• who is my tribe?

    filed under: Blogging on January 23, 2015

    When I am passionate about something I go after it with everything in me.  Sometimes I forget to ask God if this is what He has in mind, and I end up getting rejected and hurt in my pursuit to reach earthly dreams. In those cases I fully take all the blame and know that next time I need to make prayerful decisions!

    But blogging, blogging is different.  At least, blogging for me is.


    photo credit

    See, my main blog is about baking.  Apparently baking isn’t considered a Christian topic. For years (and years and years) I have been rejected by the Christian blogging community. I am not faithful enough. I don’t talk about God enough. I don’t focus on Christianity enough.

    On the flipside, the food blogging world has had a heck of a time accepting me too. To them I talk about God way too much.  I have stories around my recipes that are way to flowery.  I don’t swear and don’t align myself and outwardly support some liberal views. I don’t make everything farm to table. I don’t make everything from scratch. My blog is just not “foodie” enough.

    For years and years I have quietly endured this grey line of rejection and doubt, not wanting to be defined as anything other than I am yet not knowing how to do that.

     Should I remove the “i am servant” section of my blog? Should I start a separate blog for faith stuff? Should I not talk about God and not make my beliefs known and not offer up prayers or seek prayers for others?

    Should I ONLY talk about God? Should “i am baker” cease to exist if it is not promoting God like it should?

    If the very same people who love, trust and believe in Jesus just like I do think I am not doing enough to promote the Christian community, then they must be right! I mean, these are His children!


    I have laid awake in bed at night, wondering if it’s enough for Him. Wondering how else I can possibly further His kingdom, and not be so wrapped up in mine.

    I have conformed, slightly, to a secular blogging world.  My recipes share less and less about God and more and more about calibrated ovens and the best chocolate cake recipes.

    Then again, I have promoted my faith even more lately. I started a new “Daily Vlog” called Baking, Thinking & Praying where I share daily prayers and ask for any prayer requests.

    I wrote a best selling book and dedicated it to my Heavenly Father. I made a “Faith Cake” with a cross in the center and wrote ad nauseam about my #fangirl antics about Beth Moore. (To which I received a personalized THANK YOU card for which blessed my socks off. #teamBeth)

    But that was not enough to interest Christian book sellers.

    Most recently, I reached out to a Christian bloggers conference and let them know that I would be very interested in speaking.  The focus of their conference is “to engage women by teaching blogging techniques and social media skill while also urging and encouraging women to live fully integrated lives with their faith and family.

    THIS IS ME. This is what I do. This is what I live. I GOT THIS!

    For the first time in my life, and no I am not exaggerating nor lying, for the first time in my life I have full confidence in my ability and value.

    I know social media, I know how to teach social media, I know how to teach others to use social media in an influential way, and most importantly, I know Jesus. I serve Him, I adore Him, I talk with Him all throughout my day and try to make Him a part of everything I do.

    Well, I sent off my “pitch” email the conference.  Giddy doesn’t describe it! The excitement was obvious to everyone around me.

    The conference is not to be held for at least another 8 months and I knew I had a good chance at being considered. Most conferences are finalizing details and speakers days before the event is to be held! In my mind, this conference and this opportunity were exactly where God has me headed! I could not wait to be surrounded by like-minded women who are also passionate about living for Him.

    Today the reply arrived.

    “Hi Amanda, Thank you for inquiring, but our speaking roster is already full. Good luck with your work”

    My heart sank. Like, really really sank. Reading more into that response more than I should have, I feel like the rejection is not based in a full speaking roster, but in that they were simply not interested in me.

    There was no, “So great to hear from you… this conference is full but we will consider you for the next.” Hope was not conveyed.  It was just, no.

    No. There is no room for you at this inn.


    Not knowing my tribe, not being able to really fit in any community is taking a toll. The rejected tired mom of five in me wants to throw in the towel and tell them that they have won.  They are right, that I am not enough.

    But the voice of truth tells me a different story. I know I have value. (Not something I could have ever said 1 year ago) I know I have a message, even if specific folks do not think they need nor want to hear it. I know that God has given me a platform and that there IS purpose in what I do.

    This will definitely be a daily uphill battle of faith, but He is doing a mighty work in me. And I can’t help but hope that someday, these same people who label me as not enough, will surely see that I am.


    Thank you Jesus, for being all the tribe I will ever need.  Thank you for using all of this to dredge up and discard everything that hinders Your likeness in me. (credit for that amazing sentence to Debi from barefaith.com)


    I talked about the follow up reply in my DailyVlog. Yes, she wrote back and yes she told me…

    just go check it out. 🙂

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    I simply wanted to let you know that I originally found your blog because of your amazing recipes, several of which I’ve thoroughly enjoyed. I came to enjoy your blog even more, however, when I found I could relate to you on a more personal level because of shared faith and family values. I remember being in awe of your All Saints Day cookies, which I thought were the neatest thing. 🙂 One of my favorite verses that has really helped me with some challenges in the past year is, “Let your hope keep you joyful, be patient in your troubles and pray at all times.” (Romans 12:12) That about covers every aspect of life for me.

      Love this Kerry… what a fitting and beautiful verse!


    Hi Amanda, I just want to say that you are an inspiration to me. I only stumbled on your blog recently and I quickly subscribed to it. I am a Christian and I love baking/cake decorating. I see a lot of successful bakers but very few of whom are professing Christians. So whenever I see or read about a cake baker/decorating who is also a professing Christian, something in me leaps for joy. Keep doing what you’re doing as long as in your spirit, you know it is right.
    You can’t satisfy everyone. We are all different with our own idiosyncrasies. Not even Jesus could (I know it’s an old cliche). Point is, even though you can’t satisfy everyone, there are those whom you inspire and bless with your work and ministry.
    Thanks for taking the time to bless us with your work.

    Amanda, I’ve only recently started following you but I have to tell you how inspiring you are to me both as a food blogger and as a follower of Christ. I admire how “raw” you are about your struggles and successes.

    I think people who would criticize your work as a food blogger don’t understand the virtuous woman of Proverbs 31. She is clearly an entrepreneurial woman who makes wise decisions in business matters, provides for her family, and is a woman of strength. No where in that passage do we see a woman who sits around in a locked room in seclusion being “Christian” all day. I think God’s point here is that we apply HIs Word to every aspect of our lives, which includes cooking, and baking, and blogging, and exercising, and taking care of our families, and plain enjoying life!

    Whatever the naysayers may say, I think you’ve got it right. Thanks for inspiring me in your Christian testimony as a food blogger.

      I LOVE this Renee. You have inspired me to get in the word today and read Proverbs!!

    I just found your blog last year and have loved it and been so pleased to find the rare person who blogs with such creativity and inspiration and credits the one who gave her the gift! Yay for Him and Him IN you!

    For some reason I couldn’t find where the response was from the person who wrote back to you, but nevertheless, just wanted to encourage you to keep doing exactly what you’re doing!
    My husband is a preacher and simultaneously LOVES film-making and his heart wants so much to make films in this life, all while serving God. He struggles everyday with how to be who he is and make great art that moves people and inspires and gives people joy…without making a “Christian movie”, per se. Many critics have already come in the form of fellow Christians who won’t work with him because his story or directing isn’t “Christian enough” or others who want to make something too far on the other side of the spectrum. I truly believe there’s a real need for men and women who are full of art and creativity to fill the industries with light and love and a new way of thinking that does not alienate people or clobber them with the Word of God, but inspires and intrigues them to WANT to know this God of love and hope. May you continue to be exactly YOU as He created you to be!

      Sounds like you and your husband definitely get it Amy! Love your encouragement and kindness and am thankful for you! 🙂

    Me. I’m part of your tribe. I wrote a long elegant response, then erased it.
    I’m just a girl doing the best I can as a believer, living in a broken and dying world. God knows me and loves me and it doesn’t matter who else does. There is so much freedom in that.

    I love your heart and I totally understand what you’re talking about. Trust Him, follow Him, and be true to who you are. It’s who He knit you together to be. Embrace it. We’ll never be enough, that’s why He saved us.


      Honored to be a part of your tribe. You certainly have got some pretty amazing advice. 🙂

    He tells us that He is our portion. You keep on keeping on, girl . . . and with God’s blessings!

    Hi Amanda, I can sympathise with your feelings of rejection, but you know what..God gave you the gifts that you have, and THAT is why you are so good at what you do:). I too had to make up my mind as to whether to admit that I am a committed Christian on my business facebook page ..and I thought of the scipture Luke 9:26.. no way am I ashamed of Christ! I endeavour to tell everybody I can and so yes I did write a comment on my business facebook page alerting people to the fact. I love your heart for our Lord, Amanda you are good at what you do ,,just keep doing it.:)

    Dear Amanda,
    I stumbled upon your blog a few years ago while looking for a recipe. As I began to explore other portions of the blog, which for me is saying something because I am NOT usually a fan of blogs, nor am I a blogger, I found myself captivated by your words, photographs, recipes, and most of all, your faith. Since that moment, I became a fan. I try your recipes constantly, and look forward to reading your blog every day. I thank God for you and your messages that never cease to inspire me, and for the example of the Godly woman that you are. Don’t change a thing. Your “critics” don’t know what they’re missing!

    Dear Amanda, I came across your blog a few months ago and really love your honesty and openness in your blog, especially when you talk about your faith. I love it that you don’t try to be preachy or present yourself as the perfect Christian, but as an honest follower & lover of Jesus, with everyday struggles. I really love your cakes and recipes, yo u are very creative. Because of your blog, it spark an interest in me to start baking. Don’t stop what you are doing. You go girl! 🙂

    Amanda Shalom (Hello)! Just came across your website. I can understand your thoughts. . . As we all have all things in common. Know that you are not alone. Remember one of the things that the apostle Paul spoke in one of his epistles which stated that if we are to live godly lives united with Jesus Christ than you can expect to be persecuted and suffer, you can even expect to be hated in this world as Jesus/Yeshua spoke. For evil people and impostors will go from bad to worse, deceiving others and being deceived themselves. For this world has the prince of the power’s of the air (our adversary satan,ruling over to kill, steal and destroy us, and is still at work in the disobedient, but our LORD JESUS/YESHUA has come that we may have life and more abundantly. Keep Strong in the LORD and the Power of HIS MIGHT for He is Faithful and True. Trust in HIM at all times, for HE will not fail you, Amanda. For HE Loves you so much and has given you Life in Himself. Would like to share with you also something that the LORD spoke and told me early on in my walk and fellowship with Him. Your value DOES NOT depend upon what others think of you. It DOES NOT depend on you being married or single. It DOES NOT depend on rather you have kids or not. For our Heavenly Father is the ONLY ONE WHO brings us worth and value and it is in Him, through Him, with Him, and for Him, ONLY! He is the lifter of y(our) head and y(our) glory (strength)! Continue to draw close to Him and His Word and Love abiding in you Amanda. His Hand is upon you and He will guide you to the path of HIS RIGHTEOUSNESS as we continue to yield to HIM. I hope this encourages you and helps build you up in His word and truths. God bless you Amanda and happy baking! Shalom Aliekhim! (peace be upon you!)

    Don't Pass on Dessert!