It has been months since I’ve posted anything on this blog. Not because I couldn’t think of anything to say — that’s rarely a problem for me — but because some sly and crafty hackers took over my site last spring and started redirecting all my traffic elsewhere. Arggh!
So I took a break.
Visitors couldn’t read anything I’d written, anyway. They might spot a pin or tweet or update to let them know I’d posted something new, but when they tried to click through and read the article, they were re-routed to a spam site.
That was disheartening, to say the least.
Undoing the Damage
Yet God is faithful. With lots of help through lots of prayer over lots of time, we finally ousted those lazy cyber-thieves, scrubbed the site clean, and tightened security so that — in the final analysis — my blog is now better, faster, and safer than ever before.
But it was a long, painstaking process.
I’ve always viewed my writing, first and foremost, as a ministry. This blog has allowed me to reach into the homes of millions of people from all over the world, not only to share my heart with them, but to point them to Jesus. This awesome privilege carries with it a responsibility I don’t take lightly.
That’s why I bathe my blog in prayer and try to back up so much of what I write with supporting Scriptures.
Ann Voskamp calls this upside-down blogging and reminds us that “every great victory begins on the knees.”
My husband echoes that sentiment. “If the Lord is in it,” Doug often tells me, “He can bless your blog without your burning the candle at both ends. If not, then all your work is in vain, anyway, because nobody will ever read it.”
Praying for God’s Guidance & Blessing
Do you know what? My husband is absolutely right. It’s only by God’s blessing that any of our endeavors meet with success, which is why God deserves all the glory when that happens.
- God gives us life, and we should use that gift to glorify Him.
- God gives us the Bible, and it should undergird everything we do.
- God gives us Jesus, and we should do our best to point others to Him.
- God gives us natural abilities, and we should use our talents to further His kingdom.
- God gives us mentors, and we should learn all we can from their successes and failures.
So that is where this blog is coming from. If you’re into blogging, too, I recommend you begin with prayer, as well.
To facilitate this, I offer you a 31-Day Blogger’s Prayer Guide. It was originally intended for bloggers, but, as you can see, the prayers are appropriate for speakers, teachers, and writers of any vein.
In fact, even our normal, everyday conversations would benefit from these same Scriptural principles. So I invite you to pray along with me:
A Blogger’s Prayer
Lord, may everything I write (or say)…
tell the truth.
Do a little fact-checking before you hit the send or publish button. Make certain what you’re about to share is true. “Truthful lips will be established forever.” (Proverbs 12:19)
reach those who need to hear.
Your posts don’t have to be read by the masses to be successful. If your words can encourage one person who is weary or comfort one who is grieving or challenge one who has grown complacent, that should be enough. “He who has ears to hear, let him hear.” (Luke 14:35)
Those of us who claim the name of Christ have a responsibility not only to glorify Him in all we do, but to accurately represent Him to the world around us. “Whether then you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.” (1 Corinthians 10:31)
be seasoned with grace.
We live in a society that doesn’t seem to give much thought to speaking graciously. Yet this should be just one more trait that sets Christians apart. “Let your speech always be with grace…so you will know how to respond.” (Colossians 4:6)
There are enough people in the world trying to tear others down. Let your words offer hope and encouragement, instead. “Encourage one another & build up one another, just as you are doing.” (1 Thessalonians 5:11)
point others to Christ.
Not only is Jesus the way, the truth, and the life, but He is our best and only hope. “I decided to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ & Him crucified.” (1 Corinthians 2:2)
reflect Your love.
Love should be the distinguishing mark the Christian’s life: both love for others and love for God. “May the Lord direct your hearts into God’s love and Christ’s perseverance.” (2 Thessalonians 3:5)
Put yourself in others’ shoes and try to see things from their perspective. “…be like-minded, be sympathetic, love one another, be compassionate & humble.” (1 Peter 3:8)
be rooted in Your word.
We need to be well-versed in Scripture. Memorize it, meditate on it, and let it sink into your innermost being. “Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom…” (Colossians 3:16)
be full of wisdom.
God promises to grant wisdom to all who ask, so make that request boldly and often. “The heart of the wise teaches his mouth and adds persuasiveness to his lips.” (Proverbs 16:23)
edify those who read it.
We should use all our gifts — including our writing ability — to build up and better those around us. “So then, let us pursue what leads to peace and to mutual edification.” (Romans 14:19)
come from a humble heart.
God resists the proud and gives grace to the humble, so don’t get a big head or act like a know-it-all. Maintain a teachable spirit. “You’ve heard the desire of the humble; You will strengthen their heart.” (Psalm 10:17)
not distract me.
This is a biggie. I’d much rather write than fold laundry or wash dishes, yet we can’t use blogging as an excuse to neglect the chores that keep our homes running smoothly. “She looks well to the ways of her household & doesn’t eat the bread of idleness.” (Proverbs 31:27)
I want to right things that are helpful from both a spiritual and a practical standpoint. “The more you grow, the more productive & useful you will be in your knowledge of Christ.” (2 Peter 1:8)
be written in integrity.
Be the same person online that you are in real life (and vice versa!). Always write with honesty and authenticity. “He who walks in integrity walks securely….” (Proverbs 10:9)
cast out fear.
Don’t be afraid to proclaim hard truths. Write with courage. “God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” (2 Timothy 1:7)
Make sure everything you write is accurate. Be fair and true. Don’t fudge on facts to make a point. “Be diligent to present yourself approved to God… accurately handling the word of truth.” (2 Timothy 2:15)
be motivated by love.
We should make it our goal to always and only speak (and write) the truth in love. When we are motivated by love, our words take on a timbre that cannot be achieved in any other way. “…if we love one another, God abides in us, and His love is perfected in us.” (1 John 4:12)
lift up the downtrodden.
Use your platform to speak up for the less fortunate. Defend those who cannot defend themselves. “Don’t let the downtrodden be humiliated again….” (Psalm 74:21)
Tenaciously cling to the truth and proclaim it with boldness. “Pray that I may be able to speak boldly as I ought to speak.” (Ephesians 6:20)
arise from pure intentions.
Check your motivations. What do you hope to gain by blogging? “…love that comes from a pure heart, a clear conscience & a sincere faith.” (1 Timothy 1:5)
be full of mercy.
God has shown us great mercy. We should extend the same to others. “Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.” (Luke 6:36)
show firmness of faith.
Cast away double-mindedness; remain faithful and true. “Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be courageous; be strong.” (1 Corinthians 16:13)
give hope to the hopeless.
Our hope does not lay in political reform or social programs or any other institution of man. Our hope lies completely in Christ, and we should direct others to put their trust wholly in Him. “Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing…” (Romans 15:13)
strengthen the weak.
Write in a way that gives strength to those who need it most. “Encourage the exhausted, and strengthen the feeble.” (Isaiah 35:3)
Don’t stir up discord unnecessarily. While you needn’t shy away from conflict when it arises, neither should you go looking for it. “If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.” (Romans 12:18)
Never compromise the truth. Call sin sin and pray that God would draw those who practice it to repentance. “Preach the word…reprove, rebuke, & encourage with every form of patient instruction.” (2 Timothy 4:2)
Show kindness, courtesy, and respect to everyone with whom you interact, whether they extend to you the gentle manners or not. “Clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience.” (Colossians 3:12)
keep an eternal perspective.
We must seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness…“Set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth.” (Colossians 3:2)
comfort the afflicted.
There is a lot of misery and tribulation in this dark world. Comfort those who suffer as God gives you opportunity. “…comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.” (2 Corinthians 1:4)
fulfill its purpose.
Be faithful to use the gifts God has given you wisely, and He will be faithful to use your obedience to accomplish His will. “…it will accomplish what I desire & achieve the purpose for which I sent it.” (Isaiah 55:11)