When I began, I had a backlog of ideas and writing passion ready to burst forth onto the computer screen. As I wrote my first posts, it was like opening a floodgate on a dam . . . I was swept up in the euphoria of writing again, and ended up publishing practically every week for the first couple of months. I compared my feelings to that of Eric Liddle, the Olympian who said, “When I run, I feel His pleasure.” I told one of my friends, “When I write, I feel God’s pleasure.” Friends who read my blog gave me lovely comments of encouragement, which spurred me on to keep writing.
Then reality set in. Readership began tapering off a bit. I also realized that working full-time, caring for an elderly father, and managing my own health challenges meant that I couldn’t sustain a break-neck pace of writing. I re-grouped and set a more sane approach to my blog schedule in October (see The Tortoise Approach).
With help from above, I published 29 posts over the past twelve months. The topics have covered a range of issues, including contentment, unfulfilled longings, my dog Bailey, trusting God, acknowledging emotional pain, heart friendships, unrealistic family expectations, chronic health problems, helping someone in need, death/grief, dealing with angry people, perfectionism, cultivating a thankful heart, intimacy with God, having an eternal perspective, the desire to marry, the successful single life, extending grace to others, eldercare transitions, true beauty, sharing about Jesus, what I learned from my mom, and what I learned from my dad.
Bloggers typically measure their “success” by their statistics. As of the date this post was published, singledevotion has had 2,598 views. When I started blogging, I confess I didn’t know what to expect. The prospect that anyone in the world could read my posts was both exhilarating and intimidating. When I look at my blog’s statistics, I’ve had views from multiple countries. But I’ve also learned that many views are not legitimate, and come from scammers and others with nefarious motives. Even fellow WordPress bloggers sometimes “like,” “follow,” or comment on another’s blog, not because they think it is that great, but because their primary motive is to direct traffic back to their own site.
In the world of blogging, my “statistics” are not that impressive – perhaps a bit disappointing, if I am honest. I had hoped to reach more people, in particular single adults. It appears that the bulk of singledevotion readers are existing family and friends (most of whom are not single!) Don’t get me wrong, I am grateful for each loyal reader, and that people who actually know me feel that my blog is worth reading. But I still wonder . . . why aren’t more people partaking?
So here are ten possible reasons that come to mind:
- You’ve never heard of it. (Obviously, if you’re reading this, you have, but there a literally billions of people who have no clue singledevotion exists.)
- You think it’s just for singles. (Which it’s not!)
- You think it’s just for women. (Again, men, there’s something in it for you, too.)
- You think it’s just for “older” readers. (Nope, it’s for readers of all ages.)
- It’s too “Christian.” (Well, no apologies there, but I do try to share my faith in a non-preachy, positive way).
- It doesn’t follow a predictable “formula.” (True, my format and topics have been intentionally diverse.)
- I’m not famous. (You’re right, I’m not affiliated with an organization like Proverbs 31 Ministries, nor am I a well-known author or speaker – I’m just a regular gal sharing from my life.)
- I haven’t played the blogger game and “followed” a bunch of other sites. (Guilty. I will follow blogs that I truly enjoy, but I won’t insincerely tell other writers I like their blogs, just to get them to possibly “like” mine.)
- You’re just too busy. (Trust me, I get it. We are all bombarded with demands on our time from every direction.)
- The blog doesn’t speak to you. (I respect that – everyone has their unique needs and preferences, and singledevotion is not going to fit all readers!)
Sometimes, when I look at the time and energy it takes to craft a blog post, I think “is it worth it?” This is especially true when very few readers comment on, “like” or “share” my posts, and I have little feedback on whether they have been enjoyed or made a difference. (I know, some of you are just not “commenters” and that doesn’t mean you didn’t like what you read). But for me, it’s a little like toiling to prepare a delectable and nutritious meal for a table full of people, and then everyone leaves without ever saying the food was good!
Ultimately it comes down to the question, “to blog, or not to blog?” One time, in a low moment, I sensed God asking me the question, “Would you continue to write if it were for only one reader?” My answer was “yes.” Sure, it’s more exhilarating to see the number of “views,” “likes” and “followers” climbing, but that can’t be my primary motivation for writing.
First and foremost, I must write because God has called me to. I find great joy in collaborating with my Creator in the writing process. When an idea sparks in my mind, or I watch a piece unfold on the screen, I see his divine hand in motion. Continuing to write is also an act of discipline and obedience. I believe it’s important to exercise my gifts, even when I don’t “feel” like it or receive a bunch of warm fuzzies in return. Most of all, by faith I believe that when I share my writing, God will use it to touch someone, even if I never hear about it.
That being said, I am ready to launch year two of singledevotion! I’m hoping to give the site a new design to freshen things up. I still have topics bubbling on the back burner, and I wait with anticipation to see what the events of the next 12 months will inspire.
Please know that I appreciate you and the time you take to read singledevotion, whether it’s sporadically or every time a new post pops up. It’s my prayer that as you sit around the singledevotion table, God will bless you, encourage you, and equip you to pursue a closer walk with Him.
P.S. If you’d like to receive an email alert each time I publish a new post, it’s easy – just click on the “Follow” button in the right column of this page under the heading that says “Follow Blog Via Email.”