Thursday, 21 April 2016

I've hit the big 5O! A guide to blogging success in Christ

I have hit the big five O!

Apparently 50 is a milestone number for writers. I've always seen sitcoms celebrating the 50 th and 100 th episode. So I'm celebrating too. Technically, this is my 51 st but who's counting?

When I just started my blog, I read everything blog related; I went on a few bloggers networks- they said- don't apply unless you've written 50 posts! So I wanted to get here, it meant being taken seriously. It meant you were committed... It meant you were blogger network worthy. most ' goals ' when you get there, you are like ' now what? ' What happens when you hit those self imposed, man made targets?

I have scribbled a few of my thoughts, dare I say tips in this post about 'successful' blogging.

Push pass the crowd and touch the hem of his garment! 

When I started this blog 50 posts back in July, I had no idea there were so many Christian blogs out there. I felt like Alice in Wonderland- lost!

But I wrote still! 

I read all the posts that offered advice on how to grow your blog. I visited successful sites and tried to get ideas, I read posts on SEO's. I latched on to free webinars, signed up to receive mail from ' the people who went through it already so you don't have to'! 

I wrote, and I waited with every post to see a share- I waited for that ' viral post!'

Afterall, that's what makes blogs successful right? And doesn't God want us to be successful? If he called us to share through this medium, shouldn't we do all it takes to get in the big leagues?....

Your answer will depend on who you ask, but I read on a holy, one of my favourite Christian blogs...viral is closely related to virus! Isn't that the truth!

We are called to share the word for God's glory, not our own- he's been teaching me that. We all like to feel appreciated, and acknowledged for our efforts but this type of work requires all egos to be left behind; so if it's viral content we seek, we are in the wrong line of work.

The lady with the issue of blood pushed through the crowd to touch Jesus. We, in our efforts to push through the crowded blogosphere, must also seek to touch Jesus to be made whole. Jesus, and by extension his disciples touched lives - one at a time. Remember, the harvest is plenty, it's the labourers that are few. There are enough people out there for every blogger to reach one!

Find your niché 

God, in his wisdom gave us all a purpose, each one different but all to be used for his ultimate glory. I used to sing this hymn in high school...the line...' And we though many throughout the earth, we are one body in this one Lord.' It occurred to me that we look around at others and try to imitate their successes, not appreciating that our one true and wise God has given us a fire shut up in our bones for us to unleash! Each member important but with its own function. We must uncover our purpose and use it to his glory, that alone will make you successful.

The disciples, I suspect, might have had no idea their own writings would have changed a generation! They too didn't have a cult following but were just men, like you and me, being obedient to the unction of the spirit.

So, if you find that you are a great cook, and want to inspire others to eat healthier, feed that! If you have a way to write to reach the young- play it up. If you have a heart for the homeless- love them. Ultimately, we are feeding his sheep.

Write your truth

Another tip I came across from successful bloggers - write posts that help others in some way. Give advice to help others through their struggles. 
Many times when we go through our trials, we are fooled by the adversary that noone understands. We are alone. No one has gone through this before; we hide ourselves behind shame. But, oh, for some honest truth to shine through and light our darkness! In our quest to make our blogs successful, we often make it sanitised and cookie cutter perfect! The lost stay that way and slip deeper down the rabbit hole. The disciples were honest. They said- look right here at this thorn in my side, it's bothering me and I have prayed for relief. Relief wasn't immediate but it's coming. Again they made us know that that thing which we want to do, we do not but do what is wrong... We are in a battle of flesh and spirit but there is a hope in Jesus if we keep our minds stayed on him.

We have to write our truths to help others.

That shameful story, that dark place where we once hid, we must shine light there and look for others and bring them out from the depths of their own hells. People need raw, honest truths as desperately as the blind want to see. If your writing helps one, then you are successful.

SEO and the numbers game

I used to come into my blog and painstakingly look at my numbers- how many visitors did I have today? Which post did they read? How many shares did I have?  Were their any comments? Then I started to compare my blog with others and I started to 'introspect'. So many posts are written all over the Internet about how to increase your numbers, get more traffic to your blog, get more followers and get noticed. To what end? It's easy to lose sight of the end!

I read an interesting article early in my blog about Christian blogging and getting more traffic, the writer thought that we need to be just as vigorous in getting noticed as all the other genres of blogging because we have a greater purpose. The article also said the more people we reach, the more souls we are likely to touch; I agreed, in part.
Numbers and blog traffic are important especially if you want to monetize your blog and segway into appearances and book deals- cause as they say ' ain't nobody got time to listen to a person who isn't relevant'..right?

But, oh for a God who tells me that my talent will make way for me. Oh for a God that gives me favour! Oh when Jesus says ' yes' nobody can say no! I am by no means promoting mediocrity, for my God does nothing that isn't 'good' but God has a process, and most often, he starts small, with just a seed. As the tree grows, he prunes and then we all bear fruit in due season, and as we stay under his guidance we continue in prosperity.

God promotes, not man. You will be in the right place at the right time when he believes you are ready. Your job?... Be obedient.

I could have better numbers, I could write better titles for my posts to turn up in Google searches but I write the titles that are on my heart. I try to be honest. I look at my numbers now and I do not allow them to tell me I am not good enough a writer. I do not allow them to tell me that my content is bad. I am learning that I am pre approved, as Jennifer Dukes Lee says; I am going through my process.

Be true to yourself and give yourself a break.

I have a full time job, I'm a single mother, and I am basically running this blog from my phone! I have internet and PC issues and writing weekly posts, plus doing all the marketing it takes to run what is deemed a successful blog is a struggle. I'm tired and stretched thin, I am aware of my truths and I have to let them guide my decisions. If it were up to me, all my spare time would be spent sleeping but I know I am called to write and I have to push past my tiredness and  sometimes laziness and make the best use of my time. But I don't beat up on myself, instead I lean. Lean on him that can make my burdens light and fix it for me. It will all come together, he promises, he knows the plans he has for me and you...and just like his is good!

Life, begins at 50 huh?...let's see

Happy blogging disciples!


  1. lovely post Tanya and congrats if you need help with your blog at anytime im happy to help, im not a pro im still learning but i will help in anyway i can and if you need advice i am here also. Have a great weekend

  2. Congratulations, friend. I am always checking to see if you are online. I have missed our chats. 50 posts. That is great and like you said, it is in the sight of God and He makes us great not the things that we accomplish for Him. I hope you are doing well. I look forward to hearing from you. Have a great week!

  3. nice post:) and i love the plant.

  4. Congratulations Tanya! I have been blessed by reading what the Lord has given you to share. I can totally relate to what you have shared and I too have had to step back and really consider what makes my blog a success. Praying the Lord continues to prosper your blog in His way and that those who read it will see Jesus!