Monday, October 20, 2008

Just Blogging the Good Stuff

I wish I had them more often, but yesterday was one of those kinds of days that pretty much everything either went well, or above and beyond my expectations. Part of what made the day so good yesterday is that after I heard great teaching in Sunday school (we were in Ezekiel 16 and my pastor handled it with such grace and tact I was impressed and grateful), followed by a really good sermon (fine, my pastor always preaches good sermons) then I came home and listened to a message I'd downloaded earlier (via recommendation from a fellow Christian blogger), on being salt and light in a pagan culture. That message was also very, very good.

So, that got me to thinking yesterday about blogging, and Christian blogging in general and how it's changed over the last few years. More directly, how it's changed my life over the last 4-5 years since I've been a blog reader, and then a blogger myself. When I first started blogging a pastor friend of mine scoffed at the idea of blogs and dismissed them all as gossip columns. He later began a blog of his own. We live in a high-tech, digitally connected world and there are folks out there who love the Lord and use it for His glory. I cannot be more grateful than I am, for those people. Now, while there are a lot of things I would change about Christian blogging that I don't like at all, I'm not even going to mention any of those things because they bring me down. Really down. I don't want to go there today - I just want to focus on the good stuff.

One of the ways Christian blogging has impacted me the most, is via resources. On any given day you can find a monumental amount of book recommendations, sermon links, conference information or Bible study notes on someone's blog. If you're like me and you've fine tuned your blog reading to just the best of the best, then those links and resources are sure to be ones that will bless you and benefit you in big ways. Were it not for blogging or blog reading, I'd never come across most of these resources.

I read both men and women's blogs, and on each I find new challenges and encouragement almost every day in my way of thinking, my way of parenting, my way of homeschooling, prayer, evangelism, relationships and attitudes in general on a wide variety of topics. I like it that bloggers get personal, get doctrinal, and get honest about what they struggle with and what they've overcome by His grace. It's a big help to me too (even if I never comment because I'm the world's worst commenter).

Through blogging, I've met some pretty incredible people, and formed some pretty incredible friendships with folks I would have never met, otherwise. Some of those folks I've met face to face and others are folks I talk to nearly every day, even if it's just to say hello, discuss a prayer need, or hear some good news.

In the last few months I've really changed the way I spend time online and the amount of time I spend when I am online. My offline world demands more of my time now than it did before so I've lightened my online reading considerably. In doing that, I find that I don't feel guilty anymore that I've got 8 million blogs on my rss reader, and far too overwhelmed to ever catch up. I've got a handful of good ones that I read every day, and that's it. That's enough, because they're the good ones!

So I wonder, how has Christian blogging affected your life? What are some of the best things about it that you can think of and what are some of the most unique ways you've seen Christian blogging being used?

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