About the Author

Lisa-Jo is the best-selling author of Never Unfriended and Surprised by Motherhood. Her newest book, The Middle Matters: Why That (Extra)Ordinary Life Looks Really Good on You invites us to get a good look at our middles and gives us permission to embrace them.

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Comments

  1. i love this: “Forget the hundreds you wish would come; feed the hungry who are already there.” so easy to judge myself based on numbers instead of listening to christ who is the reason i write. when he says share this. share.

  2. Always a great attitude check when I read your posts. It can be so easy to be pulled away from our writing from not feeling good enough or popular enough, so I really appreciate the reminder to feed who is there.

    Praying for Relevant and all you gals to connect and refresh.

  3. Oh, friend–I love this truth! Small is purposeful, too. It allows space to breathe and remember quality matters. I’m always amazed at how a message I’m led to write is specifically picked out for a heart for me to connect with. Community, yes!

  4. I am a brand new Blogger, convinced He has called me to the writing table to share the gospel. Your encouragement is amazingly timely and appreciated to me! It is an act of faith and obedience to ‘cast your seed upon the wind’ and trust that God will bring the harvest when and where He will. It humbles me to have an opportunity to work in these fields with others like you. You ‘in’ courage me! Maybe, someday, I’ll get to meet you…!

  5. “but no one ever felt unwelcome in that overstuffed armchair pulled up by the fire, with feet up on the coffee table, and a good friend telling you it’s OK to be you.”

    Amen! We’d be no better than spammers if our goal was only numbers.

  6. THANK YOU For this post!! I have just opening up on my blog more and sharing my poetry and deeper feelings and thoughts that the Lord has pressed upon my heart. I just do it to share it, but sometimes I am disappointed if people aren’t looking at it or commenting on it. Maybe I just need to focus on sharing in the hopes it touches one person. Thank you again!!

  7. thank you so much for this very inspiring and enlightening post. as i am new in blogging, i get frustrated when no one reads my blog or when i get a few comments. makes me fees that my writing is not good enough. but this line struck me……”Perhaps less is more in the comment box just like it is in life.”

    it was nice meeting you here lisa jo….God bless you more!

  8. I love – “Because platforms can be lonely and spotlights too bright, but no one ever felt unwelcome in that overstuffed armchair pulled up by the fire, with feet up on the coffee table.”- What a nice picture!
    And “Perhaps less is more in the comment box just like it is in life.” So true.
    I used to live in Philadelphia for about 3 1/2 years from ’91-’94. My first child was born there. As a native Southerner, I though I would hate it. But the people were spectacular once you got to know them. I did hate the weather though! I’m used to early Springs!
    Thanks for your always lovely insight!

  9. For some reason I am trying to hold back the tears as I read this. It is so exactly what I needed for my heart today – so exactly.
    Thank you for being faithful to the call He has placed on your life Lisa-Jo. You most definitely minister to this one.

  10. Lisa-Jo thank you for sharing your story. I am so often encouraged by your words and insight and surprised by how much I need to “hear” them. Tears tend to freely flow as my heart is touched by someone I’ve never met but so aptly speaks into my life.

    Thank you doesn’t seem to cut it but know I am eating well and my heart is nourished.

  11. Wow…just wow. I know I won’t be the only voice to echo appreciation for your distinct, soothing words. I know that you could have chosen thousands of other syllables to fill the spaces of this post today. Yet what you said was intentional. Specific. A balm from the Spirit to reach crackling, bare hearts. Thank you Lisa-Jo. And please pass my gratitude to Hilary, whom with your help, I will now be following and hoping to encourage.

  12. It is hard to know when one is writing a blog how to think about it, I write and push publish and occasionally check the stats and for the last 4 weeks it has been zero. At first I thought blogger was having problems it seemed like it was not giving all information. How could over a hundred readers be zero? I can’t let it concern me, as Ann has written, we write for one and if in the process someone is blessed and encouraged than that is all we need. Have a wonderful time at Relevant someday I will be there too.

  13. That’s where I want my blog to go. I’m working on a new project to launch at the beginning of the year that hope does that for our community – offers a place – a community within the community – where stories of hope, stories of courage, stories of compassion, stories of gratitude can be shared. It’s so easy to forget to thank the people who make us who we are and shape us. I want this project to do just that.

    This post gives me hope that I can do just that. Thanks.

  14. Praying for Relevant this weekend… Know that those of us who had to stay, are standing with you in Spirit and praying that one of these years we will stand beside you in Pennsylvania…
    Blessings on your weekend!

  15. These are the exact words I needed to hear! Can’t wait to meet you AND Hilary this evening at Relevant. Loved this, Lisa-Jo!!

  16. I will add my gratitude to those who wrote before: Thank you. Thank you for the beautiful way of encouraging us to write what God asks us to write…because one person is just as important to Him as one thousand, and if God wants just one person to read what we have written, well, then, that is enough.

  17. Thank you so much for this. It is so hard to remember and so necessary, that our vein ambitions of being heard become less and less, but our desire to be used by God, even invisibly, become more and more.

  18. Such encouraging words today. I remember those days when no one visited my blog, and still I kept going. I get several comments a day now but still I continue. I blog for the one who’s life might be changed due to something I write. I blog for those who come. I am been very purposeful in building a community through blogging. I am blessed to be able to encourage women in this way.

  19. Absolutely true. It can be hard to put yourself out there in the blogging and social media world. We often wonder if anyone hears us or likes us. However, we also need to remember that the community we are trying to create in our space should go both ways. We need to write what God puts on our hearts in hopes of helping someone else, but we also need to be mindful to leave a comment for our fellow writers. We may be encouraging a writer who God really wants to use mightily~ someone who may give up on that call without encouragement.

    Isn’t it beautiful how God put us in community with one another? None of us has to stand alone.

  20. Makes me want to keep writing, even though it seems no one is reading. But my stories are tumbling through my head and into my soul and then out through my quickly-typing fingers. And if they reach no one, well, at least I have shared and opened myself to a world of readers should they ever want to share in return.

  21. What wonderful encouragement, Lisa-Jo. Thank you! I love this part:

    “I tell her, perhaps it’s not about who doesn’t come to read, it’s about who does. And are we prepared for them? What will we feed the hungry who pull up chairs to our blog table?

    Forget the hundreds you wish would come; feed the hungry who are already there.”

  22. Thanks for the encouragement! I have been feeling like I am doing something wrong since I don’t have gobs of followers. Thanks for reminding me that it’s about quality, not quantity.

  23. This post was awesome. What powerful words.

    This passage really spoke to me “I tell her, perhaps it’s not about who doesn’t come to read, it’s about who does. And are we prepared for them? What will we feed the hungry who pull up chairs to our blog table?

    Forget the hundreds you wish would come; feed the hungry who are already there.”

    Wow! That spoke volumes and really ministered to me today. Help me to pursue God that He may feed me so that I may share with others. May my post not be empty words but rather the words that God desires me to share.

    Thank you so much.

  24. This is so “Relevant” There are days, when I wonder if this is what I am to do at this time in my life. But then, what else would I do? Blogging/writing is what is in my hand to do at the moment, until the next project that shows up on my door. and so I speak. Perhaps to no one, but I speak. And I try to believe that there is purpose in the hours of work. and so I empty myself. Until He fills me again.

  25. How is it, Lisa-Jo, that you always have the right words at the exact right time? You are so “in”couraging and have a point-of-view that is reassuring and easy. I have been struggling with how to continue my own blog…my desire is there, and so are tons of ideas. But there is also uncertainty, fear, and self-doubt. Thank you for being the boost I needed today! Peace and blessings to you always!

  26. Lisa-Jo you are soooo right. God’s word tells us that he left the 99 to find the 1. The 1 matters. God give us words to share. And He leads those that need to hear, to our words. Thankful that He led me to your(His) words today.

  27. Well, I had so much to say in response to your post……..but then I stopped, pulled up a chair, grabbed my coffee and read. It has all been said, I echo the same sentiments of many of the other “commenters”. I thought, well no sense in commenting at all, but I realized I still wanted to say THANK YOU, thank you. I was just gently reminded that I am not alone, my feelings are not unique, and that we are all in this together. Cheers.

    • Oh Clover, you made me smile! 🙂 And I’m so glad you left a comment anyways even if you felt it had all been said – because it hadn’t been said by you and each voice is unique and fellowship is always better when shared. So I’m so glad you put your feet up and joined the jabber here 🙂

  28. I am not a blogger, but do teach bible study and found myself discouraged from the number of ladies who kept notifying me that they would NOT be attending today! This and time on my knees helped shift my perspective away from those who would NOT be there to those who WOULD! THANKS!!!

  29. Great words, Lisa-jo. I am praying for you and all the other ladies and gents who are attending the Relevent Conference…. I pray the more seasoned girls take the “girls in the corner” under their wing and give them the push they are waiting for. 🙂

  30. I can tell you that I am not as into all the social media as many are, but I thoroughly enjoy being part of the online community of believers. I am not on FB or Twitter, and I turned my blog into a format that works better for me than the traditional blog format, but this is how God led me as a writer. I love the diversity He allows us as we all explore this whole new world of technology that is now a way of life to the younger generation and a more of a challenge to the older ones such as myself! It is definitely a tool we can all use for His good and to bless those around us, however we fit into the social media picture.

    I think In Courage has definitely found a good balance as you use social media the way you do, but you also encourage us to keep those real life relationships going on around us also. It seems we can have the best of both worlds!

  31. So true and so encouraging. As a good friend reminds me … we must be faithful in the sphere of influence he has given us whether it is 5 or 5,000.

  32. Excellent, excellent words, changes the focus to what it should be, with astute illustrations to building on sand or rock hard foundations of love. Thank you! I needed to hear this.

  33. Thanks for this post. It’s more important to let God use me as He sees fit. I shouldn’t let myself get caught up in the size of my audience. Having readers is an added bonus, a blessing. My focus needs to stay on the message. I don’t even need to worry about whether or not a post will be liked. If I’m writing what God tells me to write, then it will be right.

    The Relevant Conference sounds amazing. I hope to attend one day.

  34. And may I add as a fairly new person to this site—–many people may read and be touched by your words but do not comment. I am one of them. Often my thoughts seems redundant to those who have already posted so I don’t. Maybe I should but if I don’t comment, I can’t be the only one which means you sweet ladies are touching far more people than you know. I read every blog posted on this site daily and God has used it in my walk with him. Each blog is different—some may hit home more than others but ALL are a blessing to me! Thank you!!!!! Just wanted you to know because there ARE the “Silent” ones (like me), who God touches through the stories you share and the words you write–

  35. I love this post as it is so true and so important to understand. We all have a story to tell and when that story reaches even one person we should consider that a success. God will use each story to touch particular lives (those He hand selects), in His perfect time.

  36. Thank you. Yes, sometimes our stories are only for one or two. And, if God chooses just he few, we are to be content with what He provides. There are times when I feel like I am on another wave length from others. Yet, there is always one who comments and ins blessed.

  37. Perfect. Community — love spilling across the page, words just a screen away, a chair scooted closer to the table, lives, hearts, faith nurtured and shared. Love it! What a beautiful image of the possible! Thank you.

  38. Hi Lisa-Jo!!

    So many times I read your blogs and stories about every day life and truly you are just like rain drops quenching a parched landscape!! Isn’t it funny how we can be so blessed to say what one person needs to hear that day….with no knowledge on our part of what our audience might be longing to hear, similarities to share with someone, problems to identify with…, we share our lives and our stories and lives and touch others. Our God is good. I’ve been writing my blog for over a year now. It’s hard to not be disappointed when you don’t have many hits or comments on a story you so lovingly wrote, but in time there will be someone who comes along and reads it I have found. It’s also hard when you put a lot of effort into writing a blog out, and you have a ton of hits and 1 comment!! I’ve been on both ends of the spectrum with that!! I made a Facebook fan page not too long ago, and at first I had quite a bit of feedback, and then it dropped off….and there are days where I wonder why I bother, and I sulk around and think “Geeze, I could talk to myself at home without writing it all out online” but writing is my passion, and sharing my world, my life, my lessons I’ve learned, is what I feel led to do, so I will continue and try to learn to put “that side” , the one who wants attention for what I do, on the back burner, and do what I’m led to!! Sending hugs your way today!!

    Carol

    • You and me both, Carol. I have those same arguments in my head until I remember that people are lovely and funny and I can easily spend a whole day with just one girlfriend and it’s fabulous. Why then can’t I do the same online? I think I can. I think we all can. And be so blessed in the process!

  39. I love the line that speaks to feeding the hungry who are already there. Often in the blogging world we fixated on those who are yet to read our blog. It’s a shame that causes us to lose sight of those that already enjoy our work. Thank you for the humble reminder!

    Cheers!
    Heather @ Find That Warm Fuzzy Feeling

  40. Once again, you hit the spot. This and your other recent post about stats really spoke to me, as I struggle with this issue (and resulting jealousy of others who are more “successful”). The Lord has spoken to me through you, through a couple others, and through His voice in my spirit , that the quality of the relationships I make and maintain through blogging is more important than the quantity. Thanks, Lisa-Jo!

  41. Thank you~
    You know, there are some hungry ones who live right here in my house. They need to hear the stories God is writing in my heart and they need me to listen to theirs. If my writing is only to sort the jumble of thoughts into stories for them, it is good and enough.

  42. God has brought just the right people across my path at just the right moments – both for them and for me. I know He is able. Our words are just words, until He takes hold of them and flings them into space.

  43. I feel God may be calling an army of writers…since so much of what we do is electronic…blogging seems to be the perfect venue to get His word to the people. As a “baby” writer, I appreciate the thoughts you have expressed here. One question I keep asking, “What makes me think that anyone will want to read what I write.” But, with God as my confidence and purpose, I know He will connect this writer to the readers that need to hear what He wants to say through me. Even for only one. Truly, thank you!

  44. You nailed it. Thanks so much for these words that my heart so desperately needed. I am constantly giving up writing because it just doesn’t feel worth it…NO ONE (who really cares) READS THIS ANYWAY!!
    After reading this post, I got to thinking. My two Aunts who are unbelievers are faithful blog readers…a friend from my high school found my blog and actually decided to follow Christ after reading one post…someone I have never met sent me a message genuinely thanking me for being vulnerable and transparent in my writing. She wasn’t even trying to get me to follow her back.
    So, today…after quitting (for the 39th time)… I think I’ll sit down and write something. Even if it is just for Aunt Mary.

  45. Thanks for this encouraging reminder. Sometimes I lose sight of the possibilities that exist when we put our life out there. I forget about the fact that, if the Lord uses even one post to influence the heart of one reader, it is worth it. And, the truth is, I like writing them, so why isn’t that enough? Thanks again.