For an Audience of One

I’ve been blogging for over a year now.  It’s not such a big feat, but for me it was the next step I needed to take to flex my writing muscle.  Just when I think I’m finding my voice and feeling more comfortable with my writing, I find myself getting caught up in what others think or what a blog is “supposed” to look like.  Self-doubt can creep in so insidiously.

The truth is that most people don’t follow any hard and fast rules to blogging—unless they want to take their writing seriously.  In today’s publishing industry, blogging is a way to prove to potential publishers that you have a “following” or as Michael Hyatt calls it, a “tribe.”  A large tribe equates into potential book sales and that motivates a publisher to take note of your manuscript.  Of course good writing is also key to getting noticed.

So why am I mentioning this on my blog?  It’s because I feel stuck on how to continue blogging.  In the months preceding the publishing of my story in “Journeys to Mother Love,” I pursued getting a domain name and developing my website.  That was when I realized I needed to brand my name, my image, my site, etc.  I hired Athena Dean from Book Jolt, to help with that process.

When Athena asked me what my passion was and what I wanted to write about, my answer was easy.  I love hearing and seeing how God transforms lives when people learn to trust Him and embrace deep healing.  Evangelism isn’t my gift.  It’s facilitating spiritual growth and encouraging people to walk through their pain to the other side of wholeness.  So we brainstormed on taglines and came up with “Where Healing Turns to Hope”.  (Thank you Athena!  That was worth every penny.)

The only problem now is that I am second guessing if my writing is really conveying that message.  I love the exchange of deep spiritual insights and sharing struggles at a heart level.  I am not embarrassed to share my own painful struggles, doubts or neediness.  The question is how much to share on a public blog.

Don’t be tempted by the allure of an audience.

In finding my voice should I deliberately write for affect or strip my spiritual candor to potentially draw a tribe?  Should I always write deep introspective posts that align with my branding?  “Where Healing Turns to Hope” doesn’t have to imply deep spiritual revelation or intense healing.  It’s about being a light in my words and deeds so that others may see Jesus as the author of healing and hope.

My voice is one of thousands of bloggers who have been redeemed and restored to our true identity in Christ—not perfect, but embracing our brokenness and moving forward one day at a time.  When I start to question my voice, the size of my tribe, my “likes” on Facebook and such, I am letting my pride get the best of me and going against the heart transformation that Christ has done in me.

In my recent period of questioning and doubting the direction of my blog, the Lord has graciously reminded me that “He is enough for me.”  When I look to a tribe for validation of my writing, mistakenly defining that as “fruit”, He gently whispers that “I am the fruit” of His labor.  So with that kind of encouragement to continue blogging, I know that I am really blogging for an audience of One—and I’m very grateful for that.

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6 Comments

  1. Great reminder to us all, Ardis!

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  2. “I love the exchange of deep spiritual insights and sharing struggles at a heart level.” Well said. That’s exactly what I look for from your writing. Your light shares the joys of discovery, growth, and the freedom that ensues.

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  3. Wow, Terry! Thank you for your positive feedback–and for your encouragement for my healing journey.

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  4. You have just revealed the truth I was feeling after I published my first blog post. Thank you for inspiring me. What came to me in my feelings of doubt after turning on the wipers (Read my blog: Driving My Thoughts Around) is, “My thoughts are not my own”, thus the “fruit if the spirit.” Thank you for sharing your thoughts that have now inspired me.

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    • Doubts about our writing and our journey can happen at any time. As you referenced in your blog, we have a choice in what to do with those doubts. Welcome to the blog-o-sphere!

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  • WELCOME to my site!

    I'm an author, writer, speaker, mentor & mom. I've struggled to find my voice all my life as I lived in the shadows of a mother with mental illness. Thankfully that was not the legacy that she handed down to me. It took a lot of recovery and deep healing work to rise above it.

    I am thankful to God for Making Me Bold in the process. Now I use my writing and speaking voice to help others on their journey to turn healing into hope.

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