Thursday, 12 April 2007

Q.1 What is the chief end of blog?

I was recently asked for blogging tips by someone thinking of starting out. So, being a blogger(!), I'll collate my reply into a blog post. Hoping it'll be helpful for some. If Mike Reeves is to be believed (which he generally is), then Luther rather thought that we must have a theology of everything - blogging included (ok, he didn't explicitly mention blogging). Otherwise we'll be doing those non-theologised things idolatrously. We do have a theology of everything - but what theology? What theos? If we haven't seen blogging in the light of the word, perhaps we're blogging idolatrously! So, without further ado -

I blog (in reverse order):

a) for myself - to help me think through what I'm learning. You know - you have a brilliant or deep thought, try to explain it to someone else, and realise it actually doesn't make sense. Or you forget it a day after having it. Blogging can help you think it through more. It also keeps you more accountable about such thoughts: goes some way towards you doing theology in community, rather than on your own. Which then helps to hone those thoughts, getting input, correction, etc., from others.

b) for the Church - helps me focus on building up the Church. That is, I have a thought, I learn something, something strikes me, or something happens to me. I want to share it. But how and why? Blogging forces me to think through the thing in a gospel framework, from a gospel perspective, for the building up of the Church. Why blog it otherwise? So I aim to not blog about something until I can do so in an edifying way. Of course, and sadly, I don't achieve this 100% - nor does that mean that my posts are all fluffy & encouraging! But they should be edifying. As I say, that's an aim... (This also means that I welcome comments on any of my posts, or on the blog in general.)

c) for God's glory - the 2 aims above come under this. Blogs are sitting around theologising together, only you can do it across the world and have random people listen in, learn, rebuke, correct, encourage, etc., which is marvellous. But as with everything, it can also be self-serving, self-glorifying, captivated by the desires of the idol factory within, so idolatrous.

So as with all things, blogging should come with a 'take care' tag. It isn't that blogging is intrinsically bad. But our hearts are idol factories, and we so easily take any good thing and quickly it shows up our sin / trips us up in ways in which we hadn't had opportunity before. So for example, it's all too easy to vent on a blog - to post quickly, without the care necessary, giving off to a faceless meta rather than purposing to minister to brothers & sisters in Christ. I sometimes go and type a blog post in haste & high emotion, then save it as a draft, come back to it days later, and rewrite it / scrap it because in its original form it wouldn't minister the word well to my brothers & sisters in Christ who read the blog, or it wouldn't point them to the hope we have in Christ. Another idol-factory blogging example is being enslaved to stats, for popularity or for pride. Knowing your blog stats is not necessarily bad, but take care of your deceitful heart. I know I all too easily slip into the captivity of fear of man, and pride - so I don't register with technorati.

The purpose of blogging? To glorify and enjoy God! So purpose that your blog will be a theatre for God's glory, not for your own. And please minister the word to me to rebuke & correct me whenever that's not the case here.

Some words from better bloggers than me: Adrian Warnock - Andy Shudall


Adam said...

This is about facebook but it's probably amounts to the same thing.

Facebook to the glory of God. He is king over facebook, therefore use it to his glory.

Great each other – use facebook!

Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. 1 Corinthians 1:3

Speak Well – don’t just be trivial

Each of you must put off falsehood and speak truthfully to his neighbor, for we are all members of one body. Eph 4:25

Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. Eph 4:29

When words are many, sin is not absent, but he who holds his tongue is wise. Proverbs 10:19

A lying tongue hates those it hurts, and a flattering mouth works ruin. Proverbs 26:28

Encourage – use it to bring life

Like cold water to a weary soul is good news from a distant land. Proverbs 25:25

But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called Today, so that none of you may be hardened by sin's deceitfulness. Hebrews 3:13

Respond to what we hear

For this reason, ever since I heard about your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all the saints, I have not stopped giving thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers. Eph 1:15-16

When I heard these things, I sat down and wept. For some days I mourned and fasted and prayed before the God of heaven. Nehemiah 1:4

For he longs for all of you and is distressed because you heard he was ill. Philippians 2:26

See people – don’t just facebook

Share with God's people who are in need. Practice hospitality. Romans 12:19
Gaius, whose hospitality I and the whole church here enjoy, Romans 16:23
Offer hospitality to one another without grumbling 1 Peter 4:9

I have much to write to you, but I do not want to use paper and ink. Instead, I hope to visit you and talk with you face to face, so that our joy may be complete. 2 John 12

I have much to write you, but I do not want to do so with pen and ink. I hope to see you soon, and we will talk face to face. 3 John 13-14

Declare – communicate across boundaries

Declare his glory among the nations, his marvelous deeds among all peoples. 1 Chronicles 16:24, Psalm 96:3

Get you name written where it counts

The glory and honor of the nations will be brought into it [the new creation]. Nothing impure will ever enter it, nor will anyone who does what is shameful or deceitful, but only those whose names are written in the Lamb's book of life. Revelation 21:26-27

Final Words

He who works his land will have abundant food, but the one who chases fantasies will have his fill of poverty. Proverbs 28:19

And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him. Colossians 3:17

Gary said...

Hi Rosemary, thanks for your recent comment on my blog. I hadn't realised that WJ Grier wasn't John Grier! Thanks for the clarification. I've enjoyed reading your blog postings, and will continue to visit - as well as at your group blog 'The Coffee Bible Club'. I might even take part, if that's ok!