Writing For God’s Glory

Jana Carlson

Jana Carlson

Is it possible to pursue a public platform in a way that glorifies God instead of myself? Should a Christian seek to increase her influence?

Is it possible to pursue a public platform in a way that glorifies God instead of myself? Should a Christian seek to increase her influence? Is it always pride that propels one to be seen and heard?

These questions are common to Christians in many spheres of influence. Writing and blogging are no exception.

As I wrestle with the tension between platform-building and desiring to honor Christ alone, God graciously continues to connect me with fellow Jesus-following writers who shed glimpses of light on the issue. And I’m often surprised by Truth that addresses my questions in His Word.

I despise the thought of writing anything that would dishonor Christ, but my discomfort with the general idea of sharing my writing has greatly diminished since starting this blog.

Writing Is A Gift

Romans 12 is a great manual for how to conduct ourselves online. I’ll save a deeper study of that passage for another post, but verses 4-6 encourage me to write publicly:

For as in one body we have many members, and the members do not all have the same function, so we, though many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another. Having gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, let us use them … [emphasis mine]

God gave us gifts and He intends for us to use them. He has given me a gift to write, so I must write.

Gifts Are Meant To Be Shared

1 Peter 4:10-11 expands on this:

As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God’s varied grace: whoever speaks, as one who speaks oracles of God; whoever serves, as one who serves by the strength that God supplies—in order that in everything God may be glorified through Jesus Christ. To him belong glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen. [emphasis mine]

Ephesians 4:11-16 also tells us that our gifts are for “equipping the saints for the work of the ministry and for the building up of the Body of Christ.”

God has gifted all of us uniquely for a purpose beyond personal enjoyment. It is for the benefit of the Body of Christ and for His glory.

If I keep my gifts to myself, how is He glorified? How do my gifts benefit the Body if no one else knows they exist?

So, not only am I to write, I am to write for the benefit of others. That means I must allow others to read what I write.

For the Body & God’s Glory

Ensuring that my writing is for the benefit of others and for God’s glory instead of my own requires prayer, humility, accountability, and submission to the Lord. I cannot use my gift faithfully on my own. I need His Spirit to empower me and guide me, and I need the community of the Body of Christ to teach me and encourage me.

What Does It Look Like to Write for the Benefit of Others?

Abigail Dodds so beautifully expresses the necessity of writing from a place of humility by writing about what we’ve learned and applied. It’s good to speak the Truth (and to speak it in love), but it’s even better to speak the Truth and live it out. To “practice what we preach”.

I do this imperfectly. And that’s where God’s grace comes in. Abigail does it imperfectly, too (as does any human blogger), and yet God has used her writing to minister to me, to serve me, to teach me, to edify me, to grow me to greater maturity in Christ. I’m so thankful she’s been faithful to share her gift online even though it’s humbling.

Keeping My Message & Motivation In Check

3 Questions I Ask Before Clicking “Publish”, a post by Christa Threlfell effectively serves to keep me focused when I’m writing a blog post.

  • Is it true?
  • Does it exalt Christ as the True Hero?
  • Is it gracious?

To help me write what is true, I’ve chosen to write primarily about God’s Word. The Bible is as True as Truth gets! There are other topics I’ve considered writing about, and maybe someday I will. But for now, writing about God’s Word keeps me from unintentionally veering off into topics that might be more self-glorifying.

Exalting Christ is my heart’s desire. I don’t write because I want people to think I’m amazing. I write because I want people to know HE’s amazing! It delights me to share with others what God has done and is doing in my life. My biggest thrill is inspiring women to discover the living power of God’s Word.

If I’ve written a post that doesn’t point people to Christ, I don’t want it online. My goal is not to promote myself, but to promote Him.

Writing graciously means I’m not condemning others with my words. It’s important to me that my words don’t present a legalistic, formulaic approach to relationship with God. It is by grace we have been saved (Ephesians 4:8-9). When it comes to practical topics, I like to share what worked for me, but not as a prescription. My hope is to demonstrate God’s grace through my words.

Platform & Promotion

So, after all this talk about writing for the benefit of others and for the glory of God, what about the promotion part? What about pursuing a platform?

We know the destructive impact of pride and we know that Jesus thoroughly taught us the necessity of humility in the life of a Christian. So, is it wrong for a Christian to seek a platform from which to use their gifts?

Applying the Great Commission to Writing

At the beginning of this blog, I reached out to Christa Hutchins of Do A New Thing regarding this issue of self-promotion. This is what I wrote to her:

There’s a battle between my heart and my flesh. I have a message I want to share and that message is Christ-exalting, God-honoring, Gospel-centered. …God has given me a gift of writing…. So I believe I am called to faithfully use that gift to glorify Him. But my flesh is frustrated by doing it without any response, any engagement. I don’t want fame and fortune, but I desire to know that my efforts are having an effect. Is that selfish? Is it prideful? It somehow seems wrong to seek out an audience. Shouldn’t I just faithfully write what He lays on my heart and trust HIM to bring me who He wants?

Christa responded by referring to The Great Commission (Matthew 28:19-20).

“…at some point, we need to go find the people who need the message we are sharing.  Not so we can gain followers, but so that they can be changed by the power of God’s Word. Yes, God will bring people to your blog who he wants to hear your message, but you may need to meet those people on the road halfway.”

Pursuing Community

I still don’t have this all figured out, but I’ve sensed the Lord encouraging me to keep going, keep trying, keep writing, keep seeking answers.

And as I’ve done so, He’s been connecting me with fellow Christian bloggers who share their gift of writing for God’s glory. I write better because of them. I am growing in my relationships with Christ and my understanding of His Word. I am challenged to go deeper, to pursue holiness, to grow in faithfulness. Other writers have prayed for me, and I have prayed for them.

As I seek to build community through my blog and writing, looking for ways of serving my readers and fellow bloggers, I believe God is glorified in us – collectively. And my platform becomes more about our shared love of Christ than it is about me or any other individual.

Why I Write

My heart for this blog is to inspire and encourage women to get into God’s Word and discover its power for our lives today.

The Bible contains within its pages everything we need to know to live a victorious life in Christ. This Book is alive and active. It affects and impacts every aspect of our lives – even writing, even blogging.

Although I don’t have it all figured out and will never achieve “Christian blogging perfection”, by continuing to write, I am taking a step of faith that God will use the gift He’s given me for His glory.

“Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in Your sight, O Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer.” (Psalm 19:14)

Soli Deo Gloria – For the Glory of God Alone

If this is a topic you’d like to explore further, other links I recommend are:

40 Responses

  1. I am studying Luke and just yesterday studied 9:49ff about the disciples asking Jesus if they should stop other disciples who had been casting out demons in His name. And He was quick to tell them that they should be for those who are for Christ. We may not all agree on the nonessentials, but the essentials–faith in Christ–needs to be proclaimed in whatever way Christ leads us to proclaim it! Jana, you are doing a good thing, as are so many other godly writers on the internet! I do believe God opened up this new venue of communication (the Internet) just so we could get the word out better and faster. As long as your heart is right, and even if it’s not (Phil. 1:15-18), it is a good thing that God’s word is shared. That said, I so appreciate your desire not to make this place all about you! And I also resonate with your desire and carefulness in that pursuit! But you are right where you need to be, sister! Stay put! 😉

    1. Beth, you’ve greatly encouraged me this morning! Thank you for your input on this topic. That’s another great snippet from God’s Word that applies here, and I love that perspective. THANK YOU for taking the time to leave such a thoughtful and kind comment.

  2. Thank you so much for sharing my thoughts and concerns aloud here. I have been writing for about 9 years now, usually writing the words that God places on my heart. But then I go to check stats and have many of these same questions. My desire is to do this for God’s glory and for my growing closer to the Lord. I am reminded about “community” through your words as well. A vital component. I am glad you are my neighbor at Kelly’s today. Praising God in all we are about. Caring through Christ, ~ linda

    1. Linda, I’m so glad you stopped by and were encouraged. The more I blog, the more I appreciate the community of women who share a love of God’s Word and are courageous enough to put themselves out there online.

  3. Just as we all benefit from those who wrote out the Scripture centuries ago, many will be blessed by your obedience to write as well. Jesus, His disciples, and Paul all traveled by the leading of the Spirit to reach people. I see a connection with blogging in the same way. When it comes to the internet, we visit here and there, and in a sense “travel” to where God leads us. And it can bring others right back here to your blog to find truth. I hope that makes sense. And it all is for God’s glory!

  4. This is a fine line Christian bloggers must walk. We always must remember that all the glory must go to God and all light is reflected light. I have met so many inspirational Christian writers in the year I have been blogging. It has allowed me to deepen my faith and see things from others’ perspectives. Such a blessing!

  5. I like that verse from 1 Peter about using our gifts to serve others. It reminds us that our gifts are meant to be used and shared but also directs our focus onto others and not ourselves. I love that there is such a supportive Christian writing community and that we can encourage one another in this.

    1. Thanks for reading, Jennifer! (P.S. I just took a peek at your website and my heart leapt at your ministry! It is always a delight for me to encounter other women with a passion for God’s Word like yours.)

  6. Such great thoughts! I’ve been thinking so much about this lately. I’m perfectly happy to never make a lot of money as a writer… but to also never know if my efforts are in vain? That’s a pride area I’ve got to keep working on. I just want to know sometimes =/

    1. Part of our responsibility as writers, I think, is to keep our hearts in check in this area. So the continual struggle isn’t a bad thing. It forces us to examine ourselves and make sure our affections and motivations are in the right place.

  7. Such great thoughts and advice here, Jana! I love Christa’s final piece of advice— “we may need to meet those people halfway on the road.” This is something I’ve come to terms with myself. I might also add, we comfort others with the same comfort we have been given. That’s why I write! It’s a responsibility and a privilege to write for Jesus!
    Great post!

  8. Love the points you bring up here. As a fairly new faith blogger, this is a great resource for me. Writing IS a gift, and we are certainly called to use our gifts for his glory!

  9. I love this message, it is a struggle in ministry to keep our hearts pure and the enemy knows just how to lay on the guilt and shame to try to shut us down. We need messages just like this one to encourage us in our ministries, your message is like a prayer for a hedge of protection on each of us in ministry. Thank you for your faithfulness in stepping out in faith to share your message, God’s hand on this is evident.

  10. I see writing as my ministry and the only way to get the Word out is to share and celebrate it. So there’s no way around promotion. But yes. We do need to keep our egos in check and bring glory to God. Thanks for sharing your thoughts. Blessings!

    1. Yes, Mari-Anna. I agree it’s important to keep examining our hearts. Accountability and having these conversations, asking these questions… they’re all a part of it.

  11. I like getting kind words and comments, that people enjoy what I write or are encouraged, but I always say He gets the glory. I know He’s amazing.

  12. Thanks for laying this out so clearly and faith-based! I also struggle with this (I think many Christian writers do) and you’ve given me some great encouragement to keep perusing my gifts.

    1. I’m so glad you were encouraged, Katrina. Yes, I’m encountering more and more Christian writers talking about this all the time. I think it’s an important and valuable conversation to have.

  13. I have long thought that the internet can be used for the glory of God, to share His message, His words to those He brings to the virtual table. I like Christa’s response to your question. God will bring others to read the inspired words that flowed through your pen.

    I also like this statement you wrote and feel that I’m right there with you: Although I don’t have it all figured out and will never achieve “Christian blogging perfection”, by continuing to write, I am taking a step of faith that God will use the gift He’s given me for His glory.

    May we continue to write for His glory and His honour!

    Your neighbour from Faith on Fire Friday.

  14. I’m so glad I had the opportunity to read this post!! I’ve only been blogging online since beginning of October but I’ve definitely already realized that I have many of these exact thoughts. I know God called me and when I doubt I always go back to that specific moment when He made it clear. I most definitely want all of this; blog post, social posts and any other area He permits to be done to magnify Him. I too have already had the moments of “do I do this, would this be ok, does that make it seem like.” especially when you talk to family or friends, they don’t understand why you think Pinterest is important 😂 of course i want there to be a better chance for more people but I truly do want it to be, so more hurting hearts are able to hear about how the truth in God’s word can transform their life!! He did it in my life and it wouldn’t be right if I didn’t want to shout it from the roof tops of all HE has done for me……blogging is my roof top!! Thanks so much for encouraging me Jana. God sent it to me through you at a perfect time as He so always does things perfect!! #faithnfriendslinkup

  15. I think it’s great. I feel that way too and I feel like exploring concepts we have questions about and sharing what we learn is a great way to reach others (who may be wondering the same things).
    I also learn a lot myself through this process.
    It can also start conversations that can hopefully help people too.

  16. This is incredibly encouraging to me. I have been praying about starting to write a blog and writing for Christ. I also felt like it was a struggle to figure out how to find the balance in wanting to get people to my blog and just trusting that God will bring them. I went back and read Romans 12 and it was everything I needed to hear. Thank you for putting this out there and for being an inspiration. May God continue to bless you.

    1. Lisa, thank you for visiting Wield The Word and taking the time to leave a comment. I’m so grateful my words were an encouragement to you. May God guide and direct you as you seek to honor Him through your own words, too.

  17. I really enjoyed this post. I have just started blogging my God stories and often wonder if I’m doing it for the right reasons. Your post really spoke to me and encourages me to keep going, giving all of the glory to God. Thank you.

    1. It’s something I have to revisit often, Fiona. The temptation is always there to stray from God’s intended purpose for any piece we write. I’m glad my post helped you think through it and I thank you for your encouraging words.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

On Topic

You Might Also Enjoy...


Silence: More Precious Than Gold

Mental clutter is a malady of the modern age. Could silence be the cure? Is silence really golden? God’s Word regards it as something worth fighting for.