In the course of a week, I often wonder what I am doing, spending my free time on this blog. I have been thinking about this more, lately, which seems to be a result of all of the vlogs I follow on YouTube. Since my sister and I dumped cable television a few years ago, we have watched an ever increasing amount of YouTube. As lovers of learning and knowledge, we follow a motley selection of channels about aviation, over-the-road trucking, history, science, and general knowledge. Recently, we began following a couple of dairy farmers’ vlogs. I have learned a lot about cows, milk production, and even tractors. My favorite part is any content including the cute, little calves.
For some reason, watching dairy farmers on YouTube has made me consider what I am doing on my own blog. Obviously, it is different being a writer, but in order to gain an audience in any medium, you have to have content that engages peoples’ interest. It is amazing to me that anyone other than my mother reads what I write. But having readers doesn’t mean that I am doing something meaningful. I want to serve God and bring Him glory, but is this service? I have often thought that being an encouragement to one person, even if it is my mother, would be worthwhile. But frequently I doubt whether I am accomplishing anything or using my time as God would have me to.
Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, so now, not only as in my presence but much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure.
As a communicator, I almost always have something to say. As a believer in Jesus Christ, I know that there is only one thing that is truly important for me to communicate: the saving grace available through faith in Jesus Christ. Nothing else I could write about compares with that Good News. My top goal should always be to communicate what God wants me to share. I am sure I have mentioned Acts 20:24 in previous blogs. For a while, I had this verse on a note card that O carried around in my purse. As Paul was saying goodbye to the Ephesian elders, he said, “But I do not account my life as any value nor as precious to myself, if only I may finish my course and the ministry that I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God.” I know that my life and work cannot be compared to the Apostle Paul. But when I die, I would like to be able to say that I have completed ‘the ministry that I received from the Lord Jesus.’
All of us who know Jesus are called to be witnesses. The term, witness has its roots with the apostles, who testified to what they had personally witnessed of the ministry of Jesus Christ. Two thousand years later, we are still called to testify to the work that we have seen Jesus do in our lives and the lives of other believers. As I consider what I am doing and why, I see this blog is an opportunity to testify to the work that God is doing in my life. As I “work out [my] own salvation” on the pages of a composition book, each week, I transcribe my thoughts and internal wrestlings to the pages of this blog. And maybe I am my most important audience. I need to see my own growth and be reminded of God’s steadfast love and faithfulness in my life. When God’s Word speaks to me and causes me to see my life and the world differently, I need to preserve those lessons.
Moses said, “Please show me your glory.” And he said, “I will make all my goodness pass before you and will proclaim before you my name ‘The LORD.’ And I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and will show mercy on whom I will show mercy.”
I must take care never to think this is about me; it is all about GOD. For any of us, making the story about ourselves and our struggles is a recipe for unhappiness. Joy is found in realizing there is something bigger than ourselves, and it is God, who loves us and ties His own glory to our lives! In Knowing God, J. I. Packer addressed the complaint some have, that it is impossible to relate to the people in the Bible because it was a long time ago and their lives were too different. Packer’s response was that the Bible isn’t about the people, it is about God, and He doesn’t change. As God dealt with the people whose lives are recorded in Scripture, He will also deal with us.
I was reminded of myself at thirty-years-old. I was wrestling with still being single at that “old” age, and I complained to God that the Bible didn’t have anything for single women. God patiently showed me that I was wrong. The Bible isn’t about marital status or culture. It is about God, who is ‘slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love,’ and who ‘will show mercy on whom [He] will show mercy.’ God will deal with me as He did with King David, Peter, Paul, and Ruth. The book of Ruth was the first instrument God used to remind me that His Word was relevant to me, no matter what my life looked like. God taught me to read Scripture from a different perspective, and my love for Him and His Word have been growing ever since. This is what I hope to share: God, His Word, and His work in my life.