Yesterday I had the privilege of winning ‘Blogger of the year’ at the Christian New Media Awards. It’s a shocker and a real honour and I’m dealing with it in my usual gracious manner, (so far a messy combination of denial, painting the cupboards green at 4,30 am this morning and then having a little weep in Sainsburys).
Awards are funny things (see this post) and I know, as you do, that there are hundreds of blogs out there that could and should get the same title. But knowing this, I am massively, overwhelmingly grateful – to the organisers, the lovely folks who nominated me and most of all, to you, – for reading,engaging and reminding me that it’s okay if we’re losers at life; in fact, that’s what the kingdom is all about.
I started blogging because Glen nagged me – and because I needed a new way to live. After years of writing my feelings on my body, I ran out of lines. Recovering from anorexia, I didn’t know who I was or what I felt. But when I wrote, the blackness of it lightened. A person took shape in the sentences. Not an anorexic. But not a “survivor” or a “victor” either. Someone who was the opposite of what I wanted to be. The opposite of what I believed a Christian looked like. Someone selfish and frightened and weak and ashamed; but finally, real. And not alone.
When I whispered my fears into the silence, something amazing happened. The darkness echoed. People I’d never spoken to wrote back. They shared their lives with me, and their faith. They reminded me of the truth; that the gospel is for everyone. That it was true – for me, too.
We follow an incarnate Saviour; so it’s not surprising that real life – and church – happens in person. But real people read blogs. And though it can’t supplant them, social media can foster real faith and real relationships. When I was too scared to leave the house and too ashamed to meet the eyes of others, I connected online. Gradually, I was wooed back into actual contact; but those friendships have remained – and blogging was a big part of it.
Real people make real relationships through blogs. Real discipleship happens as we share Jesus, whether it’s through flannel-graph or Facebook. As I write, my prayer is that I’ll be able to share more of Jesus. But the person who my blogging has changed most is me. Communicating Christ is a priceless spiritual discipline and a joy. So thank you Lord, for giving me this opportunity. And thank you so much, for reading.