I threw in the towel. Utterly defeated, I quit. Pretty dramatic huh? Granted it was a bad day. The website for my blog had crashed in the worst way. After working on it for two days, all that could be seen by the viewer was a twisted, kaleidoscope of words and pictures that resembled something like a ransom note or the calling card from a serial killer; but I could not access my admin panel to undo the very tiny, (earth-shattering) change that I had made. It was as if I no longer existed as far as WordPress was concerned.
I can fiddle and figure with a lot…but this was way over my head and my amazing fix-everything-I-mess-up husband wouldn’t be home for hours. Six agonizing HOURS…
I am a bit obsessive, as some of you may know, and the reality of having a ransom/killer note for a website was just too much…
Introspection kicked in.
Maybe the universe is telling me to quit. My site has constant performance glitches. A recent post was [seemingly] not well received. Almost no views and no comments and what-even-is-the-point to put your writing out there if no one reads it? 3 Strikes and you’re out right?
I know it takes time to build a “following”. I know I have to be patient. But it’s still difficult to put time, energy and vulnerability out there and feel like it just swirls around the drain and…flush.
In my defeated state I took time to draw near to God… I listened to a teaching on gratitude and took my ungrateful heart before Him.
Humbled, I began with, “Thank you God for my awesome computer that I get to use to screw up my entire website .” He laughed. We both laughed. I laughed at myself and we began to talk.
Do you want me to quit? Are my motives wrong? I just want to be free of worrying if people read it. Likes, views, comments, subscribes…ugh. Worrying what they think. I want to not care. I just want to write.
He took this opportunity to speak into my identity. “I made you to care. Of course you care. You are passionate, driven and eager to influence people’s hearts for Me.”
I was on the deck outside in the sunshine and glory of the amber and gold that surrounded me in the fall leaves, and I just sat there and cried.
Often we expect to be reprimanded when we bring our “truth” before God… but if we give Him a chance and really listen, He will have something better to say; a higher truth that He’d rather we focus on. It will be good.
As I sat wiping away tears, soaking in the crisp air and Autumn sun; He had more to share with me and realigned my heart in just the way that only He can do. But I still walked away thinking…I’ll just write in a word document and if it’s good I’ll publish. If God says it’s good I’ll publish…
I do tend to be headstrong and have my own ideas about things..it’s possible this causes me to get in the way of God’s plans for my life way more often than I realize. I don’t think He liked my “don’t write” plan. And today quite unexpectedly, I found out that the post that didn’t do so well, impacted someone.
She cried. Twice. She told me it challenged her as a parent and it opened up a conversation with her husband and built connection in an area they hadn’t really talked about before.
Just one person. One family. One marriage. And all my insecure, self-conscious, agonizing over every word, punctuation mark and stupid website glitch is – totally worth it.
She was not overly verbose; there was no ego pumping in what she shared. Just the simple words and encouragement of a friend.
As I reflected on what my friend said and the timing – considering my “quit writing” plan; I felt the Father’s heart reminding me that who I am matters. My experiences and how they’ve affected me and the way I share about them – matters. There is more significance and purpose to my life than I realize. It’s not just about me…hardly at all about me.
And then I remembered all of you. People that I know and those I haven’t even met that may be reading this blog… You matter. Your life matters.
I wrote about that in a post on Facebook in February and I decided to include it at the end of this post as well. I hope that you’ll pause from my story and take a moment to read it while reflecting on your story.
As for me, my wonderful fix-everything-I-mess-up husband came home and fixed my site in 3 minutes. Yes, he rocks.
And so I will write. Some people will read and some won’t. Some will like it and some won’t. Not everything that I write will be great. Can we just get that out there? I have to keep going even when it’s lame. That’s the best way to improve, to just keep going… But this post isn’t really about the writing is it?
Maybe this is really about recognizing the small and simple ways that we disqualify ourselves. The ways we take ourselves out of the running. The little lies that purpose to undermine the very intention and blessing of God available to us.
I think Mr. Rogers said it best:
“If you could only sense how important you are to the lives of those you meet; how important you can be to the people you may never even dream of. There is something of yourself that you leave at every meeting with another person.”
-Mr. [Fred] Rogers
And this is for all of you:
You Matter from Facebook post 02.08.14
My wish for you is to know that you matter. Your life matters. Who you are, your expression of life is so valuable and needed!
From the way you think and see things, to what makes you laugh and how you make others laugh – you add joy to this life!
Thank you. There may be days that you think you have nothing to give, nothing to offer. Just be you. It really is enough.
You being you, fills the gap in the puzzle of life that we’re all living and it just helps to make it complete; you add to the picture. In your strengths, in your weaknesses – there are rich depths for others to partake and learn and enjoy from.
You have a beautiful heart – you’re passionate about so many things! Your passion is contagious and at times even adorable. You’re more lovable than you realize and we all agree on that point.
Sometimes life is hard. Everyone faces hard things at some point. You don’t have to be alone when it happens to you. Your life matters so much to the people around you and none of them want you to face hard things alone.
My wish for you is to know love. Know the love that’s all around you. Know how it wants to embrace you and draw you in. Know the hope of love. Know the strength and challenge of love; love won’t let you settle because love never gives up and love never fails. Love is for you and all about you…because you matter.
be blessed friends! .g