Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Building a Platform

I continually come across new words that are used in the writing/blogging world and one I see rather frequently is the word PLATFORM.

What is a platform? I'm a big fan of writer Jeff Goins and in one of his recent posts he answers this question.

"A platform is exactly what it sounds like: It’s a stage on which we stand to share a message. It's not an end to itself (i.e. "Hey, look at me and how great I am!"); its a means to an end.

We don’t build a platform to bring attention to ourselves — or at least we shouldn't. We do it to help people. To serve."

After reading Jeff's post, I open up my blog page and reflect on what stands out most. It's the words, Let all that you do be done in love. This was the platform I set out to build. A platform built on the foundation of love. And why should all you do be done in love? "We love because He first loved us." - 1 John 4:19

Jeff goes on to say that whatever platform you are building, make it about someone else and not about you. He writes, "Because the truth is we don't find our purpose in life by looking in the mirror. We find it by looking out the window."

When I look out the window I find God. He is the Someone else I want to share with you. And He is all about loving and serving others.

I feel convicted that maybe the words I share are still directed more inward. So much of what I write reflects how He is changing my heart. But are my words changing lives? As I write this post I hear God saying, "Listen to the words I've placed on your heart." And I read what I've written here and realize if my platform is to be about His love, I need to focus more on loving and serving others.

For some time, I've been sensing God directing me to step out of my comfort zone when serving. My church just announced an adult missions trip to Guatemala this summer and I knew God was handing me an opportunity to serve beyond what feels comfortable. I will be excited to share with you every step of this journey.

But I do believe that to serve we don't need to be called to a mission field. I'm reminded of a quote I shared in a post on my prior blog.

"We are not all called to mission fields far away. We are not all called to pastor a church or lead a women's Bible study. However there is one thing we are all called to do as God's people: we're all called to stop, to be aware of the hurting around us, and to have compassion. We are called to share our bread with the poor." - Julianna Morlet

As Jeff wrote, we only need to look out the window.

Lori L. Stalteri (Creative Commons)

So my challenge to myself will be to build a platform here that delivers a message of how God calls us to love and serve others. And when we respond to His call, our lives will be changed. Friends, let's be the hands and feet of Jesus.  

"Christ has no body on earth but yours, no hands but yours, no feet but yours. Yours are the eyes through which Christ's compassion for the world is to look out; yours are the feet with which He is to go about doing good; and yours are the hands with which He is to bless us now." - Saint Teresa of Avila

With all that being said, I still believe there is a place within my platform to share how He is continually changing my heart. For me to build a platform on the foundation of love, the strength of that foundation depends on how I view myself. If I struggle with loving who I am, how can I truly love another person? But thanks to God's unfailing love, I am learning to love myself and what He's teaching me needs to be shared.

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