Well, if I have calculated correctly, I have been blogging consistently for 40 days.
I decided to start this blog because I want(ed) to write. So, I’ve been writing. The more indwelling-sin-part of me also started it with aspirations to fame and notoriety (as much as I don’t want that to be the point, it’s there). Part of me desperately wants people to know my name, and for them to think I’m smart and a good writer. I easily introspect myself into a malaise, questioning my motives and basically just thinking about me. In short, I’ve had mixed motivations — noble and base — for this blog. I must confess that. But I also must realize another thing. Like I said on one of the first things I wrote (on the “About: The Blog” page) — if I only did things I could do with wholly pure motives, I would never do anything. So, I’ve been pursuing blogging and trying to do it well, and writing and finding what this blog should be about, all the while trying to put pride before the firing squad, sometimes succeeding and other times not.
At any rate, here’s a stream-of-consciousness reflection on my blogging experience so far:
A few days ago, I mentioned my freshly made commitment to “No Bible, No Blogging”, which I made because blogging becomes, very quickly, all-consuming. It can almost be an intellectual form of MySpace or Facebook. Without making the NBNB commitment (which has been intensely good for my soul), I think blogging could have profoundly begun to deaden me spiritually.
That said, blogging has stimulated me to think and to write, especially taking my own experience and pouring it through the colander of Scripture. I’ve been posting creative writing that I’ve done, and this blog, in part, holds me to a standard and keeps me moving toward the goal of writing creatively. It’s something I value, and I think I ought to do. For years I’ve struggled with one main question: do I have the God-given talent to pursue this? Or, Am I a good enough writer? Well, I can’t say that I’ve achieved any sort of metaphysical certitude, but I have been encouraged, and will keep writing onward. What that will look like in coming months and years, I don’t know — that’s the Lord’s business.
I have a short-term daily-number-goal for this blog to reach traffic-wise, but I am far from that. Still, this blog has gotten a fair amount of traffic (actually much more than I anticipated for the first six weeks). In the first weeks of this blog, I wrote a post about the espresso machine (DeLonghi Magnifica EAM3400) Laura and I bought. I titled it after the model of the machine, basically because I wasn’t being very creative. In the Lord’s providence I have had dozens and dozens of hits from people searching “DeLonghi Magnifica EAM3400” or something related to it. God works mysteriously, that is true. I believe that in our buying the espresso machine God had in mind the people who would read my post about it. I try to pray for these people, that the Gospel will be preached to them through my post. And that through their search for an espresso machine they will find rest for their souls.
Another thing blogging has helped me with is accountability. As I said already, it keeps me writing creatively, but it helps more than that. I easily negotiate myself out of commitments or desires that I have, but making a commitment in cyber-print, is, I’ve found helpful. Two examples are the NBNB commitment, and the creative writing commitment. Spending time in the Word and creative writing are important to me, but, often, get shoved into the “later” file. However, blogging has helped keep me on task, and (for all its time-wasting potential) helps me to keep the main thing the main thing. Another example would be on Labor Day: I posted earlier in the morning that I wouldn’t blog the rest of the day, so that I could spend time with Laura. I made two commitment in that post: (1) not to blog further, and for a purpose (my wife) and (2) to post a list of what I learned in traffic driving last weekend. Posting solidified these intentions of mine, and made them more concrete, holding me to standard I could point to for accountability to keep them.
I could say more, I’m sure — because I’m talking about myself. I think, though, that I’ve written enough for now.