• Dana L. Butler

How the Gospel Changes Our Experience of the Blogosphere <br> {What I’ve Learned in 1 Year of

Hiya friends!  Introducing Part 1 of my series: What I’ve Learned in 1 Year of {serious} Blogging.  I’m excited today to share it with you:


 I was reading Ann Voskamp’s blog the other day.

Ann Voskamp.

The bestselling Christian author.

The precious woman whose words tend to pour like warm oil over my heart and touch places inside of me that I didn’t even know were there, and I’m probably the 100 millionth person to experience Jesus that way through her writing.

The woman to whom it was oh-so-easy to compare myself when I started this whole blogging/writing journey.

Easy to measure my writing against hers.

[Or my experience of God against hers?]

To label myself:

Not enough.

Inferior.

Less capable.

Less successful.

But as I read her words a few days ago, I found myself deeply receiving from the Holy Spirit through them.  God moved sweetly on my heart and I was utterly disarmed by His whisper, His presence inside me.

Why?

Why were all my walls of comparison knocked right to the ground as I read?  Why was I able to receive so intimately from the Lord while reading her words?

Because friend, I’ve learned something about Ann Voskamp:

I’m not her.

AND?  I don’t have to try to be.

Because in trying to be- or look, or write- like anyone else, I’m grasping to find my identity, my value, in a source other than the Father.

Zero Bearing On Our Value

Everything about me is unique.  My personality.  My writing voice.  My experience of God.  My heart for people.

God desires to uniquely give expression to His heart through the uniqueness of how He’s created me.

And how He’s created you, friend.

And the question of whether your words are meant to impact 4 people or 400 or 4 billion has absolutely zero bearing on your value.

As a writer.

As a woman.

As a human being.

See-  Jesus’ blood has spoken value over you, and opinions and  numbers can’t refute your identity in light of the gospel.

God says of you, “This is my beloved daughter.  She’s worth the blood of My Son.”

Woah.

Worth the blood of His Son.  

Really.

Priceless.  Precious.  Ransomed.  Worth fighting for.  Beautiful.  Made righteous, holy, clean before God.  Embraced in all your darkest places.  In all your failure.  In all your shame.  LOVED.  Desired.

[Let those words sink in for a minute.  Really.  Maybe even close your eyes and sit before the Lord for a second and ask Him to cause those things to penetrate the deep places of your heart.  Your heart.  Not just your mind.]

This is your Gospel identity, friend.  These are the truths spoken over you by the blood of Jesus.  By the heart of the Father.

Do you get that!?  

Do WE get that?

Because the more deeply our hearts are penetrated by the revelation of our identity in light of the Gospel, the more we’re transformed from the inside, out.

And nothing besides God’s truths spoken over us will ever define us again.

Our identity won’t be shaken.

Not by the number of people on our email lists.

Not by the size of our readership.

Not by the number of comments on our blog posts.

None of it.

The Gospel Changes Everything [no, for real. it does!]

This revelation, if we really get it, will release us to genuinely enjoy one another and humbly receive from Jesus through each other’s writing.

No comparison.  No political ladder-climbing.  No envy.

No walls.

Friend, do you get what this could do for our friendships with each other?

What about what it could do for our ability to genuinely, confidently be who we are- in our writing and in our lives- instead of wanting to be someone else?

For our ability to love. well?

This is life-changing stuff, guys.

The Gospel (and the truth of our identity in light of it) changes absolutely everything.  

Down to the very words we hammer out onto our computer screens.

Down to the way we read and receive others’ words.

Down to the way we engage in friendships- both real life and online.

Let me be clear now on one thing: At a heart level, I’m still learning these truths.  This stuff is so real to me, and yet the practical reality of it is still making its way into all my deep, dark corners.

I’m still in process.  Always will be.

But this I know: As I sit before Him, set my heart before Him, He roots me and grounds me in His love and I am increasingly free and confident to just. be. me.

And to let you be you.

And to enjoy all of it.

To live full steam ahead- free from measuring myself against you, or measuring you against me.

Free to engage in this mutual exchange of wisdom and life and friendship that this whole Christian “blogosphere” thing, [not to mention this Christian LIFE thing], is supposed to be about, anyway.

Right?

Living secure in our Gospel identity sets us free to really live.  

Extravagantly giving and receiving Christ, through each other.  No measuring.  No judging.  No comparison.

Just crazy freedom and confidence.

I’m all about living [and writing, and reading] like that.

Ya know?

___________________

{If this has resonated with you, moved your heart, made you think- why not share it?}

{Your thoughts are always invited.  C’mon over if you’d like to comment.  Or browse.  Or blog-stalk.  You’re always welcome.}

{Crazy thing – Dawn Camp’s post today over at (in)Courage addresses this topic so eloquently.  Why not hop over and check it out?}

{Care to link through to Part 2 of this series?  You can find it here: Regarding Big Dreams and Heart-Priorities}

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