FEW YEARS AGO, I found myself at a bit of a standstill with my life. I am a stay-at-home mom of two wonderful children, which I find to be a consuming job. All I had time for was being a mom, and although I loved that and still do, I wanted to be doing something more for God.
No sooner did I ask Him, I quickly felt God leading me to a ministry idea that honestly scared me, and was beyond my knowledge and expertise of pulling off. I was out taking a walk, trying to catch a few moments of alone time and talking with God. He immediately took me down memory lane. I found myself reflecting over my middle- and high-school years, and how in a spiritual sense, I wished they had been different. I had longed for good mentors in my life, spiritual mothers, and a strong Christian community that I just didn’t have.
As I continued walking, God began to lay a few young girls on my heart, and how they have the same desires I had as a teenager. He was telling me I needed to do something. What, exactly? was the question.
So I asked Him: OK, God, what do You want me to do? I felt Him telling me to start something online that would encourage girls through His Word. An outlet they could go to for validation, spiritual encouragement, and guidance, with no judgment or shame put on them.
I knew right away I wanted this to be a magazine. Partly because when I was in high school, I loved reading magazines, and I wanted to take them beyond the usual social-media experience. I wanted something that seemed deeper, more personal.
When I got back home, I began to tell my husband, and he immediately gave me a name for the magazine: Uncommon Girl. Yes, you heard correctly. I wish I had come up with the name, but my husband did! Now, I am not tech-savvy or graphics-minded at all. So, I used my resources wisely and called my sister-in-law, Sarah, who agreed to help me get it up and running. We agreed to pray about it before we started anything.
During our time of seeking God, our families went to the 2018 Church of God General Assembly in Orlando, where God confirmed that I should move forward with this idea.
One morning as Sarah and I were at the pool, we watched a girl, about 15, come and sit by us. She was a very cute girl wearing a very skimpy swimsuit. She laid on a lounge chair and posed over and over again, trying to get a picture of herself in her swimsuit. She undoubtedly was going to show it all to the world. We knew her photo would be on social media within a matter of seconds. This completely broke us—to see a young girl who had no problem showing herself off to find validation. Girls today live in a mindset of “likes.” We knew then God was saying yes to our dream.
Uncommon Girl Magazine was started within three months of that day by the pool. We moved quickly to find social media and magazine writers, craft promo videos, and create social-media pages. Almost before we knew it, our first magazine was out.
My goal for the magazine and overall ministry is to inspire girls to stand out for God’s glory by being uncommon. With the help of the writers, we put out content that includes daily devotionals, writing prompts, Bible-reading plans, guided prayers, modest fashion ideas, and much more. All of this can be found in the magazine and our social-media pages.
Being a ministry that runs strictly on digital platforms, I have faced some push-back. The most repeated concern has been moms saying, “I don’t let my daughter on social media.” Usually this is because somewhere along the line, boundaries were not set up and those young girls got into trouble on social media.
I try to encourage those moms and give them advice in moving forward. Many of them don’t know there are tools out there to monitor what their daughters view and what comes through on their devices. Social media does have downfalls, as do all things in the 21st century.
But if we limit ourselves because it has been known as “bad,” then we will miss out on the good it can bring. That’s what I tell moms—that their girls are missing out on the good things and the positivity that can be found.
I have seen such a tremendous confidence rising in the girls who follow us. I have had girls share their Christian testimony for the first time through their Uncommon Girl Magazine account, and it has brought them, and me, such joy. I see girls living out the Scriptures and being made overcomers by the word of their testimonies.
I hear from girls asking, “Can you talk about confidence? What do I do when I don’t feel good enough?” Society and social media constantly put down girls today, leaving them in a state of comparison and feeling “less than.”
We are a platform that says it’s OK to be different; it’s OK to stand out; and it’s OK to talk about God not only on social media, but in school hallways as well.
In Mark 16:15, God commands us to take the good news into all the world, and that is just what Uncommon Girl Magazine is doing. It may look different to some, but sometimes to reach a new generation we have to be different.
Morgan Wilson and her husband, Stephen, are bringing up their two young children, Willow and Milo, in northeast Georgia. Morgan is a graduate of Lee University who taught in an inner-city high school for two years before becoming a stay-at-home mom.