(Friends, I feel that Mia’s interview was awesomesauce. I’m still reflecting on her words about the power that writers have. We, writers, have the power to impact other folks by sharing our unique stories. Yet, if we leave our stories buried in our tummies, we do not impact anyone. Word! Now, I would like to introduce y’all to Elsie, a writer/blogger/fashionista, who is aware of the power of the personal story. I actually found Elsie through Naomi, and I was intrigued by her challenges with an eating disorder. The social worker in me just lit up at her strength and reliance on God through her journey of healing. Check out how Elsie brings inspiration and fashion together in her blog. Blessings, Monica aka afrotasticlady)
Monica aka afrotasticlady: On your blog, you tackle faith, fashion, and social issues. What made you start blogging?
Elsie: Hi Monica! I originally started blogging back in 2013 because I was interested in what the Bible had to say about the realm of psychology and emotions. A blog seemed like a natural place to begin working out answers to my questions, because blogs invite discussion, and I craved other people’s input. I have a natural interest in psychology, but as the discipline currently stands, it is often stripped of the power of God’s Word. So I wanted to do the work and study to figure out what God has to say about the everyday world of our emotions.
I have always adored fashion and putting together a cute outfit, but the idea of actually being a fashion blogger is still a bit intimidating! Some of my favorite big fashion bloggers like Sincerely Jules (www.sincerelyjules.com) andThe Sweetest Thing Blog (www.thesweetestthingblog.com), and smaller blogs by women of faith like Downtown Demure (www.downtowndemure.com) and Naomi Treviño (www.finite1.com) have inspired me so much, and given me hope that I can showcase my own feminine style to inspire others.
M: I admire your honesty about your challenges with an eating disorder and how Jesus delivered you from it. What led you to share your journey?
E: Aw, thank you Monica! After being through a nightmare like that, all you can do is talk everyone’s ear off, telling and retelling the story of your Savior and how He rescued you.
I deeply believe that being vulnerable within a loving Christian community leads to healing and wholeness. I don’t believe in keeping shameful secrets – they only fester and poison our spirits. So telling my “disordered eating” story on the blog is just one more way to be vulnerable and real with Christian women.
I know a lot of women struggle with varying degrees of disordered eating. My hope is that sharing my story of how God shined light in my dark places can bring hope and clarity to some other struggling women, and maybe it will even inspire them to share their own story in the context of a safe Christian community.
M: Labels are tricky and sometimes people would rather stay from them. Would you describe yourself as a blogger, a Christian blogger, or both?
E: I would indeed describe myself as a Christian blogger, and my intended audience is fashion-conscious Christian women. I suppose avoiding labeling oneself opens up the possibility for a broader audience. But for me personally, I’m not very interested in attracting readers who have no sense of spiritual hunger. I’m writing for people who do.
M: What do you love most about blogging?
E: I cherish the interaction with other women as I share my story. It’s incredible to meet women across the country who can relate in some way with what God is doing in my life.
Women are powerful; I doubt that we recognize the full weight of our power and influence. If all Christian women started thinking and loving like Jesus, I think it would absolutely change the world. So that’s the journey I’m on, learning how to be more like Jesus and inspire others in the process.
M: There are so many diverse blogs on the internet. Why do you think it is important for Christians to add their voice to the blogosphere?
E: With the explosion of the internet in the last couple of decades, blogs have become a primary way that people find information that feels relevant and practical to them.
I hope that Christians with all kinds of interests and expertise will make their voice heard through blogs. We need them; the world needs them. I believe we possess a message of love and truth that needs to be communicated in a way that feels relevant and practical in the electronically interconnected world we live in.
M: What advice or encouragement do you have for Christians who are new to blogging?
E: Ha! I think I myself am a Christian who is new to blogging! I wish I could pour raw courage into every weary heart, and whisper to not give up when it’s hard and takes a while to develop your unique voice and find your niche and develop a readership. I have read that many people start blogs but few keep at them more than a few months. Rough starts seem to be normal, but what separates the failed blogs from the successful blogs is perseverance and commitment to offering consistent value to your readers.
M: Elsie, thank you so much for sharing your thoughts! They are appreciated!
E: These were such great, thoughtful questions, Monica! So glad you and I have connected.
Elsie was once a homeschooled nerd kid with a backpack on wheels. Now she is an adult nerd who savors dark chocolate, soul-connection during one-on-one conversations, and watching God at work in the people around her. Elsie tracks her encounters with Jesus and fashion on her blog, ToLiveIsChristBlog.com.
Social Media Handles
Twitter: @ElsieLondon1 https://twitter.com/ElsieLondon1
Instagram: @elsie_london https://www.instagram.com/elsie_london/twi