Is it possible to monetize a faith-based blog?
It’s a question I’ve seen come up repeatedly in faith-based groups I’m involved with on Facebook, LinkedIn, and SheWrites. As expected, there are two widely differing perspectives on the matter. There is one side that says that your focus should be on your ministry and if you are chasing money then you are distracted by worldly things and thus not glorifying God with your work. There is the other side that says that God doesn’t expect you to work for free and you are perfectly entitled to earn an income provided that you hold your focus on God.
I’m absolutely in the latter camp and I become frustrated when I see people using the Bible as a way of saying that faith-based blogs should not be trying to monetize. In fact, I want to address a bit of it right now.
Bible Verses Against Money
For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evils. It is through this craving that some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many pangs. – 1 Timothy 6:10
I agree with 1 Timothy 6:10. The love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. The love or idolatry of money has led people to murder loved ones for life insurance payments; to lie and deceive friends, businesses, and governments for payments, refunds, and other benefits; to withhold charitable payments to those in need and to live greedy indulgent lives. Trying to earn a small income from your blog to offset operating expenses and potentially supplement your household earnings is not operating for the love of money. If you still have an issue with it you can see this post I wrote about how I use my business to give back to God.
No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money. – Matthew 6:24
Those words right there are TRUTH! You cannot serve two masters and you cannot truly glorify God if you are focused on serving the almighty dollar however it does not mean that it is sinful, wicked, or a slight against God to earn an income from your work. If you are blogging for the sole purpose of manipulating believers in to buying things so you can earn money then yes, you are sinning against God and serving money. If you are blogging for the purpose of glorifying God and you also earn an income, then that is perfectly a-ok.
Bible Verses in Favor of Earning Wages
Now to the one who works, his wages are not counted as a gift but as his due. – Romans 4:4
He who plants and he who waters are one, and each will receive his wages according to his labor. – 1 Corinthians 3:8
In the same way, the Lord commanded that those who proclaim the gospel should get their living by the gospel – 1 Corinthians 9:14
For the Scripture says, “You shall not muzzle an ox when it treads out the grain,” and, “The laborer deserves his wages.” – 1 Timothy 5:18
The Bible makes it very clear that workers deserve to be paid wages for their hours of hard work. That last verse I shared, “For the Scripture says, “You shall not muzzle an ox when it treads out the grain,” and, “The laborer deserves his wages.”” comes just one chapter before, “For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evils. It is through this craving that some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many pangs.” God is not saying that money is bad, He is saying that the love and idolatry of money is bad.
There is a huge difference.
Blogging friends, get out there and earn your income. Just be careful not to lose focus of the Lord that provided you with the talents and ability to do what you love.
How to Monetize Your Faith-Based Blog
Now that we’ve settled (I hope) the question of “Can I monetize a faith-based blog?” let’s talk a little bit about how you can do it.
Create Your Own Products
Yes, I said it and I know that you’ve seen at least a couple of dozen other bloggers say the same thing. You’re on fire for God so share that fire! We’ve been told since we were children, “this little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine!” so do it. Let it shine.
Create faith-based adult coloring books; write your own daily/weekly/monthly devotionals; start a Bible study; create faith-inspired clothing, jewelry, accessories; develop an eCourse; offer coaching services; sell printable graphics and designs; whatever it is that lights your fire, just do it.
(Speaking of which…I have a lot of awesome things coming up for y’all soon).
Write Sponsored Content
I know there seems to be this weird taboo amongst some people about sponsored content but here’s the drill -> as long as you’re staying true to yourself and your faith there is nothing wrong with selling sponsored posts on your blog.
Just provide your readers with what they expect from you so if you’re a faith-based blogger just make sure that what you’re promoting is in line with your values and brings glory to God. Don’t accept a sponsored post opportunity just because someone is offering payment (that my friends is operating for the love and idolatry of money) but if you can share an item that is supports your message then go for it.
Use Affiliate Links
Allow me to introduce you to my darling friend Liz! Liz runs a modest-fashion blog called Downtown Demure and she is amazing! She was the first fashion blogger I ever followed and to this day she is still the one I pay the most attention to when I comb through my fashion blog feed. Her whole purpose in blogging is to share modest fashion trends that allow Christian women to be stylish while keeping a demure appearance and shielding their bodies. I absolutely adore her! Her message is clear, strong, and very on fire for the Lord. She also uses affiliate links and I’m super proud of her. Be like Liz.
Using affiliate links isn’t dirty and it doesn’t mean that you’re a sell-out. It simply means that you’re savvy enough to earn a small (and I’m talking like 3% – 10% small) commission if people purchase the items you recommend. When you’re authentic in all of the things you do, like my friend Liz, the authenticity shines through. I never have an issue purchasing through her links because I know without a doubt that her endorsement of an item is 100% honest.
So go ahead and monetize your faith-based blog. God isn’t going to be angry with you for demanding compensation for your labor or for earning a wage for your work. So long as you don’t idolize money over the gospel, you’ll be fine.
Let your light shine, keep your heart and focus on God, but demand fair wages for your work.