Monday, July 25, 2011


Big plans.

Big dreams.

Big expectations.

Yup, I've had them all. And many of the things I've wished for have happened in my life. I graduated from college, I got married, I had children, bought a home. I've achieved many big things, and accomplished many small things.

But…there are still some things I long for that haven't happened.

And one of the things that I have wanted more than anything is a ministry for the Lord – a chance to have a voice for Him, to influence others toward Him, to speak and write things that would make a difference…

It's been one of my biggest dreams.

And it was the main reason that I started blogging. I have always wanted to write – and writing about the Lord, to the Lord, for the Lord has been my heart's desire for as long as I can remember.

So, a year later – here I am still blogging.

It's been a year of good surprises, and what I might deem "success." It's also been a year of God working on some difficult corners in my heart. It's been a year of smiles, and a year of tears as I've toiled with this whole thing called blogging.

I've swung on the wild pendulum of wanting and getting followers and lots of comments. I've swung all the way back to needing and not getting the feedback that I so desire.

Is my blogging about me?

No, not really.

But boy oh boy, does it affect me! Because writing is personal – so very personal. It's like putting your *heart* out there – and hoping, praying that people understand you, and get you…and yes, like you.

And that's where the difficulty lies. My feelings, my self-esteem get in the way of what God wants to do.

A year ago on Good Friday, we had a service – a very meaningful service. And during the service, we were asked to write down something that was very near to our hearts, something we wanted to give to God. I wrote down the three things that have always been at the forefront of my thoughts, and feelings, and actions.

One of them was my need for approval.

And then, we were asked to nail these things to the cross the cross of the One who gave away everything, gave up everything for us.

Do you know that pounding those nails into that cross actually hurt?

Down deep, where I don't want to bleed.

I have spent the last year struggling with this issue – wanting to let go of it once and for all frustrated that I haven't been able to. There have been times when I've been more "successful" at letting go of how people respond (or don't respond) to what I write. There have been other times when I've wrestled like Jacob to let go of it at all.

So, a couple weeks ago, when I was high in the mountains, God spoke to me through a fiction book that I was reading. Listen to this quote:

"We are really only supposed to focus on the depth of our ministry. God is the one responsible for its width." (The Judas Project by Bill Myers)


So, I've been thinking hard about this.

Am I concentrating too much on the *big* impact? Am I looking for approval instead of writing what God has to say to me? Am I a victim of numbers (or lack of) and forgetting why I'm really here in Blog Land?

Jesus didn't care about numbers.

He was here for a mission – and that was always, always about His message.

He only had 12 close disciples – and one of them betrayed Him. The Son of God, who created the entire universe, came to this planet and was content to start with 12 people.

Did Satan tempt Him?

Wow, you could have thousands of followers! Look how smooth Your words are, and how people respond to You. You know, if You just watered some of the tough stuff down a bit, You could be a superstar, a celebrity, an idol, a leader – a mover and a shaker. You could rule the world.

Or did Satan taunt Him?

Wow, look at You. You're the Son of God, and hardly anyone listens to You. People don't like You or what You have to say. They even tried to kill You in Your own hometown! Even your brothers think you're a crackpot. No one's listening to what You're saying. You're a failure, a loser, an ineffective person. You sorta influence 12 people, but even they don't really get it. Nobody really likes You.

I think Satan did both. Because he does the same thing to me.

But, Jesus did what He was called to do. And He did it faithfully.

Jesus, the Good Shepherd, said that He would leave 99 sheep to go out and find the one that was lost – the ONE sheep.

Another quote from another book I read while in the mountains:

"A growing flock means success, right? No – God reaches the few, too. He cares about the individual – He is teaching me to reach hearts. Am I content to be small?" (Quest for the Nail Prints by Don Furr)

That's what I'm asking myself lately.

And I'm asking you, too.

Am I willing to be small…

…for God's sake?

(NOTE: Dear friends, the past week has been a very difficult one. There have been many issues that I have had to deal with. So, though I have continued to post on my blog – because I so need to be speaking with God right now – I have been rather absent from commenting on your blogs for awhile. In light of this post, I didn't want anyone to think that I was ignoring you – or being less diligent in supporting the work you do on your blogs. I know how important it is to hear from others. Please know that I am reading, and being blessed and encouraged – and I will comment when I am able. I love you all…keep up the Lord's good work!)

BLOG = "Blessedly Leaning On God!"


  1. Hi Sharon,
    Firstly let me say, you do have a ministry, I have been blessed by your writings and I sure many others have too. Thank you for sharing yourself, not an easy thing to do, from one who knows.

    Secondly, I relate so much to this blog, and your note at the bottom, about your week.

    Please when you can keep blogging and sharing, sometimes people do read and are blessed, but for whatever reason don't or can't comment. That is what I have concluded for myself and I know sometimes I read other's blogs and I am either challenged or blessed or encouraged and somehow I don't find the words to comment. Even more annoying is the times when I do and Goggle decides to go A.W.O.L. and the comment is not published.

    My heart has and is bleeding a bit too at moment, thinking of you - Hugs - Nita. love ya

  2. Sharon:

    These words are for every blogger out there, every one of us. It's a similar message to what God has said to me many times too. You've voiced it other times, the reason you really blog is for the expression of what God is teaching you, and me, and each of us. Sharing our hearts validates His work in us, and so of course someone else is helped or blessed in the process. It's the faithfulness and obedience on our part that God will never waste.

    Your writing speaks to me, I GET your heart from your gifted expression. The great thing is... if He has more... a book, or something else... He is going to make it clear to you as you continue to serve by sharing your heart.

    You are a gift!


  3. Some weeks I cannot comment at all either...that's OK! Blogging should be relaxing. And yes, I can get caught up in the numbers too. Sharon, your posts inspire me, make me think, and help me to see where my walk with God needs to be stronger. Thank you for the time you put into is a ministry.

  4. Sharon - I hope the family issues and or health issues resolve in a very positive way!

  5. I want to say right up front that I'm sorry that I was out of town when you were having a bad week. You know that I may have been away from my computer, but you were not at all away from my mind. I can pray on vacation.

    As to this post, Sharon, if you only reached ONE PERSON through this blog, it would be a BIG THING to me because I would be one you have reached.

    Selfish? yes.
    But big and small are often a result of perspective. From where I stand, you've done a big thing.

    Once again, you write out beautifully what so many of us think or feel. It is a tool of the Enemy to tempt and taunt us. I think we need to be reminded that whenever we feel the prick, we should not only pray for ourselves but others.

    Missed you!
    Glad to be home!
    I'll be catching up on everything I have missed here throughout the day and in between laundry loads.

  6. Oh Sharon, powerful quotes you shared from those two books. Like you, I have found myself vacillating between seeking numbers and being content in the field God has me sowing. In our society numbers is often equated with success but it just doesn't always ring true in regards to Kingdom work. I am always blessed by your work but haven't had the opportunity to visit as often lately. But continue to serve God through your writing, you may never truly know the impact you have had on others.

  7. I've been off for a few weeks myself. But just wanted to drop by and see what was up on your blog. Glad I did. God bless you Sharon. You have such a transparent, tender heart toward God. He loves that! And He loves you.

  8. Sharon:

    First of all, let me say that I haven't been around to visit much in the past week. I am so sorry that I wasn't "here" for you, but please know you are in my prayers.

    And sister, did you crawl inside my thoughts? I have been struggling with the same thing! And like you, at times it is easy to give it to God, then I take it back and "wallow" in the mire of self-pity. I share your dreams of speaking and writing as a ministry. I believe that at this time God has called me to focus upon blogging, but oh I want things to happen in my time and waiting is hard...

    And yes, as Nita said, you DO have a ministry. Your words bless me and I know many others also.


  9. Your writing always blesses me, Sharon. I used
    to be caught up with the numbers and followers
    thing too. Not wise. It is then we lose our
    perspective and forget what the Lord wants to
    say through us. I blog to bless the Lord and
    encourage others. No other reason. I think
    that's your heart too.

  10. PS - Love the quote from the book. I need to remember it every day.

  11. Love you and praying for you, dear, dear, friend!

  12. I don't have a blog and only comment on a few. I haven't even read many lately except for my sister's because of an obedience thing with God about how much time I was spending on my computer. However, here I am today reading your blog. You need to know that I think you are a wonderfully gifted writer and that God IS using you in a mighty way. Press on dear sister.

  13. Blessings Sharon... I guess many relate to this as I do and I thought about this all day and all night, then I wondered if I had written a comment or what could/ I write. This came to me over and over... You and your words, Sharon, minister BIG and small to many and you are a voice for the Lord. And as you wrote to me recently: "...And I have learned that at least part of the reason I blog, is for what God does in MY heart through this avenue. If He speaks to me through what I write, then it would be hard to stop...." So even if it's God speaking to and through us for US, it's about Him and available to benefit others.

    And now I must defer to some colloquials: I guess I opened a "can of worms" and unleashed the enemy of doom and gloom to belittle or render us helpless or not doing enough for God's Kingdom or being ineffective... all lies. Stats and comments may be feedback for what we share but it really isn't what this is all about. It truly is ALL about Him. Maybe He's speaking to us...just us, and we are enough. After all, He died for just us... and He would have for just one of us. But once again, you captured this ALL so honestly and beautifully, right up to the 99 and 1.

    I too struggled so long with needing approval... and here the the remnants showing up once again.
    So it isn't just a heart issue or a numbers game, it's Him, working in us, to chisel out the lasting bit of people pleasing to make us God pleasers. Quite frankly, Sharon, God is so pleased with you and your heart but refining us,
    or SANCTIFYING us by Jehovah M'kaddesh (short version)is a continual process. You 'hit the nail' on the head in the comparison to our Lord Jesus ministry and numbers... WOW!

    So we need to rise above this, 'clear our heads'
    and hear what the Lord is speaking to us. I did not mean for this funky mood of mine to be transferred to others...sorry :0( I have no idea how this transferred to you, must be in the air or water or something... but look at all of us that have been drinking this tainted water of lies. So rise up women of God, and fight back.
    See what is happening and change for the glory of God... even if it's just ONE, ourself and what God wants to do in us through us... it's enough. Like a journal, like a diary, blogging is between Him and me (you)individually...even like a book draft or transcript, it's something 'in the rough' being carved out and refined in us. The audience need be no more than One. And the feedback; our own self mirrored, changed, Christ reflected in us. When we no longer are
    self absorbed or centered but all for His glory, shines... radiates through us,our words. And the best is yet to be.

    Sharon, you are ministering here,and this and what you do with the seniors is such a blessed ministry. Come who may and come what may... to God be the Glory. You bless me and clearly the previous comments also reveal how your writing touches and blesses us. So thank you and thank God for the gift that flows and is stirred in you.

    Love, peace and (((hugs)))

  14. oops...I wrote a bit too much what's new? Sorry... should have emailed...

  15. Good post...very honest and something I think we all should or do walk through entering the blog world.

    Thanks for all the provoking thoughts and for always pointing to the source.

  16. Hi Sharon,
    You have been on my heart this week and now I know why.
    The struggle you are going through is the same one most of us go through in this field of blogging. We share our hearts and we do seek approval. Numbers have mattered too often (I speak for myself.)
    It is a continual battle to relinquish this writing to the Lord. I have the same problem.
    You may want to look at Ann Voskamp's prayer for Bloggers--The Upside Down Blogger. Just go to her website and you will find it there. It challenges us to use the talent the Lord has given us for Him alone. Amazing!

    Yet, I must say that you do have a ministry with your writing and your clear explanation of Scripture. It is always practical and wrapped in a creative story or monologue. The Lord has gifted you with much talent. Just relinquish it back to Him and watch your dream explode! (See Catherine Marshall's book, "Beyond Ourselves." If it's not in that one, try "Something More, in Search of a Deeper Faith."
    Know I'll be praying for you, friend.

    God bless you with His peace and direction.

  17. I have felt a closeness with you from the first time I visited your blog. So, thank you so much for your honesty on this post. I agree with everything you have written here.

    The quote from Bill Myers is worth repeating, only a sentence, but it speaks volumes of truth:

    "We are really only supposed to focus on the depth of our ministry. God is the one responsible for its width."

    When I was a new blogger, I only had two regular readers for a long long time. Eventually more readers came, but really, on blogland, I realize that so called "blog friends" come and go. Only a few faithful ones remain... and at this point, I am so grateful for the few faithful ones. I know there are reasons why people can't always comments, or can't always visit. And once we are clear on one point - that blogging is to be a voice for Jesus, God will send the right person to read what you have written at the exact moment.

    It is so liberating to look at blogging that way!

    Sharon, you do have a voice on blogland. You write from your heart, and I am blessed each time I visit here!

    Keeping you in my prayers, that God will break through for you during this difficult time.


  18. Hi Sharon -

    Your sentiments are understandable. It's good for us to do introspection. I appreciate it, Sharon, that you keep it real.

    We are all works in progress.

    A while ago, I removed the "Followers" gadget/icon from my blog front screen. I was inclined in a way that wasn't pleasing to our Lord so He told me to remove it. I don't miss it.

    May we all steadfastly FOLLOW JESUS and be inclined to DO what pleases HIM - above all else.

  19. Ah those dark places you have been have brought out some very powerful writing and thoughts. That is why we must suffer sometimes for better understanding. But you have always allowed your mind to be open and God's messages have come to you. Messages that are your ministry with sharing here.
    I too often thougth of removing my comments as my blogs are really just meant to read and enjoy with often a message that I hope people take with them. I never engage in conversation in them. But yes that ego always bears it's ugly head. However I have gotten over if no one comments. People often just don't always have time for commenting as well. At least I know that is my excuse. Often as with your blog here suddenly people are commenting My only wish is that whatever I blog reaches the eyes of even one person who it may brighten there day or find meaning in it,weather they comment or not. There are many also who are having difficult times and an internet hug can do wonders. I know for the support that has been given to me in the last 3 years has slowly restored my confidence in myself in relating to people that had been lost in a deep depression. However my confidence in God had never waivered. I never blogged about it, I always wanted a positive place for people to visit. But when visiting others who I know are suffering I am able to relate with comments knowing how they felt. Sharon you have a special place here and your a wonderful writer. Do it for God and your seeds may take root even when you may not know it. What you suffer now will only help to bring more understanding in the field of your suffering. Giving you a big internet Hug....

  20. I am left speechless by your comments - the kindness you have expressed to me humbles and blesses me. The honesty of your vulnerability in sharing some of these same struggles is comforting. And your inspiring thoughts and insights increase my vision on this heartfelt issue.

    Thank you - you will never know how YOUR ministries are so necessary in my life. And I KNOW that many, many others are touched by the work you do in Blog Land, and in your real lives. God uses each of you to accomplish His purposes, whether they be big or small, seen or unseen in this life.

    Keep up the Lord's good work - nothing, NO THING, done in His name for His sake will ever come back void.



"So [I] have been greatly encouraged in the midst of [my] troubles and suffering, dear brothers and sisters, because you have remained strong in your faith. It gives [me] new life to know that you are standing firm in the Lord. How [I] thank God for you!" (1 Thessalonians 3:7-9)

Thanks for your comments - it is such a joy to be sharing my journey with friends like YOU!

(NOTE: Anonymous comments will be removed. Thank you for understanding.)