To the blogger who feels as if no one is listening

I know you write from a pure heart. I know that when you put words on paper, you dig down deep. You turn your soul inside out to try to express the depths of all that you feel, of all that you see. You hold nothing back.

And yet the blog numbers don’t follow.

You have a precious relationship with your God. You’ve learned that He really is all that He claims to be. That if you listen, you will hear Him. If you watch, you will see Him. And when you write, your greatest goal is to faithfully reproduce the way you experienced Him, the way He revealed Himself. And you now understand the meaning of grace, because you don’t deserve such a beautiful thing. Because you didn’t earn it. Because you don’t know how you lucked into finding something so completely above and beyond anything you ever imagined it could be.

And yet the blog numbers don’t follow.

People respond to your posts. You get emails requesting prayer, and you lift the requests up to God, marveling at the compassion and kindness of a God who hears their needs. Who placed these people into your life. The One who forged instantaneous, deep, lasting relationships with people you never would have had reason to meet otherwise.

And yet. The blog numbers don’t follow.

So you start to wonder. Why are you writing? Are you still writing from a purity of heart? From a singular desire to encourage other people to look for Him? To reach for Him? To tell people that it’s OK to have questions, to show them that even if their experience looks different than yours, it’s no less real? No less fulfilling?

Because the blog numbers just aren’t there. And after months of trying to hold up your end of the bargain, of working to promote yourself and build your platform and do all the things publishers ask, you’re discouraged. So you start asking a new question.

What’s the worst thing that can happen if the blog numbers don’t follow?

Do numbers change the reasons why you began writing? Do they negate the insights you’ve found as you struggled through doubts and loss and longing? Do they invalidate the fact that it is through writing, through words, that your perception of the Almighty has grown, expanded, rooted itself deeply, built your faith, strengthened your heart, and enlightened your world?

And you know. You know you wouldn’t change a thing. You know that you would still write, even if no one else ever listens. You know that you write for the sheer love of writing. You write because God gave you this sweet gift of expression and He gave you something to say. You say it for Him. Because He is there, listening. And you know that He sees what is done in secret. He knows your heart.

And so you ask God for help. You ask Him to change your heart, to keep you on the right track. To purify your motivations. To help you stop watching numbers and instead watch Him.

Because in God’s economy, our numbers mean nothing. Only one matters, the highest of all possible measures—the number One. The One who inspires it all.

And you know it’s too late to stop now. So you close your eyes. Direct your thoughts towards God. Still your heart, slow your breathing. Wipe your eyes.

And you write. You write and you write and you write. And you know that you’re not alone. That you’ve never been alone. You know you’re doing exactly what He made you to do.

And as you write, your heart soars, reaching toward the heavens. Toward the God that brought you here. Toward the God that lets you do this.

And you find that it’s enough.

It’s so much more than enough.

Because the numbers are nothing. But the God you’re writing for? He’s everything.

2 Responses to “To the blogger who feels as if no one is listening”

  1. Yup. That’s me. I first started blogging simply because I had so much to say and nowhere to say it. I wasn’t even really sure what a blog was. A small group of women encouraged me and said that they would all read it. I added a few close friends to the list. Every day, God downloaded material. Every day I gleaned some lesson from something. most of the time I didnt really know what I was doing, but I felt such joy and I felt so close to God! Sometimes I wrote a whole week’s worth of posts I had so much in my head. Then I started wanting more. And I learned about linkup parties, where I met other bloggers. It opened up a whole new world. And I started getting jealous that everyone seemed to have a book and I didn’t. And I looked at their numbers and felt jealous all over. I still don’t have a book and I still don’t have the numbers, but I’ve gotten to know some of these other bloggers, albeit not IRL. They are sweet ladies. Some I would definitely be friends with IRL. It is so easy to lose sight of our true purpose and reason for writing. I long for those beginning days when I was so excited to watch God wirking all around me, and I didn’t even know or care about numbers…the days of innocence. Pure delight. There is a reason we are told we should not despise small beginnings…that is where the joy is born. BTW, Kelly, I read every one of your posts! And I can’t wait to read your book!

    • Thanks, Mary. I guess I just wanted to remind myself why I write, and remember not to get hung up on numbers. If God wants to use anything I say to touch someone else, He will, no matter how many subscribers I have… and if He doesn’t, that’s OK too. I too have been so blessed by the people I’ve “met” through blogging. And from the sheer joy of writing :-).

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