The Conclusion paragraph is a place where I see many writers struggling. Not to sound mean, but sometimes the conclusion sounds…lame. What do I mean by that? It sounds rushed and like the writer ran out of steam.
Let’s look at some guidelines for writing a Conclusion of a devotion, blog post, or chapter.
In my mom’s situation, I have seen how quickly my thoughts can turn to the problems I don’t know how to solve. I am learning, however, to turn from these thoughts by thanking God for all the ways He has been faithful in the past and all the ways I see His faithfulness in the present circumstances. I am learning to ask Him for wisdom in every detail. And I am setting my eyes on Him as I wait for His answers.
What problems in your life seem unsolvable or unanswerable? Follow King Jehoshaphat’s example by acknowledging you don’t have the answers. This week take time to name what’s keeping you anxious. For each anxious thought, you might want to pray something like this: Lord, I don’t know what to do about this job situation, but my eyes are on You. And then repeat for each concern. Let these prayers calm your anxious thoughts while increasing your faith in God.
Guidelines for the Conclusion:
One Paragraph or Several Short Paragraphs
Your Conclusion length may vary from one paragraph to several. How many paragraphs you use may be determined by the overall word count.
Refer to the Main Point
Emphasize the main point of your writing. Remind your reader what’s important so she’ll remember it. This is not the place to introduce a brand-new idea, other than specific application points or possibly looking ahead to the next chapter.
Tie Back into the Introduction
If you told a story in your Introduction, an effective method to use in your Conclusion is to tie back to that story, like I did in my sample.
Provide a Point of Application
You might want to give your reader a specific suggestion for a way to apply the principles to her life. You want application points to be specific and immediate or very soon.
I didn’t use this method in my sample Conclusion because it was for a stand-alone devotion, but one more guideline: refer to what’s coming in the next chapter.
Hope this helps!
Thank you for being here!
This blog post is an excerpt from my workbook, How to Write a Devotion: Workbook with Steps to Write a Devotion and Devotional Blog Post.
Here’s what one writer said about this workbook:
How to Write a Devotion: Workbook with Steps to Create a Devotion or Devotional Blog Post is a powerful resource that catapults the writer to not only think about the message they would like to convey, but most importantly, address the needs of their readers in writing the devotional without being preachy.
I appreciate when Chitwood wrote: “I want my reader to experience that feeling of, We’re in this together. I’ve been in those circumstances, facing that problem too.” Here, having this line of thinking when writing a devotional, enables the reader to connect with the writer—and most importantly with the LORD.
Thank you Melanie Chitwood for this priceless resource! Well done!