Hello Ladies! It’s been a while; a month to be exact, but I am happy to be back and super excited to share with you all the amazing new content I have prepared!
Now, I know many of you, especially those have been here a while, must be wondering what happened to the website. Why does it look different? Why the sudden change?
(But if you’re new here, welcome and don’t worry! This post will still encourage you and challenge you).
Today, I would like to share with you a behind the scenes of web-development, the struggle I experienced in the month of April and how God reminded me that even in the midst of uncertainty, He is present and His peace keeps me going, and it will do the same for you!
A Little Back Story
In the beginning of the year, after we relaunched our website, I noticed that there was an issue with the theme that our site was using. A theme is the overall look, feel and style of a website. This includes things like the color scheme, layout and style elements.
Now, I am no IT expert, neither do I have any background in web development, but one thing I do know is that if there is a problem with your theme, it can affect your entire website, especially the frontend of the site.
Definitions of frontend and backend (as I will use this 2 words throughout the post):
- “Backend” refers to any part of a website or software program that users do not see i.e. where I work on updates, posts before they are published etc.
- “Frontend” refers to a program’s or website’s user interface, which is what you see and interact with on a daily basis.
Driven by my concern for the future of my site I reached out to the developer I had hired and asked for help. However, I was told not to worry about the theme and to ignore the update messages I kept receiving in my WordPress dashboard.
I ended up having a scare in March when the frontend of my website wouldn’t load but kept giving me an error, yet I could access the backend (I remember sending an email to you all giving you a notice that there was an issue with the site).
That day, I worked frantically to get the website up and running and to make it worse, I had no idea how to fix it!
I reached out to my hosting company who then told me that the problem was with the theme and I needed to update it, but the issue was, it wouldn’t update! They then advised me to reach out to the developer I had hired, but he never responded to my messages.
I was stranded, with no way of fixing my website and no idea where to begin.
I did what I knew how to do - I Prayed.
So, I did what I could; what I knew how to do – I prayed.
I cried out to God and reminded him that all this -UnScripted, the website, the posts – weren’t mine. They were His!
He was the one who told me to start UnScripted. He was the one who got us this far and all that I was doing wasn’t for myself but for His glory and His Kingdom. And I told Him to come through for us; for me, for the website, for the ladies I was serving and those whom I was yet to serve.
And He did! God came through for me!
It turns out that what had caused the frontend of the site not to load wasn’t the lack of updating the theme, but it was one of the plugins I was using (A plugin is a software component that adds a specific feature to an existing computer program. In this case, WordPress has various plugins that add features and functionalities to your website, which were not there before).
However, I knew that if I was not able to sort out the issue I had with my theme, the next time the website had an error, it would be because of the theme.
And because neither my hosting company nor I could solve the problem, I told God to make a way. To give me a solution that would permanently fix this issue.
Changing the theme was the ONLY solution.
After praying, researching and talking out the issue with my sister, the only reasonable thing that I could do was change the theme.
Now, I know that sounds like a quick & easy fix where you just press a button and your theme changes, but there’s more to that. When it comes to changing a theme, you either purchase a theme (which range from $19 -$300 and more) or you use a free theme.
And when you do change a theme, whether it is a free or premium theme, one still has to take the time to edit it and change it. However, using a free theme is more disadvantageous as it is harder to customize it to fit your brand, lacks many features and style elements which, at the end of the day. you will have to pay for, and it requires a lot of time for one to work around it.
I knew that changing the theme was what I needed to do but I was very worried. I didn’t know where I was going to begin in terms of finding an affordable theme and one that fitted the UnScripted brand. I was worried about changing the theme just after 4 months of relaunching the website.
I kept thinking, “What will people say? What will they think about me constantly changing the web theme? That I am indecisive and can’t stick to one thing?“
But at the end of the day, I knew that it needed to be done.
So I did it, afraid, fearful and with lots of questions in the back of my mind.
I did it Afraid.
After announcing that I was going on a break (which I did before I decided to purchase a new theme), I found a theme that best suited the UnScripted brand, which was easily customizable to fit both our current and growing needs.
I took a leap of faith and purchased it, whilst I was still anxious and worried, and began working on the theme soonafter.
Now, I experienced a lot of hurdles a long the way like needing a premium plugin to use certain features of the theme, the theme on installing onto the staging site I was using (a staging site is a clone of your live website. It enables you to test any changes or major new features that you plan to implement or ‘push’ onto your live website) which made me doubt purchasing the them in the first place.
And in that moment of doubt and anxiety, God calmed me down (literally) and told me that everything will work out for my good. He reassured me that He didn’t bring me this far for everything to fall apart and not work out. He told me that He was in control and I needed to trust Him. Even if I couldn’t see a way forward or understand how it will all work out.
Peace that Surpasses ALL Understanding.
Friends, that’s what peace that surpasses understanding means.
We experience it in situations that are beyond our understanding; beyond human reason and logic because God’s ways are beyond human understanding.
He gives us peace even when where we’re at doesn’t make sense. He gives us peace when the season we’re in is difficult and we can’t see a way out.
This peace; this peace that surpasses understanding is an assurance that even though I am in a season and a situation that doesn’t make sense and there is no logical solution for it – it is impossible to solve, God’s got it!
He will make a way where there is no way! He will part the red sea and create a pathway where there was water. He will cause the raging storms both within you and outside you to be still.
That is the peace God gave me through this trying time and it’s the same peace that is available for you (John 14:27 and Philippians 4:6-7).
And if you’re wondering if God will come through for you, look at our website now!
No issues! No errors both in the frontend and backend! And it is looking better than ever!
Indeed GOd will still the raging storms in our mind. Such an encouragement!
Yes! He definitely will and I’m glad it encouraged you!!
THis was awesome testimony and beautiful encourAgement.