7.20.2011

Obsessed: Pride


This quote is particularly convicting. As it suggests, we all struggle with the sin of pride and it can surface in so many different ways. I've been thinking a lot about pride and how it surfaces in this blog world I've become a part of.

It is so easy to get caught up in the numbers. Many bloggers encourage this, and in fact there are many whose sole purpose is to get as many "followers" as possible. My question is, why? I guess I can understand a little bit if blogging is your source of income. The more clicks, the more you make. But, what about us who are just blogging for the fun of it and for the community we're a part of? Why are followers so important? Could it be because it makes us feel good? Could it be that the more people who want to read our blogs makes us feel validated and better about ourselves? Could it be that it makes us feel important... worthy?

I've started recognizing another trend in the blog world. If you are a female Christian blogger you might recognize it as well. The blogs are pretty, the photographs in each post look professional, the words are flowery and full of deep theological ideas and ponderings... and then a book is written, then a speaking engagement at a blog conference, then another book, and conference. None of this is wrong. I am not saying that at all. But I start to wonder how pride begins to play a part. Let me explain  with 100% honesty -

I read these blogs and find encouragement in many of the posts. I become interested in the author and her life. Then she publishes a book and I must read it. Then I find out she's speaking at a blog conference and I go to the conference site. There I read that the conference is a must for all Christian bloggers. You simply must go. Anybody who is anybody will be there! Then I get sucked in. I want to go to the conference! I want to learn how to build my readership, make my blog photos look professional, my posts more eye catching and sensational... and I want to write a book! But why? When I really stop that train and think about why I want all this as well the answer isn't so pretty... pride.

Their lives look so pretty and glamorous. Their books are wildly popular and their names are splashed all over the web. Their families seem perfect and their children are dolls. But this isn't Hollywood we're talking about - it's Christian women. So I rationalize that this type of fame is fine - good, even. And then it hits me - the motivation behind all of this (for me) would be to seek my own fame and not the Lord's. Ugly ugly ugly pride. Then I re evaluate. I think about the blogs I read that convict me. The ones that bring me to my knees in prayer and worship. The ones that lead me closer to Jesus and motivate me to serve Him even when it's hard. Those bloggers aren't as popular. Their pictures aren't of gorgeous, perfectly groomed homes and children. Instead I see images of children with no shoes in mud huts. I see pictures of men with no fingers but smiles on their faces. The words I read don't make me feel defeated and not good enough while I run out to get new clothes, make up, and things to re decorate my home. Instead they shed light on true need. They encourage me in my walk of faith and convict me of my sin. They are examples of what it looks like to follow God where HE goes.... following him into the hard places and being his hands and feet. And then I know why I love those blogs to much. It's because Christ is made known through them.

I've been pondering all this as it applies to my blog. I've been praying about my heart, my pride, and how I can make Christ more known and myself less. One truth keeps coming to my heart - my worth is in Jesus alone... not in numbers. My treasure is in heaven not on earth so I do not need nor desire the perfect home, most fashionable trends, and latest fads. And TRUE JOY comes from knowing Jesus, serving him in all things, and glorifying HIS name. I am seeking. Seeking to make more of Him and less of me...

How about you? Do you struggle with pride? What are problem areas for you and what do you do to combat pride?

13 comments:

Jeannie Pederson said...

Thank you for this! I don't even have a blog right now, partly for the reasons you mentioned (partly because I'm too busy living to write about it!). Your blog has been an encouragement to me. Thank you for simply sharing from your heart.

{amy} said...

I completely understand what you're saying! I've had a lot of the same thoughts & realized it was pride. I don't have all the answers, but one thing I did was take the "followers" gadget (or whatever it's called) off of my blog. You can still follow me, but it doesn't show how many followers I have. {I'm sure you can find out if you look hard enough, but it's not right there for me & everyone to see!} I also realized that part of my motivation for participating in memes was to get more readers, so I haven't done one in a long time. Nothing against them ~and I may participate in the future~ but only if my motivation is right!

SydneysHome said...

This is was a such timely post for me. I'm new to blogging, and I consistently think about "followers." But, when I think about why I want followers, it's almost entirely an issue of pride.

And while I read your post, I was listening to this message (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cncEhCvrVgQ&feature=youtube_gdata_player), sent to me by a friend (I think it's relatively well-known.).

Between the two, I'm just getting blown away with challenging words today.

Thanks for the reminder that it's not about me. It's about making Christ known to the nations.

Critty said...

Adore this post Lauren. In the past 7 months my reading habits and blog habits have changed. I read the blogs that touch my heart...and truthfully the ones I enjoy interacting with. It is such a joy to get to know these women...through their words and emails and life... not a book or a conference. I think it's great some people do that...but it is not for me.

And I stopped looking at stats long ago.... no comments or 10 comments I just adore writing and sharing my heart. And that is what my blog is...an extension of me.

Thanks for your thoughts... they are challenging and comforting to know I am not the only one :)

<3

Tracy said...

Lauren, wonderful thoughts today. It is so easy to let pride come into our lives and not even recognize it! Thank you so much for being honest! I love what you and your husband did with your grocery money! Thank you for your example!! It is so encouraging to know that God is working and to see it... is awesome!! :)

Brooke said...

well written. and yes, its very much a struggle of mine. i want to be noteworthy, exceptional, but rarely want those things as a result of actions for Christ.

Jim and April said...

see, this is just another reason why I still read your blog when I have stopped so many others...so many of the things you write, line up with how I feel too. Thanks for writing this post, it needed to be written! love you girl. Christ does shine through you!

Jessi said...

so needed to read this today!

Kristin said...

This was such a great post, Lauren!! I had to realize that the reason I was so interested in having my own business was pride. I wanted to be successful like others I saw and I wanted people to look at my shop and be like, Oh that's so cute! I had to be honest with myself and realize that I really don't enjoy making things. I do enjoy the business aspects of running an online store and shipping and packaging, but I just wasn't doing it for the right reasons.

And I can relate to whole blog followers thing. I can honestly say though that I enjoy blogging so much more since I got my new blog url that is not searchable and lost half my followers. Ha! I truly love every person's blog that I read and email back and forth with and it makes it so much more meaningful!

Craig said...

Lauren, a post that any blogger could relate to. And brave! I want to be a little careful with my words because – I'm one of those who will need to make a penny or two off of my site eventually. It's the "sleep thing" that has prevented me from having a single night of restful sleep and 15 years – and the doctors have no cure. So I can't make a living the regular way. So I may become one of those bloggers. I hope that's okay. It took 10 min. to write this response to your post – I sat in front of the screen not wanting to hit the keyboard – I get what you're saying – I really do – but should there one day be a book on my site – know that I'm trying to just do the best I can with the hand that is dealt and the gifts that God has given me – God bless and keep you and each and every one of yours Lauren. And humility - well - if love of money is the root of all evil – then a humble heart might just be the root of all good :-)

Desiree said...

yep. yep. yep. nods in agreement. :)

Kelly said...

Such a good post, Lauren! Thank you for sharing your heart!

priz said...

Hi Lauren, thanks for sharing. my hubby and i went through the same experience like you and hubby... God spoke to me once tru the Holy Spirit that Jesus Himself was 'adopted' too. Becoz of His great love, Abba Father 'adopted' Him to Mary and Joseph.God bless you and family! (opps i'm not sure whether i comment at the right place..:))