Radio Silence | Thoughts On Writing

If you’re one of the handful of people who read this blog on a really regular basis, you may have noticed that we haven’t posted anything new in over a month (or maybe two . . . or maybe three).

I’m realizing that at least once every year, I have a personal crisis in regard to writing. It’s like clockwork. As the date neared for us to renew our WordPress plan again last month, I struggled with the choice between renewing it (which demands that I start writing things again) and canceling the blog altogether. God providentially made this decision for me, as the date of renewal ended up being so chaotic that I forgot to implement what had been my choice: to cancel and move on with my other duties. So I woke up the next day to find that it had been renewed automatically, and I’ll admit that I didn’t have many positive feelings about it.

These were some of the things contributing to that perspective:

  • No one seems to have time in this age to consume anything except 30 minute podcast episodes, and by the time you as a writer are able to process, compose, and edit a written blog post, the corresponding event has likely passed and made way for some new issue to take its place in the public sphere. Plus, I rarely ever comment on “hot topics” anyway because I feel that I have nothing to say that someone else hasn’t or couldn’t say more effectively and to more people.
  • I’m constantly questioning myself about whether our small amount of readership and views can justify spending money on the domains and hosting each year. I’m not the kind of person who excels in marketing and business growth – especially since this is not a business, and I would be marketing my thoughts rather than a product, which is very intimidating.
  • I have to repent of envy on a regular basis when I see other similar blogs that are thriving and even generating an income for their authors. I don’t know if I believe I’m “cut out” for that level of writing, and to be honest I haven’t had the courage or the grit to give it a real pursuit (probably because I’m afraid of failing). Failing as a writer is really personal and devastating, because it says something about the quality of your thoughts and ideas on a broader level. Heck, even struggling as a writer is extremely humbling and painful at times.

However, I do still believe as part of my core self and my overarching worldview that the written word will never cease to be important, or even special. I’m still ironing out why it is special and I suspect I will be doing so throughout my life, but the fact remains. I don’t say this as an actual analogy because I would never compare my own words to the words of Scripture, but I think it’s important to remember that God chose the written word as the medium for His special self-revelation. Of course there are other lesser forms (like the general revelation we find in the created world of nature and His imago Dei in other human beings) but the Scriptures surpass these things in authority and value. I don’t claim to know why He chose the written word to bear this glory, but I can’t deny that it bestows a weight and importance to it that no progress in video, podcasting, and so on can ever actually diminish.

Thus, I can never really justify a decision to stop writing because I’ve bought the lie that it’s not important anymore to read and write. And I especially can’t stop writing just because I’m afraid (sinfully so) of never making a name for myself in the industry or of always having a small readership. Small readerships are still made up of individual souls that matter to God, and therefore should matter to me.

So, I go on writing. I will be ironing out the details of what it looks like for me to be a writer (even saying that, claiming the title, makes me uncomfortable at this point in the journey). The odds are high that my corner of the internet won’t always fit the mold for what a blog managed by a Reformed wife and mother is expected to be like, either in aesthetics or composition.

I imagine that I’ll grow more comfortable with this with time and practice – and, of course, with the grace of God. Thanks for your interest in growing with me.

Grace and peace,

2 Comments Add yours

  1. Monique Moore says:

    Hello Jessica! I’ve never commented before but I just want you to know that as a fellow Reformed wife and mother, I always appreciate your insights. They’re very thoughtful and thought-provoking. You are definitely a writer, no matter how often you write. You have things to say that are unique because as an Image-bearer you are unique. So, for what it’s worth, I say keep on keeping on!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Mary Mulder says:

    Jessica, this is Mary Beth. I subscribed because I like to keep in touch with you, and we no longer live close together and have not for seven years. My husband is a writer, and has a very small following on his blog and has expressed many of the same struggles you have described in this post. Iva is little now, but in twenty years Lord willing she will be able to trace the path you have traveled and enjoy and relish her role in that path. Keep on writing, keep being faithful with the gifts and talents God has given you. He alone is responsible for the fruit that grows from it.

    Liked by 1 person

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