• Dana L. Butler

On Not Feeling A Need To Process And Produce So Quickly

Sometimes I think about life through a “bloggy” filter.  You writers know what I’m talking about… The days when before something is even done happening, I’m writing about it in my head.

Sometimes this happens to my relationship with the Lord too.  It’s something I constantly have to keep in check.

Sarah Markley recently wrote a post entitled “The Pressure of Living Publicly.”  Here’s a quote: “Instead of pondering everything, I feel the need to process everything quickly and then regurgitate it immediately for the public sphere.” If you haven’t noticed, I’ve cut back some lately on the amount that I’m writing.  The Lord has reworked and refined and reordered some things in my heart around the what‘s and why‘s and how‘s of maintaining this blog.  I’m super thankful for His commitment to continually help me realign my priorities, and I love how often He checks my heart on things like where I’m deriving my identity and whether or not HIS affirmation and approval are really all I need to feel valuable. But I still struggle sometimes… on the days when my thoughts go something like this:  I didn’t post anything new yesterday or today and so I really should get SOMEthing out there for tomorrow and hmmm…what might the Lord be saying to me today that I can quickly process and write about and post tomorrow morning?   Woah, RED FLAGS, RED FLAGS!! Wow… reading that train of thought, actually having written it out, it makes my heart sink to the floor.  Thankfully I usually catch myself… or rather, the FATHER usually catches me… quickly when this thought process occurs. And it’s a good thing… because the LAST thing I want, and one of the greatest dangers of having any kind of a blogging “ministry,” is for my relationship with Jesus to become sometimes a means to the end of creating content for my blog.   These are the same dangers inherent in being a song writer or a worship leader or a small group leader or a teacher/pastor or being in any form of public or semi-public ministry at all: 

  1. Our secret place with the Lord can quickly become not really that secret at all.

  2. Our times with Him become a means to the end of “producing” or “ministering” instead of the end of simply, purely KNOWING JESUS.

  3. The things He whispers to our hearts in that place can all-too-easily end up not taking root as deeply in our hearts as they would if we simply PONDERED them for a time instead of so quickly PRODUCING and PUBLICIZING them.

Don’t misunderstand me – I believe much of what the Lord gives us in our times with Him is meant to be shared in time… but there is clearly value inherent in “treasuring and pondering these things in our hearts” like Mary did.

Bill Johnson said something like, “Develop an intimacy with the Lord that’s separate from Him using you in ministry.”

And isn’t that intimacy with Him the deepest desire of my heart?  To be satisfied in nothing and no one BUT Him?  To allow Him to have His way in the deepest places of my heart no matter who’s watching… OR NOT WATCHING?  And if I’m really not deriving my identity illegally from my ability to articulate my heart, or His heart, or from the ways God uses me to minister to others, then shouldn’t I be okay with allowing some bold


in this space

now and then?

Just some thoughts I’ve been pondering for a while… that I’m now sharing.  

Be blessed today, friends, to deeply ponder… and to let His sweet whispers take root in your heart and grow….  

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