I’ve spent the past week settling into my new job as a summer intern at Northridge Church in Rochester, NY. In just a few days, I’ve read a lot of articles and books about church culture, met a bunch of new people, and only set off one security alarm (sorry Jason & Dave), so I guess you could say things are getting pretty serious.
One thing that’s fascinated me is the attention to detail and near laser-focus on their goal: to make More and Better Disciples of Jesus Christ. I was surprised to see that for a church of their size (over 2,000 regular attenders over 3 campuses), the relatively few number of ministries and programs that they are involved in. Instead, they’ve put all of their energy into the main goal of making more and better disciples. Everything they do has a reason. Everything they do must answer a two-fold question: 1) Why are we doing this, and 2) does it align with our mission? Everything they do has an answer to a “why” question behind it.
Find Your Reason
If that’s the case, I wanted to answer the question myself.
Why do I have a blog?
For me, the answer came down to these three reasons, and in everything I do, I try to keep these main things the focus:
1. To talk about Jesus
Recently, Francis Chan gave a talk at Google. He mentioned that he loves the opportunity to preach and speak at events because it allows him to brag about God and tell others about Jesus.
In Psalm 71:15, David writes, "my mouth will tell of your righteous acts, of your deeds of salvation all the day, for their number is past my knowledge.”
As Christ’s ambassadors, we get the opportunity to tell other people of what God has done and is doing. Anything that gives me an opportunity to talk about Jesus, count me in.
2. To help others
I’ve found I relate to the struggles of a lot of high school and college-aged students because I’m in a similar period of life. It’s a transitional time for most people my age and knowing what it looks like to walk with Christ at these times can be confusing, especially when you don’t know what’s next.
I talk a lot about connecting the Gospel to every day life because that’s what has helped me – seeing how Jesus has made an impact on my life and the people around me. Finding purpose in the mess of life. To me, that’s worth sharing.
3. To practice!
I’ll let you in a secret: not every article I write will be awesome. Okay, okay, it's not really a secret.
Some thing I write might be pretty lame. No one wakes up a great speaker or NBA athlete without putting in the hours of practice. Practice is a discipline, and you have to accept there will be a lot of missed shots, jokes that fall flat, and other miscues along the way.
For years, I knew I wanted to write, but my fear kept me from starting. That desire to “get all of my ducks in a row” paralyzed my ability to do anything productive towards my goal. So instead, I did a lot of talking about it, while actually doing nothing. My friends and family listened to a lot of my ideas, but that’s where most of them stayed: ideas. At some point, you have to come to realize if you keep waiting for the “perfect moment,” you’ll never start.
So, having a place to host articles and ideas that the Lord puts on my heart is a great exercise in honing the skill and discipline of writing. I have no idea of knowing which articles will be useful to someone and which ones won't be. So the answer is to keep writing!
Start with why
Everything you do in your life and career should have a purpose. If it doesn’t, you should probably stop doing it. When you know your “why,” what you do and how you’ll do it become a lot clearer.
For me, answering why is what helped me finally start a blog – a project I’d wanted to do for a very long time. Also, it helps me remember why I started writing in the first place if I get off track. I can always come back to these three reasons: to talk about Jesus, to help others, and to practice a skill I enjoy. If I’m doing those things, I’m doing all right.
Don’t be so focused on the stuff that you’re doing that you forget why you do it.
Also, don’t set off security alarms. Especially at 1 AM.
Trust me on that one.