the things that please him. We show our love for him when we do what he commands.

To read the entire article (and others like it), click HERE.

Tom Castor

Thomas Castor, founder of Clear and Simple Media Group, is a seasoned writer and communicator who has been delivering content with clarity and simplicity for 30 years.