Branch Out, But Stay Rooted

Nearly five years ago, I started my blog, Earl Grey and Yellow. I intended for it to be part hobby project, part therapeutic creative outlet after I got injured and couldn’t run anymore.

After the first year or so, my passion for writing developed into a desire to make it more than a hobby. I quickly learned to love encouraging my readers through a Christian lens. The creative process invigorates me in ways my job as a high school teacher doesn’t. Eventually, I hope to transition to writing full-time.

The blog opened up a few opportunities to be a guest on the radio and keynote speaker at a few Christian women’s events. It felt good to be able to share encouragement based on my own experiences and develop an audience for my work.

Another year or so slipped by, and I branched out by becoming a writer on Medium.com. Medium is a collective of freelance writers who share their work in a variety of niches. They can even make a little bit of money doing it.

Writing on Medium has allowed me the opportunity to write about education, parenting, writing, and other topics in addition to my faith-based content on Earl Grey and Yellow. I felt I had things to say about a number of topics and knew branching out was the answer.

This spring, I launched my author website, www.tracygcooper.com. I’m currently working on several short stories and have most of my first novel written. I branched out once again. My author site points readers outside Earl Grey and Yellow’s audience to other things I’m working on.

At my core, I am a Christian writer. Though everything I write isn’t about my faith, my faith informs everything I write. Branching out is good, but I am aware of how important it is to remain rooted in my faith.

As I plan for growing into a career as a writer, I want my faith in Christ to shine through, even if I’m not sharing Bible verses or talking about Christian topics.

I’m drawn back to passages of scripture reminding me to stay rooted in Jesus in order to do all I dream of doing.

“Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.” (Colossians 3:23-24, NIV)

No matter where my writing journey takes me, I must keep my faith in Jesus as the cornerstone. Though recognition and success are enjoyable, I ultimately give God all the glory for my work. Whether it is successful or not, I offer it to Him.

“I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.” (John 15:5, NIV)

And so I stay on the vine, growing because I’m nourished by the Spirit. It is here we are promised to be bearers of good fruit. Branching out is good, but only if we stay rooted.

With Love and Gratitude,

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