Thursday, November 26, 2015

Blogging about Blogging

There was a time when I would blog three to four times a week. Blogging is like breathing for me--it is that place where I process and wrestle with deep thoughts, where I confess and expose my struggles with life and faith, where I laugh at myself and marvel at God and muse at the intermingling of the two. Honestly, friends, I don't do it for you. I do it for me. I have never thought of my blog as a ministry to others. I've always seen it as therapy for myself. I count it as a luxury of sorts--a hobby. Something I GET to do, not something I HAVE to do.

So when I started Seminary over a year a ago and suddenly found myself with (GASP) assigned reading and writing, the blog got put on the on back burner. After all, no one grades my blog and it certainly isn't earning me any scholarships, salary, or fame. I've gotten to the point where instead of blogging three to four times a week, I'm blogging three to four times a month. And  I guess I thought it didn't matter, because, you know, I do it for myself. Only a few weeks ago I realized something. Blogging is like breathing for me--and I'm suffocating.

Still, I continued to ignore it. Where was the time? Everything else took priority. I knew I needed to write because the knots in my head and my heart were getting bigger and tighter, and writing is my only means of unraveling them. But the pressures of daily living are unrelenting, and my plate is as full of most of yours will be today as you feast on turkey and dressing. The ministries on my plate are appealing and delightful and I want to have them all. But it turns out that eating--no matter how delicious the food--is not all that satisfying when one can't breathe.

All of the ministries that I love are starting to lose their flavor because I am not breathing between bites. Blogging is like breathing for me. Why would I ignore breathing? Because I had fully convinced myself that blogging--like breathing--is entirely self-serving. And I translated that to mean selfish, expendable, or superfluous. But I don't think of breathing like that. Somehow, breathing (though self-serving) is worthy of my time. In fact, I can't not do it.

And so it seems that the only healthy thing to do is to blog more regularly. To breathe. Which I intend to do.

But if I'm being totally honest (which, you know, I usually am) I'd have to admit that it was a note from a stranger that woke me up and reminded me to breathe. A young woman sent me a message through Facebook that I almost didn't see because she wasn't my friend, and messages from strangers on Facebook don't go into one's regular inbox. Having done a "marathon read" of my blog, she shared with me how my writing had ministered to her. And it was as if God wanted to remind me that even though I write for me (and that's okay! He wants me to breathe)--He can use it (wants to use it?) to speak to others as well.

Before I started blogging, I journaled. Fact: if the writing were really meant just for me, then journaling would be the right medium. Yet, somehow I sense that my words are meant to be shared. I like sharing them. I need to share them. I can't not do it.

So for the past year this poor little blog has been on life-support, limping along, winded and weak. But today there is a fresh wind blowing.

Yes, I'm breathing again. And I like it. 

1 comment:

  1. Your writing is a breath of fresh air, ministering to deep places in my soul, Jen. I'm thankful that you share your heart via words with the world.