I’ve been wanting to write a post with a little more depth and a little more heart so you guys can get to know me a little better. I just wanted to move in a little closer with yall! So let’s dive in…
On Instagram it may appear that I am just galavanting around town, in new clothes, taking photos and not thinking twice. But unfortunately I am one of those extremely introspective, over-analyzing, self-examining people and to be frank, it has not been that “easy”. I have a huge inner conflict going on with becoming a blogger. For many reasons but I’ll try to break it down into two separate areas. One is for the way I could potentially make other people feel or the image I may portray to other people. (So, essentially other people haha). I dont want people to see my posts and think I am trying to say “Look at me” or “Look at what I have”… that communicates vanity and greed. (Shout out to my friend Maria of Tasty.Southern.Chic blog for the food for thought she posted on this topic that really got my wheels turning). But at the same time, selling things comes with the territory of being a blogger. (Lets be honest here, we do it because there is money to be made). But I am not in the business of trying to make people feel jealous, on the contrary I want you all to see my posts and feel inspired, or like you can relate to me. I want people to draw near to me not to be turned away.
The second reason is how blogging can make ME feel. Starting a blog feels a little bit like living in the cheapest house in the best neighborhood. If you have the cheapest, smallest house on the block, you’re looking up. You’re looking at people with more income than you. You’re setting your consumption standards to your neighbors. Does that make sense? This is where it gets super complex for me because of my faith. In the past year and half I have gone on three mission trips to third-world countries. I have seen people in the world so hungry that God cannot appear to them except in the form of bread. When my eyes are fixed on people like that, people with less, my heart is encouraged towards modesty, gratitude and generosity. So publicly advertising a new sweater when I already have 5,291 sweaters can feel a little hypocritical and obnoxious to me at times but I am constantly exposed to more and more and more. I am trying to keep my head above the water by continually reminding myself that whatever my goal may be with the blog; followers, income, anything, that none of those numbers are going to fill up my cup. “Everyone who drinks the water will be thirsty again,but whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst” – John 4:13-14 For me, and my soul, I know that I can not be filled by anything short of Him. I say that right now, in this moment but don’t get me wrong there are times, many times A DAY, that I forget that and foolishly think that my appearance or my possessions or ANYTHING ELSE will give me contentment. I have to speak this truth to myself constantly… that the girls with a million followers or the most expensive bags or best collaborations are not guaranteed anything I don’t already have or what matters most; peace and joy. (I can save that fruitless and depleting comparison game for an entire other post).
Another thing I wrestle with when it comes to blogging (I used the word wrestle with Taylor the other day and he was like “You’re wrestling with something internally? I never do that” … the difference between men and woman in a nutshell!!) is living out the special sauce of the gospel which is self forgetfulness. Being humble, which is not thinking less of yourself but thinking of yourself less…
I am reading this book right now called Free of Me by Sharon Hodde Miller (stop reading this and jump over to amazon and purchase the book! thank me later!) and she talks about how imperative it is to shift the focus off ourselves and onto God. That self-focus will rob us of our joy, that focusing on our image and reputation with cause us to wither inside and how living for just ourselves is a crushing weight. Soooooo, you can see why launching a blog all about ANDREA has caused a bit of inward strife for me! Self-forgetfulness is hard enough, but it’s especially hard when you are trying to “build your brand”. “Search me, O God, and know my heart. Test me and my thoughts.” – Psalms 139:23-24. I am trying to navigate my way through blogging with a goal of providing a space of encouragement and a source of inspiration to my followers, and hopefully incidentally showcasing what God has done in my life. Whew. That is quite a mission statement huh?! I am not saying every post is going to be a sermon (and I do apologize if this one is coming across as a little preachy but I am just sharing my thoughts) or that I won’t be talkin about some cute new romper because obviously I do love clothes and all that fun stuff but at the heart of my blog and my overall social media presence, My desire for my faith and character to grow and show more is greater than my want for my followers to grow and my platform to show. You know? Trying to keep my heart in check while becoming a blogger is definitely where the rubber meets the road in regards to my faith; so I wanted to write this post for accountability purposes as well! So although I feel as though I am fumbling a bit to find my way, I do know my why and I hope it shines through to you. On a lighter note, I have only been blogging for about a month and I am already so excited about the connections and creativity it is bringing into my life. (Dear Andrea, get out of your head, be yourself and have fun)
Thank you so much for reading.