A while back a friend of mine asked what the difference was between a platform and a blog. She thought her blog was her platform. In its entirety. Wouldn’t it be nice to live in that kind of vacuum? I want to bust that little myth wide open…to help you make the most of your platform. And this is not a blog tip post. I promise. Because you have a platform, whether you have a blog of your own or not. Every single person in history has a platform. All of God’s children have a platform.
What is your platform? It’s your connecting point to share your passions with others. Whether you are passionate about Jesus or cute shoes, you are connecting with people over the things that you love most. It includes every social media account you have, the communities you’re involved in…pretty much anywhere your words are flung out into the great wide world. Some of us have a small platform, others–like authors and celebrities–may have a global platform. What a huge responsibility!
So how are you supposed to make the most of your platform?
Last week I found a new hero. In fact, she ranks right on up there with Jen Hatmaker, Melanie Shankle and Lisa Harper in my book of favorite ladies. Her name is Candace Payne, but you might know her as the Chewbacca Mask Mom. Or “that lady with best giggle-guffaw in the history of ever” is what I like to call her.
She giggled her way into Facebook’s history as the most viral Facebook Live video to date. I laughed so hard I cried the first time I watched that video. And every time it floated through my newsfeed that day, I watched it again and again. Because she made me ludicrously happy. Do you know how many times I have seen someone get that excited over such a simple thing lately? None. I’m the mom of a teen and tween. There’s a lot of eye rolling and sighing going on in these parts and very little excitement in general.
At the end of her video in between gasps, she said, “It’s the simple joys.” And I wondered to myself if she might be a Christian momma just like me because of the way she said it. I secretly hoped she was. I clicked “Follow” on her FB profile because I could use a little more of her brand of happy in my life. There aren’t many Christians these days who give off a happy vibe.
As more of her story came to light, she quickly found her spot on my list of women I want to meet one day. And it’s not just because of her laugh that broke the internet. It’s because of her platform…her soapbox.
What I didn’t know about Candace Payne the first time I watched her giggle was that she actually is a Christian. I suspected that maybe she might be. But then there started to be “behind the scenes” and “what you didn’t know” teasers. I saw her Instagram full of amazingly detailed Bible Journaling entries, one of my favorite things. I saw that she’s a worship leader. She’s a speaker. She’s a graphic designer and artist and teacher. Her platform is wide and varied and beautifully diverse. And I just wanted to cheer her on when she shared how she wanted to use this little blip of fame as an important piece of that platform, but at the same time reminded her audience not to try to make a name for themselves, because Jesus is who we’re here to make a name for.
For most of us, that blip of fame will never come along. I’m completely content not to go there.
Instead, we’ll build onto our platform quietly, expanding here, adding on there as we’re called to do. We’ll continue to be women of faith, moms, wives, bloggers, friends, mentors, sisters, daughters. We’ll continue to speak when we think we’re heard and even when we question if anyone is listening at all. We’ll continue to share our Good News through our testimony and our daily lives. We’ll be joy-bringers and hope seekers in a world that seems to be full of the exact opposite. And maybe we’ll even try to be happy.
How can we use our platforms to make a difference in such a noisy world? I think it starts with one kind word. With eye contact. With kindness. And with a heart that says “It’s not about my name and my fame. It’s about Jesus and His name.” In the words of the brilliant Dr. Seuss:
Why fit in when you were born to stand out?