This month marks my one year blog anniversary. September 4th to be exact was the day I finally pushed published on my website and committed to this ministry. Before entering the blog world, I wanted to prepare and researched and tried to learn everything I could about blogging.
In my research a prominent question kept coming up. “Why do you want to blog?” This question would be the foundation of my purpose for this blog. Keeping in mind my why has helped me keep going past difficult situations that would otherwise make me consider quitting.
So that’s what I would love to share with you today. The reasons why I blog, what I’ve learned, and what you can expect from ReeCreation Ministries in the near future.
Why I Blog
I had a list of nearly 10 reasons why I should start a blog. However, it came down to the two main purposes that really established my vision and mission for ReeCreation Ministries. Those two reasons are to share how God has transformed my life and to encourage other women.
To share how God has transformed my life
One of the things I’ve always enjoyed was art, particularly therapeutic art or art journaling. It has really been a help in processing my mental, emotional, and spiritual needs. In my work with youth in the mental health and special education, art was always something I incorporated.
Leaving the workforce to become a stay-at-home mom full time I decided to try my hand at blogging. It started as a place to post my art journal exercises online. Something I can have as reference to share with others who might want to try therapeutic art. I jumped right in without much research on how to start a blog. That first blog was a fail, of which I’m thankful for. From that experience I was able to re-evaluate why I should start a blog – and what do I have to blog about.
I realized God was asking me to share more than just the art exercises. I was being compelled to share the reasons behind the art. Which was partly to help me cope with my depression and anxiety.
Growing up in the church gave me plenty of opportunities to share about what God has done in my life. Unfortunately there was always a part of my story that I would leave out. A part of my story I felt too ashamed to tell. That was about my struggle with mental illness.
In finally learning to address the struggle, and get the appropriate help for it – I was slowly able to share that part of my story. It began just by writing it down in a personal journal. For me to remember the goodness of God. But that’s what God wanted me to share with others.
In learning to share my story I realized two things:
Which leads me to the second reason why I blog:
To encourage other women
Once I began sharing my story other women opened up to me about their own struggles. They were thanking me for being willing to talk about mental illness. Women struggling with depression or anxiety felt seen and can relate to my story. They learned they were not alone. It also gave others the courage to share their own stories and struggle.
Many of these women were also part of the faith community. They too felt shame and stigma from being a Christian who struggled with mental illness. Through these encounters and experiences it became a passion to assist women on their journey of faith and mental health. I want to assure them that there is a safe space for addressing mental illness within the faith community. In fact that is God’s design for the church. To not only meet the spiritual or physical needs of the people, but also the emotional and mental needs.
What did I learn
I’ve certainly discovered there is a big learning curve to managing and running a website, and essentially a ministry. I am thankful for all the things I was able to learn within this first year of blogging.
Some things I learned about blogging is how I needed to get very specific on my focus and message. There are many topics and experiences I can certainly talk about. However, I realized quickly that the message and intent of the blog can get lost without a specific focus. Choosing to stick within the boundaries of faith and mental health allows me to have a clearer direction. This has helped me in planning and creating content for the blog. But even more so it allows me to connect with the right audience. The people I want to reach with this ministry.
Another thing about the blogging or in ministry is the importance of a supportive community. I’m so thankful to have learned about the different groups in the blogging world. I’ve met a variety of women experts in their field of ministry, or mental health, storytelling, social media, writing… etc. Not only have I learned from them, but the greatest gift it’s brought me is having their support. Especially other women entrepreneurs – they understand the work it takes.
I am also thankful for family, friends, and prayer warriors, who have gone along on this journey with me. They have provided so much love, encouragement, guidance and support that truly helped me keep going in this last year.
A year into this blogging journey I have also learned a few things about myself. I realize, though I knew God was calling me to do this – I still need a push to get out of my comfort zones. It takes a lot for me to be open and vulnerable about something I’d kept secret for nearly two decades.
Another thing I learned is that consistency is key. It can be easy to focus only on what I need to improve on, and let that stop me from showing up. But I learned that showing up, being consistent is the best way to learn and get better. I couldn’t make excuses not to work at this each day. When I’m committed to showing up, I am making myself available to help and encourage other women.
Perhaps the biggest thing I learned in the year of doing this has to do with my relationship with God. Now these things aren’t necessarily new to me in terms of who God is. This ministry just allowed me another opportunity to experience God in this way. One of those things was how faithful God is. I believe He called me to pursue this ministry. This burden and passion for it is from Him. Just as he’s been in the past, God has been faithful to equip me and guide me in this endeavor.
Something else I learned, about myself and God – is the difference quality time with Him makes.
I can easily get busy doing things for God, rather than just being with God.
I often needed the reminder to seek God first. Not for the sake of writing another article, or something to possibly teach someone. But just for the sake of knowing God and being in his presence. When my day is filled with time spent enjoying God’s presence it makes such a difference. It affects how I carry on in my relationship with my husband and children, as well as the ministry.
I had a friend say often “ it’s about progress not perfection.” I have since applied that in everything I did. It certainly fits well with blog and ministry. So my prayer for the next few months, and hopefully years is that I continue to make progress. That I would continue to grow first and foremost in my faith. But that I would also continue to increase my knowledge and skills in mental health, writing, and speaking, among other things. I dream to one day to see this ministry expand beyond the blog. Including working with more women 1 on 1 or in groups.
New Hope Trauma Healing
One of the ways I see the ministry expanding is through something called New Hope Trauma Healing. New Hope teaches people how to walk alongside others who are hurting. It gives them the tools to help guide others on their healing journey with God’s word.
Since participating in a training, I have led my own New Hope group, and plan to continue leading other groups. Holding New Hope healing groups, is something I foresee doing in the near future. I also plan to help train other leaders who want to learn how to assist others who are hurting.
If you’re interested in learning more about New Hope please sign up in the form below.
I am also in the process of writing my first book. In the book I share about my journey in discovering my true identity in Christ. For it is in knowing who we are in Christ that we can truly know and live out our purpose. My goal for the book is that it goes beyond just telling my story. I hope it would be a way to inspire other women to seek their identity in Christ.
If you would love to get a sneak peak and be part of the launch team, please sign up with the form below.
I also want to thank you all for being part of this journey with me. For reading along and allowing me to share my stories and the things God is teaching me. Thank you also for sharing your stories with me. I hope you see the power and healing in sharing your story and what God is doing in your life. I look forward to hearing more.