Letter writing is a reminder to someone that they are thought of, cared about, and prayed for. It also brings a sweet touch of encouragement. Our words can be a glimmer of hope to someone who is hurting.

You are a letter from Christ … This “letter” is not written with pen and ink, but with the Spirit of the living God. It is not carved on tables of stone, but on human hearts. (2 Corinthians 3:3)


#PenToPaper is a ministry of the heart, because we are the living letters of Jesus, inscribed not with ink, but with the Spirit of the living God. (2 Corinthians 3:3)

God’s love, poured out into us, infuses each word we write in love for the heart of another.

“…be a precious letter from Christ,” wrote Dr. Paul Marquardt, “and take the time to let [someone] know how loved and treasured they are by you, and by the Lord!”

What an encouraging reason to write!



It’s not the length of what you write that matters, but the love you pour into your words. Be honest and authentic. Offer a kind word or an encouraging phrase. Share a favorite quote or Bible verse. Include a short prayer. In short, write the words you’d want to receive.

In 1895, Emily Dickinson wrote, “A Letter is a Joy of Earth,” and she’s right. Putting #PenToPaper is a vital and life-giving ministry of hope to both sender and receiver.


  • increases brain development and cognition
  • makes physical wounds heal faster
  • keeps us focused on the present moment
  • improves sleep
  • elevates mood
  • decreases stress and depression
  • increases creativity and critical thinking
  • builds motor memory
  • improves overall well-being

In his book Intimate Letters on Personal Problems, published in 1914, J. R. Miller wrote:

“… Go on, my dear friend, in your ministry of letter-writing, and let Christ use your pen in this way for his service. God has given you a big heart—a great fountain of love and sympathy and cheer. Let the streams pour out continually in all directions to bless the world. Hundreds and thousands of people need encouragement and uplifting. You will scarcely meet one man or one woman … whom you cannot make a little stronger or braver—by saying the right word.”

Why not pick up your pen today and pour out a little love, reminding one precious person that they are not alone – that they are thought of, cared about, and prayed for? Your words just might make them a little stronger today or a little braver tonight.



Letters don’t need to be long or beautifully written to make a difference. Just a few words written in love can change the trajectory of someone’s day.



  • A short prayer
  • A favorite Bible verse
  • What your typical day is like
  • An encouraging quote
  • A story of how God has comforted you
  • Your favorite hymn or worship song
  • What you’re reading or learning about right now
  • Your favorite holiday – describe your favorite sights, sounds, smells, tastes, or memory of that holiday
  • Your favorite part of the day or season of the year, and why
  • What you enjoy most about your hometown
  • Your biggest challenge right now
  • Something you’d like to do or a hobby you’d like to take up
  • What made you laugh this week



And if you honestly don’t know what to say, if you haven’t walked a mile in someone’s shoes, it’s okay to write that too. This letter from Pastor John Piper to the parents of a baby born blind is a beautiful example: Words of Hope for a Baby Born Blind.

Kind words are like honey—sweet to the soul and healthy for the body. (Proverbs 16:24)


There are many good places, but the best is in prayer. Ask God who you could encourage with a note or letter today. When He prompts, start writing.

Need a few ideas? Here are some of our favorites:



Strengthen relationships with loved ones as you share family news and favorite memories, write about hopes and dreams, pray for one another, and share encouraging Scripture.



Today might be the perfect day to write a love letter to your spouse.

Here are a few quick tips:

  • Share how your spouse has touched your heart.
  • Share what you admire about your spouse.
  • Reaffirm your love and commitment. These are words we can never say enough.
  • Share a favorite memory about your spouse.
  • Write about how a favorite song, quote, movie or food reminds you of your spouse.
  • Write about a funny moment that has turned into a favorite memory.
  • Close with words that mean something to both of you. If you don’t have a phrase you use, maybe today, with this letter, is the day to begin.



Ask your pastor if there is someone you could encourage with a note. Someone who is:

  • Homebound
  • Recovering from surgery
  • Hospitalized
  • Ill
  • Celebrating a birth or adoption
  • Grieving a loss
  • Lonely or depressed

We need each other. Without even one of us, the Body of Christ is incomplete.



You can write to deployed and active duty military members, new recruits, wounded warriors, caregivers, veterans, and families of the fallen through an organization like Operation We Are Here that:

  • offers practical insights about how to support and encourage those in the military community
  • provides free thank you cards to download, print, and share
  • offers tips on writing letters to deployed military
  • provides free downloads for kids (e.g., coloring pages) to send to deployed military



What about writing to persecuted Christians around the world, reminding them that they are not alone or forgotten? Let them know that someone cares and is praying through organizations like Open Doors USA?



To Love Ourselves was founded to invite women into a Christ-centered community that builds each other up and encourages collaboration. “We believe that we’re all in this big, beautiful world together, and the best thing we can do is pour into one another.”



Love for the Elderly – Many nursing home residents are lonely, having few local relatives who care for, look after, or love them. Your letter could change that. Founded by Jacob Cramer when he was just thirteen, Love for the Elderly is a five-year-old non-profit organization. It is dedicated to enriching the lives of seniors with kindness and joy.

Interested in connecting locally? Call a local nursing home and let them know you’re interested in sending a card or letter to someone who seems lonely or down. They’ll be able to get you started.



Quick Tips:

  • Share stories about God’s love and provision, especially in the small things and poignant moments.
  • Ask questions about what they’re learning. Share what you’re learning.
  • Share your story — and ask them about theirs.
  • Remind missionaries that they are loved and that the work they do is needed and appreciated. This helps especially when times are difficult.
  • Share fun news  and photos (ie, engagements, weddings, new babies, adoptions)
  • Include the hard news, too (ie, losses, illnesses, deaths)



Braid MissionMany foster children never receive holiday, birthday, or “just because” cards. Braid Mission makes sure they do. Founders Rebecca Edwards and Christopher Chase set out to create a new community built around the mission of the foster system. Throughout the year, they send birthday cards to kids ages 6-16, as well as encouragement cards to staff and social workers.



Do you know a current college student, niece or nephew, a friend’s, neighbor’s or co-worker’s child, or someone from church? Writing to a college student can be such a blessing. Make it fun! Include local news, an update from the neighborhood, a joke, or a memory from your own college days. Then you could end with a few words of Scripture and a prayer for them. These can be a stressful days for a college student. Knowing someone is thinking about and praying for them can make a big difference, especially for those who are far from home.



Thank someone who has made a difference in your life: a loved one, pastor, doctor, nurse, teacher, mail carrier, delivery person, neighbor, friend, local business owner, dog groomer, vet, hair stylist, a server at your favorite restaurant, a checker or bagger at your food store, etc. Your note will likely mean more to them than you know.



Hannah Brencher founded The World Needs More Love Letters after leaving more than 400 handwritten notes around New York City for strangers to find. The envelopes simply said, “If you find this letter, it’s for you.” Since 2011, letters have been found in 50 states, 73 countries, and on 100 college campuses. More than 250,000 letters have been delivered to people in need across the world.

Happy Bubbles
Letter writing? Does anyone still do that? Letter writing is so powerful because it’s so uncommon. Don’t like letter writing? Can’t do cursive? Send an email or a text. Connect to people with words—like [Apostle] Paul and [Martin] Luther did. Bob Kellemen, Faith Bible Seminary


#PenToPaper is a powerful way to encourage one another, offer hope, and let a friend or loved one know they are prayed for, cared about, and loved.

  • Begin with prayer. Ask God who needs a note of encouragement today.
  • Check out our Store for beautiful flat cards. Service in a Box has everything you need to begin your own ministry of letter writing.
  • Write a short prayer or choose one from our free printables.
  • Include a favorite quote or Bible verse.
  • Tuck a free printable into your note, like Suffering & Joy, Story Matters, or You Are. Visit our Printables page. There are many to choose from!
  • What matters most is that you share your heart, for “You are a letter from Christ.” 2 Corinthians 3:3 Your words carry His love.
Happy Bubbles
{I got mine [#PenToPaper packet] earlier this week. They are beautiful and meaningful! Thanks so much, Chronic Joy!!
Dee Richards
Dallas Center, IA
Dee Richards
{Thank you so much for the “snail mail”. What fun to get the collection of cards in my mailbox the other day. Truly an encouragement. Author of Searching for Sea Glass: Journeying with God Through Chronic Illness 30 Devotions.
Kara Plett
Alberta, Canada
Kara Plett
{I was so incredibly touched when my daughter opened her #PenToPaper gift and handwritten encouragement card from Chronic Joy. When they said they wanted to encourage young adults living with chronic illness, I was super impressed … and so grateful when they included my daughter. Young women and men need to hear others care about them as they navigate the very disheartening struggles of chronic illness. My daughter just loved this and felt “seen” and cared about as soon as she opened it to her surprise.
Heather M.
Columbia, MO
Chronic Joy Ribbon
{I was going through a hard time a couple of days ago and your letters and cards came in the mail. The words were a balm to my heart and spoke to me where I was at. Thank you for your ministry. It makes a difference.
Lori L.
San Angelo, TX
Chronic Joy Ribbon
{As someone with chronic illness, I am very encouraged by the mailings from Chronic Joy. The information included in each mailing is always helpful and inspirational, and I love receiving the beautiful note cards on which I can write a special message of encouragement and pass on to others. The Chronic Joy team does an amazing job of connecting faith and Scripture with great resources that will bless all who receive these wonderful #PenToPaper gifts.
Emerson M.
Columbia, MO
Emerson Mertens
{I have started sending #PenToPaper notes as the Lord lays people on my heart. My goal is to send one every morning Monday through Friday. Thank you for ALL of the work you put in…
Barbara Coleman
Bowie, MD
Barbara Coleman
{AMAZING! I received the mail packet and am grateful and inspired by the amazing ways you - Chronic Joy - are inspired to reach out!  Thank you.
Julie S.
Wauwatosa, WI
Julie Sheridan-Smith
{Thank for the cards and info you sent me to Finland. I received them yesterday just before we had visitors. I shared stories from Chronic Joy®, especially about Bettie G. I felt the lady needed some encouragement, so I have a card and the info you sent. They were returning home to Sweden. Their summer cottage is in Finland. Thank you for all you do for all of us!
Lisa E.
Kaskinen, Finland
Lisa Enqvist
{Mine [#PenToPaper packet] has been duly received this week and greatly appreciated! Thank you so much, Chronic Joy, for sending out these small packages of encouragement, inspiration and hope. They are lovely soul food. A treat to receive and pass on to others as well!
Joy Lenton
Norwich, Norfolk U.K.
Joy Lenton
{As a young person dealing with with many chronic illnesses, it can be all too easy to feel isolated. I'm so grateful for Chronic Joy reminding me I'm not alone at all. Scrolling the Prayer Pond, using the Printables, and seeing the daily social media posts all encourage me so much. I especially love the #PenToPaper program. I know how much fun it is to receive a letter or postcard when I'm not able to get out much, and #PenToPaper makes it easy to share the love with others!
Hailey H.
Cumming, GA
Hailey Hudson
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Encouraging Snail Mail

I love snail mail. Who doesn’t love opening their mailbox and finding something besides a bill or flyer? So, I try to mail cards to people for birthdays, new babies, or weddings, but I also want to send them “just because.”


"Sometimes I get stalled in sending a card because I’m not sure what to write on the inside – I want to encourage or bring a smile to the recipient but can’t find the words." Kara Plett

The Legacy of You Get Mail

The legacy of my grandmother’s intentional kindness lives on as Chronic Joy extends birthday greetings and more with You Get Mail.


“Every envelope in Chronic Joy’s You Get Mail program is a touchstone of hope and an act of intentional kindness and love right from our hearts.” Pamela Piquette
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Books We Love • #PenToPaper

PenToPaper-Note Starters for Every Day

#PenToPaper: Note Starters for Every Day

This book is brimming with inspiration and is chock-full of note starters. Find words to express compassion, gratitude, celebration, grief, and laughter. Discover fun ways to write to a special child in your life. You will even spot note-starters for difficult relationships. You’ll turn to this faith-filled and thoughtfully curated resource again and again!

Who will you write to today?


Buy from Amazon

Jesus is the Question: The 307 Questions Jesus Asked and the 3 He Answered

If You Find This Letter: My Journey to Find Purpose Through Hundreds of Letters to Strangers

Hannah Brencher

A heartwarming memoir of love and faith from Hannah Brencher, who has dedicated her life to showing total strangers that they are not alone in the world. There is something about receiving a handwritten note that is so powerful in today’s digital era.

Buy from Amazon


Letters of C. S. Lewis

C. S. Lewis

A repackaged edition of the revered author’s collection of personal letters (a curated selection of the best of his correspondence with family, friends, and fans at various stages in his life, from his youth to the weeks before his death), these letters illuminate Lewis’s thoughts on God, humanity, nature, and creativity. In this captivating collection, discover details about Lewis’s conversion to Christianity as well as his philosophical thoughts on spirituality and personal faith.

Buy from Amazon

Friends for the Journey

Madeleine L’Engle and Luci Shaw

Born of a friendship spanning a quarter of a century, Madeleine L’Engle and Luci Shaw’s Friends for the Journey considers the golden quality of deep and lasting friendships, showing that the common ground of love for God transcends even separation.

Buy from Amazon

The Amazon buttons are affiliate links, which means if you click on the link and purchase the item, Chronic Joy will receive an affiliate commission.

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Free Printable Stationery

Touch of Kindness Stationery


Sharing Life  Discovering Hope Stationery


Teen & YA Stationery


CJ Star Stationery

Sonshine Squad Stationery

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