BCM Spotlight Blog

Characterization

BY REV. CORY L. KEMP |

How do script writers imagine people who inhabit their stories?

While reading a blog post about script writing, I found it interesting that the author shared an important lesson he had learned about creating characters from Aaron Sorkin. Known for many projects, including the television series The West Wing, Sorkin had this to say about characterization: “What your character does reveals who they are. What they say reveals who they see themselves as.”

Perhaps the same could be said for those of us living in the real world.

What I hear in Sorkin’s words is not so much that our actions speak louder than our words, but that each gives valuable, usable information from which we can learn, grow and transform.

Photo courtesy of Jakob Owens on Unsplash.

What do your actions reveal about you?

I invite you to take a few moments and stay with that question, without judgment, considering what you do through a usual day.  If you like, jot some of these down, seeing what you see, again, without judgment.  How do you feel about what you are seeing?  Are you comfortable, happy, or maybe confused or surprised?  Giving even a few moments a day to paying attention to your actions can literally be life-changing.  You may make no changes in your daily routine, but you will notice more about how the pieces come together to create the context of each day.  What will your actions create through you today?

How does what you say reveal how you see yourself?

Photo courtesy of Taylor Smith on Unsplash.

I’d like to invite you again to take a few moments and stay with this question, without judgment, considering your thoughts and spoken words through a usual day.  If you like, jot some of these down, seeing what you see, again, without judgment.  How do you feel about what you are seeing?  Are you comfortable, happy, confident?  Are you confused, surprised, wary?  Giving even a few moments a day to paying attention to your thoughts and spoken words can literally be life-changing.  You may make no changes in how your see or hear yourself, but you will notice more about how your language comes together to create the context of each day.  What will your words create through you today?

More so, particularly paying attention to what your actions and words reveal to you about yourself, as a Christian, can bring you to a sacred place you may not have expected was so near, so accessible, so ready to be explored.

What does how you live your faith, in both your actions and words, reveal to you?

I’d like to invite you again to take a few moments and stay with this question, without judgment, considering your faith as actions and words through a usual day.  If you like, jot some of these down, seeing what you see, again, without judgment.  How do you feel about what you are seeing?  Are you comfortable, humbled, curious?  Are you confused, irritated, wary?  Giving even a few moments a day to paying attention to your faith in actions and words can literally be life-changing.  You may make no changes in how you act, how you see or hear yourself, but you will notice more about how your actions and words combined create the context of each day.  What will your faith create through you today?

You possess incredible power to shape your own life, to serve God with everything that you are called to be.  “Then Jesus said to those who had believed in him, ‘If you continue in my word, you are truly my disciples;  and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free.” ~ John 8: 31-32.


About the Author

Photo of The Rev. Cory L. Kemp.

Photo courtesy of The Rev. Cory L. Kemp.

The Rev. Cory L. Kemp is founder and faith mentor with Broad Plains Faith Coaching. Cory, employing her signature Handcrafted Faith program, supports ordained and lay women leaders in visualizing, understanding and strengthening their beliefs, so that they may know, love and serve God and their communities with generosity, wisdom, and joy.


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