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Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Blogging Break


**Scroll down for 2 updates to this post.**

Where to begin? Hmmm...

I'm taking a blogging break.

I've been praying about this for months now. The Lord started nudging my heart a while back about how much time I spend blogging. However, in typical Staci fashion, I was fighting it (read: Him) tooth and nail. I like blogging. I like deal finding. I like helping others, but it has become increasingly evident that I need to take a break. I've actually been walking around all week trying to write this post in my head. All the while, I've been asking the Lord to confirm this decision for me. I asked Him to scream it loud and clear about which direction I should go. To blog or not to blog. This is the question. Let's just say that this has been a doozy of a week (er, months) and this morning was the last straw. Ok, Lord. I hear ya.

When I first started blogging, I did it for me. I kept blogging because it was an easy way to keep my family, friends and church members in the loop about the deals I would come across. I eventually felt the nod to start teaching classes since some folks learn better that way. Teaching classes was actually the only time that I really asked God's opinion. I kept blogging because I thought classes & blogging went together. Somewhere in the middle of all that, my reasons changed. Blogging became an escape for me. On days when I felt like I could do nothing right as a wife or mother, I could at least talk about couponing. I knew I was good at that. On days when things weren't so peachy at home, I could escape with my laptop and scour the web for deals and share them. It made me feel good. It still does. Even after I moved past the point of escape, I continued blogging out of perceived obligation. I had come this far, why stop now. Other folks are depending on me. Lately, it has become a chore. We have had a lot going on in 2010 and my blogging schedule has kind of complicated that. I honestly don't want to stop blogging, I just wish I had more time.

My daughter will be starting full time at a Montessori school this fall. I am super excited for her but I feel like this is the last summer I have left of her being little. I want to enjoy this summer with her. I want us to do fun things together and not be stuck at home because Mommy has to get out the latest batch of freebies or type up the Publix matchups. I also work part-time as a medical transcriptionist. Between that and blogging, it's like full-time hours. I've been trying to do it all and my quality of life is starting to suffer. Let it be known now and forevermore that I am not a super mom!

To be honest, it really doesn't make sense to me why God is asking me to change THIS area of my life. I know that other people find my website beneficial and things are finally starting to take off and grow. I also just got invited to attend an exclusive blogging conference with lots of opportunities. Besides, couponing makes me feel good. However, there is one thing I know for sure. Sometimes God's ways don't make sense to my feeble human brain. Through experience, I've learned that His timing and His path are much better than what I would chose for myself. As I grow, the Lord continues to show me that Staci can't fix it. Blah! Just so you know, this totally goes against my innermost being. I'm a fixer. I'm a planner. Darn it!

A few months ago my husband and I declared that this year we would SIMPLIFY. I don't know that I have been holding up my end of the bargain. By ignoring God's gentle nudges, I've probably been making it worse and I am humbled by this realization.

For now, I will still be couponing in my own life. Couponing is a way of life and I don't think it will ever change now that I've sipped the kool-aid. I will still be teaching classes but I'm gonna cut out the day-to-day blogging part. I still like to share, answer questions, and help newbies so it may not be uncommon to see something occasionally show up on here, Facebook or Twitter. I'm still here. I just need to breathe. I need to focus on what God is trying to show me. I need to spend both quality and quantities of time with my family. Ideally, I am hoping that once Skylar starts school this fall I will have ample amount of time on my hands and I will be back in full force, but only if God gives me the a-okay this time.

A wise friend of mine recently told me that if two choices both look good, you should choose the one that you can un-do if things don't work out. I can always start blogging again but I can't get back precious moments and time lost with my family. I also want to make the choice that will glorify the Lord the most. This is one of those times where it doesn't make sense to me but I'm gonna trust Him and follow the lead of the Holy Spirit. Then, I'm gonna stand back, watch His provision cover me and let Him soak up my praise for His awesomeness.

Update (06/01/10): I just wanted to say thank you to every one who has been so supportive and encouraging of my little blogging break. You wanna know something really cool about the whole thing? I posted this just 4 days before the Nashville Flood started and my neighborhood was one of the worst hit areas. Now, I could have NEVER known what we were in for, but the Lord knew. He always knows. He knew that I absolutely, positively could not have maintained my blogging schedule while the waters rose and then later as the demolition of homes all around me began. While we, miraculously, did not sustain any damage to our home (Praise You Lord!!), we had plenty of opportunities to serve others. I am so thankful for His protection during that weekend (there were some scary moments) and thankful that He could foresee the future and saved me from any extra undue stress. I still miss blogging but I am enjoying extra time with my family. I am really looking forward to this fall and getting back into the groove. I hope everyone has a fantastic summer!

Update (07/07/09): The Lord has confirmed my decision once again. Today, it dawned upon me that I was supposed to be on my way to Colorado to attend the Savvy Blogging Summit. There is absolutely no way that I would have been able to board that plane this morning. You see, some very dear friends of mine lost their child earlier this week. I would have never been able to leave town knowing that they need my support and my help right here at home. I am so thankful how the Lord goes before us AND behind us. He knows what is coming when we don't. This decision never made sense to me in the beginning but it is becoming increasing clear. Thank you Lord for always having my best interest at heart and for protecting me from things unseen. Forgive me when I doubted your plan and fought your nudging in the beginning. I am grateful for the time and ability to be able to serve my friends in love.
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10 comments:

robin said...

I am new to couponing and your site. I love your heart and God will reward your obiedence. yes, we can NEVER get back those times we could have spent with our loved ones. Thanks for your honesty as it hit close to home for me as well. I would love to attend one of your classes. where are you teaching. Thanks for giving of yourself to help others and God bless you abundantly!! robin
redeemedbyhim@comcast.net

Leslie said...

I will miss your blog, but you will never regret your decision when you follow God's leading. As a mother of grown children, I know too well that you will never get this time back. When you look at the big picture of life, what matters most? Thanks for your stand and for the encouragement you have shown so many.

lsiafleming said...

Wow, thanks for your transparency. (sp?) It is soooo true, we can't turn the clock back. I was just studying Abraham this morning, God asked Him to do alot of things that just didn't make sense, but look where he ended up... on the receiving end of sooo many blessings and fulfilled promises. I pray the same for you.

Christine said...

You're awesome !!! Wish you nothing but the best and hope you guys have a GREAT summer !!! =)

Hoback Family said...

some of the greatest blessings in my life have come from decisions that didn't make sense but I knew that I was clearly being led to make them. You can't go wrong when you follow your heart and the Lord's leading! If I can say so in the deepest of encouragement, I'm so proud of you Staci for taking this step that I know was hard for you to take. I wish you much joy in this freedom that you are seeking with an honest heart! :) :)

Robert and Hannah said...

aww Staci... I'm so proud of you for listening to God and following Him when it seemingly makes no sense. He's going to bless you for that!! <3

Anonymous said...

Staci-good for you girl! You are a blessing to us all and we appreacite all your hard work on your blog! Enjoy your time with loved ones! I will miss your blog but you have taught me so much so I can fly on my own! Thank you! I love Isaiah 40:31!

Staci said...

You ladies are very sweet! It's hard to be transparent for hundreds of people but I started this blog to be an inspiration to others. Today it was just in a different form with a little deeper look into my life. Sometimes that can be ouchy but it's easier when you all have been so encouraging. Thank you.

Sandra Winfrey said...

I commend you for listening to the Lord's gentle nudging. I KNOW sometimes it doesn't make sense why God will place this in our heart and brain, but it will make sense in the end.

God bless you good and faithful servant!

xoxo ~ Sandy

Mary @ The Writer's Block said...

Staci,

Hello! I'm in Nashville, too. Just found you and your blog from the #sbsummit stream on Twitter. Wanted to say hello and let you know how much I love this post and your heart.

I am going to the Summit. Funny, I'm praying that the Lord will reveal to me--through the Summit--exactly what he wants me to do with my blog, online time, etc. I'm really going (trying to!) without an agenda and praying for the Lord's epiphany. Blogging can be so addictive, can't it? And I love how you say it's an escape. Yes!

Anyway--would love to meet you IRL. There's a group of us who meet occasionally for discussion and fellowship. We have a group on Facebook: Nashville Women Who Blog.

Take care!

my email: maryb1517 [at] gmail [dot] com.