Blogging at Google's Blogger, I recently was boondoggled by the new designs of the site, which includes my blog. I felt like I had lost track of all the blogs I daily check so that I asked for help both at my blog and on Facebook! Still trying to learn the ways of these new ways of blogging, I am turning our minds to blogging for this Friday Five.
1. When did you start blogging? What/who prompted you?
For me, it was a friend who started his own blog that prompted me to do it. I'd been working with some mass devotional emails to members of my first congregation and thought that a weblog might be a way to do the same sort of reflection without requiring as many emails to go out.
2. How often do you post? How often do you visit blogging friends and/or other blogs?
Over the past year I've posted very little. My Beloved and I went through a couple of very hard situations in the past few years, and I didn't handle my blogging about it very well. As a result, I've become a little gun-shy. I've always thought of a blog as a place to be honest, but it seems one can only be honest to a point before people start to get upset. It's also possible to use a blog to passively attack people rather than directly confront behavior that needs to change. Either way, a blogger with a conscience has to be careful.
I haven't checked in with friends as much as I once did, either. Some of my blogroll is woefully out of date, frankly. Now that I'm settling in here at St. Petri Lutheran in Story City, I'm finding things a little less chaotic and there's more time for reflection and reading - I'm hoping to take advantage of it when it comes to other blogs.
3. Why do you keep on blogging?
Because people still tell me they read what I post. My stats are WAY down, but my sermons are still getting pageviews, so it seems like people find something worthwhile there. If the numbers start going up again, it'll be obvious I'm hitting something worth blogging.
4. What do you like to write about?
The subtitle of the blog is "Following Jesus in the Real World." That's the main thing here for me. I like thinking and writing about ordinary life and how God is right there in ways we don't see. Being a father, cheering for my Huskers, running, music, reading, cooking, pastoring, taking care of the lawn - these are all vocations and I think God's mixed up in them all.
5. Have your blogging habits changed--or are they changing?
Yes, and yes again. Hopefully I'll be able to carve out some more time to work on things here. Blogging takes a healthy sense of self-worth: you need to believe you've got something worth saying and that people will want to hear it. I never lost the former, but lost the latter for a while. Here's hoping it's coming back.
I've also spent a lot of time on Facebook and Twitter, with less production to show for it (at least, that's my take personally). However, if you're an ELCA clergy-type person, you really should check out the ELCA Clergy group on Facebook; it's not always happy or fun, but I usually find it helpful and always enlightening.
Bonus: Recommend a blog or two.
A friend who has also gone through the ministry shitstorm blogs at You Win Some You Learn Some.
My colleague Clint writes at Lutheran Confessions and Steampunk Theology.