i get 2 questions asked often: why don't you wear deodorant and how did you get followers on your blog?
i would like to address the latter to spare you from the armpit talk.
if you are in the blogger world (or twitter or instagram or Facebook), i think it's pretty obvious that many people are after this accumulation of followers. i.e. a giant popularity contest.
and i will say, this applies to christian and non-christian folks.
for you christian folks, i want to tell you something. i have no idea how i have followers...except that God made it happen.
i would also say, when you ask, how do i get more followers, you are asking the wrong question. your blog is not about popularity and the approval of men. that should not be your goal, nor should it be the rudder in your blogging endeavor. your guiding questions should not look like, what do my readers want to hear? what do people like to read? what will get me higher stats? what will get me more notoriety?
for some reason, because it is a blog or interweb related, we tend to think the bible has nothing to say about this and so we kind of just do what we see modeled by other bloggers. and yet the bible does say a lot about this topic.
God's word applies to everything...even your blog who you think no one reads and your blog who maybe lots of people read.
now i've already made some of you mad, but stick with me here.
if i walked around in normal life saying, what do you guys want me to talk about for you to be my friend ?! who do you want me to be?! you don't like this outfit? ugg, that hurts my feelings...i'll never wear it again. ok...if i act this way, will you be my friend?what about this way? no? ok! tell me who i am!
you would say, that girl has issues. and that girl does have issues. because that girl is all of us to some extent or another just slightly exaggerated because that's how i roll.
the heart issue here is that we love the approval of man over the approval of God.
we give our affections to other gods and we chase after something that will never satisfy us. we find our identity elsewhere other than who God says we are.
if i find my identity in how many followers i have, i will be on the prowl constantly to gather people to "like" me. i will sometimes mold myself to be who they want me to be. in small or large ways, but i'll do it nonetheless. is that you? does this consume your brain? things that consume our brain are often what we call "treasures". and God says, where your treasure is, there your heart will be.
God is after your heart. all of it. there's not room for both treasures.
so instead of chasing after approval, i wonder what it would look like if we started asking the right question.
Not, how do i get more followers but why do i exist?
now quickly turn to the back of the math textbook for the answer...
the answer is, you exist to glorify Christ.
so then we ask specifically,
because i exist to make God's name great, what does it look like to glorify Christ on my blog?
what would it look like to submit that Christ is in control of my blog and can make it big or small or reach ten or reach one million. do you know that both are just as important when we are glorifying the cross and the creator of all things?
and by the by, some of his creations include the gigantic physical world and all those living in it. and it includes the mighty interwebs and your blogging community. it includes your gifts and talents of writing and design and photography and networking.
these are not ours. we are simply ambassadors that steward these gifts in order to say, i represent something greater than myself.
1 peter 4:11 says,
If anyone speaks, he should do it as one speaking the very words of God. If anyone serves, he should do it with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. To him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen.
these blogs and our words and pictures are not ours to make our name great but to make His Name great. we are not called to make disciples of ourselves, only to make disciples of Him. everything we do should be pointing people back to the God of the universe. our lives are a short breath. and as bloggers and followers of Christ, we need to gain more of an eternal perspective that shapes our heart and is portrayed in our blogging and in all other social media.
with that said, if this is the main goal of your heart, so that people would encounter the living God, then by all means, you can strategize and network and grow your business and your blog with Christ at the center and director of it all. always holding our endeavors loosely so that they do not become little idols we carry around and worship.
so i'm not putting rules here like, everyone take off your follower button! because what is a struggle for you is perhaps not a struggle for others. in fact, they might be using it to grow an audience that is hearing the Gospel.
regardless, fellow bloggers, be careful. examine your heart. dig around in there and ask God to shine a light in those dark corners of your blogging heart. repent where you need to repent and abandon your goals of making yourself great instead of Jesus.
colassions 3 puts it best. with parenthetical jami remarks.
17 And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything(blog!) in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him(because those gifts you have, He gave you!)... 23 Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men(you don't need their approval, you have God's), 24 knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ (not yourself!).