Wednesday, June 01, 2011
Five years ago today, FIVE YEARS AGO!, The Next Step was born. For five years people have been reading my mind here, discovering my flaws, hearing way more information than they ever wanted to know about my family.
I started this blog in response to God's nudging. You can read that story by clicking here. I had no idea what I was doing. I only knew I was supposed to do it. I could never have predicted my first post would set the tone for years to come, articulating my goal in this blogging adventure. I want to point people to God. Though I've tried not to make it all about me, I know the nature of the medium brings attention to the writer. I pray you are able to look past me and see God working in an ordinary woman. I hope by reading my thoughts you see how He fits into everyday, ugly, real life.
Over 800 posts later, I still have no idea what I'm doing, but I've discovered we humans are alike in many ways. As I admit to my struggles, others chime in to say I'm not alone, that they struggle too. When I open up about my fears and weaknesses and anxieties, I find others battle the same way. Being transparent and vulnerable gives others permission to do the same and suddenly there is relief among us all. I love that. If the time I spend here helps us relate to each other better and enables us to be who we really are, it is time very well spent.
I know it sounds weird, but sometimes I think I can sense the people who read this blog, even if they've never said anything. They carry a knowing smile. They look at me differently. They react softer to me, like they have a better idea of who I am. It's like they know my demons and how I fight them and have some kind of respect for me, though they have little contact with me in person. Because I put it all out there, they have better understanding. I wish everybody could know that feeling, to be given that benefit of the doubt.
Hmmm, want to start a blog and share your guts? I'd read it!
I would be remiss if I didn't thank you, the person reading these words right now. It baffles me why you come back day after day to read my babbling, but I am grateful for the opportunity to interact with you. I often feel sad I don't get to know you the way you know me. Be assured your thoughtful comments are treasured. They matter. They spur me on. They affirm God's nudging. If this blog has any effect on any lives, you have a huge part in it. Thank you for giving me permission to be who I am and somehow accepting me for it.
I could never have predicted five years ago I would have so much to say, especially since I spend many days staring at a blank screen wondering what in the world I'll talk about. But as I faithfully approach my computer, God faithfully brings the words and the courage to put them out there. So I must thank Him, for not giving me an out, for stretching me and teaching me about trust and discipline, for showing me vulnerability not only opens me up for hurt, but also for authentic, satisfying interaction.
He has been good to me. If you read this blog consistently, I hope you see that. And I hope you see that He is good to you too. Thanks for joining me on this journey.
Soli deo Gloria.
To God be the glory.