For the past year, I have been hearing and seeing a great deal of information related to the Creator Economy. It has been growing exponentially, for the past couple of years. There is just one problem. Many places focus on succeeding in secular arena; as opposed to areas like online Christian ministry. If you’re like me then you will appreciate discovering the insights provided by “Blogging for God’s Glory in a Clickbait World“.
What if I am a YouTuber or podcaster? What about us? I create contents for my YouTube channel and my blog site. I can easily see this book’s potentials for creators working in those area. For me, it is a book that I wished that I read in 2009. The book would have been quite helpful. Keep reading and I’ll share what I mean!
First, it would help to know who the authors are. This book is written by Benjamin Vrbicek & John Beeson. Benjamin is a teaching pastor at Community Evangelical Free Church in Harrisburg, PA. He’s also a published author and blogger. You can see his works on his blog site, Fan & Flame. As for John Beeson, he is Co-Lead Pastor at New Life Bible Fellowship in Tucson, Arizona. Interestingly enough, John calls his blog site, “The Bee Hive”.
Though they are in a different stream, I felt it to be a good idea to show that these two guys do have a background in blogging. For me, it is nice to see that they didn’t disappear after a short season. In fact, Ben had just published a new book review. You can read it on his blog site.
This book review is going to be more of a reaction and thoughts on what these two pastors covered in their book. For many new content creators, the focus tends to be on the income generated by their blog site, YouTube channel or podcast. If we are talking about a food blog, a tech channel or a podcast centering on politics then books like “ProBlogger by Darren Rowse” or Derral Ewe’s “The YouTube Formula: How Anyone Can Unlock the Algorithm to Drive Views, Build an Audience, and Grow Revenue ” will certainly be of value to such content creators.
However, there is just one problem with both of these great resources. Their focus is on earning a high income and it is possible, if you are in the right niche. What happens when you are called to do online ministry? While it is possible to earn an income in creating contents for an online ministry, it is nowhere near the six-figure income the above two books talk about. Heck, I wished that they had covered that point!
As for Benjamin and John, I am thankful that someone took the time to say something about this very important topic! Thought I already knew the truth, it is great to see it spoken in a loving and right fashion. I can also see that they did their homework and discovered that there are some people who do derive some kind of income. As a hope-filled realist, I appreciate this kind of optimism rooted in truth.
It’s this type of truth that you’ll find throughout the whole book. Here’s another tip that I’m glad to see that they mentioned in the book. John & Benjamin are correct to point to the reality that money should not be your primary motive for getting into online ministry or any other type of online business. With online ministry, it is important to keep our focus on Jesus and not our own ambitions.
How does one do this? Along with Benjamin and John, I’d like to echo a following point. Don’t rush into it! Unlike the other niches, you will need to spend time in the Word of God. It doesn’t stop there. It is also helpful to spend time in prayer, worship and spending time in God’s presence! It needs to be done on a daily basis. Why? Have you not read? Have you not heard?
12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.Ephesians 6:12 ESV
When it comes to online Christian ministry, it is important to realize that you’re walking into a spiritual war zone. For this reason, it is important to put on the full armor of God and stand firm in prayer. It’s also vital to approach our effort to create content in a spirit of humility. For our blog posts, YouTube video or podcast could be the thing that God uses to help someone. At the same time, we have to live in the uncertainty of not knowing.
In reviewing the Table of Content, I can see that the authors are not fans of chasing the news cycle; rather we’re to focus on what God calls you and I into doing. It does make sense and the temptation to chase after what’s popular is a strong one. I did something like that for this blog site. What’s the result? Nothing! It failed to bring in new traffic or interest in my other content. A part of the problem is the article was out of character for what visitors would find on my blog site.
Sometime later, I reviewed a recently released book and it was trending in my niche. Guess what? It worked fine because I’ve already done book reviews and it was in sync with what’s found on my YouTube channel and blog. Am I contradicting myself? Not really. One of the many key points made in the book is the need to develop a filter for what goes on your blog, YouTube channel or a podcast.
A good filter is the Holy Spirit and the Word of God. Ask Jesus about what you are proposing to write? Let the peace of Christ rule over your heart and let the Holy Spirit be the umpire. Keep in mind, you are not writing to please Man; rather it is to please God. Don’t be afraid to talk to Jesus. I can assure you that you’ll be surprised. Learn to trust the guidance of the Holy Spirit.
Here’s another needed pearl of truth and wisdom. The work of a content creator is a job that requires a lot of time and effort. You’ll often be doing the main work, by yourself. Yet, we are not exempt from having a circle of brothers and sisters in Christ that can help in the work of creating contents for the glory of God. They can provide a certain level of accountability and help in the behind the scene work that goes into each piece of content.
Before you rush out and grab a bunch of friends, I’d like to give you, some tips. Pray and seek God’s wisdom before you start rounding up the troop! Not everyone is going to be a good fit; hence it is best to start with talking to Jesus. God is quite capable of directing your steps to the right person. Truth is, you really need to be doing two things before getting a team.
All good blogs, YouTube channels, and podcast begin with a God given vision. Yes, it sometimes helps to put your “why” on a simple napkin. “Keep it short and simple”. Here’s where I’ll seem to differ from the authors. They are pastors at a church and fellow blogger. For me, I have disabilities and a lot freer time. In other words, the immediate need for a team is a lot greater for them than it is for me.
Each person has to assess their own schedule for posting content and discover their limitations. Contrary to popular myths, content creators can’t do everything. There are activities that needs to be outsourced or given to others in your local church. It’s okay to receive help. Here’s another way a team can help and I got it, from the author.
For instance, you could have someone help by doing some research on upcoming topics or guests. Planning upcoming guests. How about thumbnails, titles, keywords and so forth? You’ll still help to do the main work, alone. However, it won’t be quite so lonely. Plus, you’ll have people who will know what’s happening and cover you, in prayers. These tips are found in the book and I’ve only skimmed over it.
Here’s the final part that I’ll cover. Thankfully, Benjamin and John are not so heavenly minded that they forgot to cover the reality of income. There is an entire chapter on the 4 key ways to earn an income. In case you did not notice, it cost money to work as a content creator. Somehow, we have to pay for a web hosting site, podcast hosting site, domain name and so forth. Yes, the author does cover this important truth.
You’ll learn about income generators like patrons or donor support, affiliate programs, Google AdSense, and sponsorship. The authors do use slightly different phrasing but it is the same thing. Again, it is always a good idea to seek God’s direction in this department.
Again, I happily recommend this book for any beginner or a refresher for experienced content creators. I definitely appreciated reading this book and it’s nice to see a refresher. Before I forget, this book is available on Audible, Amazon e-book and paperback.