The Thin Line Between Profundity and Nonsense

Posted on April 10, 2012 by

With so many people online shouting slogans and pushing agendas, it’s easy to get caught up in a  sort of call and response approach to blogging. You read a post here or there and in a fit of emotion (whether you acknowledge it as such or not), respond with a post in objection to or support of the idea or person you disagree or agree with. Usually it’s those things we disagree with that inspire us to pen our thoughts. You can go months without an originally inspired post, a sign that you’ve wandered off message, lost your blogging mojo, and are drifting toward irrelevance.

When I began blogging 5 years ago, my motivations were clear and concise. I wanted to encourage Christian women in their roles as wives and mothers. To share my faults, foibles, and triumphs because I was acutely aware of how isolated the life of a full-time homemaker can be in a world where few families live according to the traditional model. I never wanted to give the impression that I had it all together because I don’t. and I sometimes posted embarrassing accounts of my former solipsistic ignorance and shortcomings as a homemaker.

My message was clear: Love God, love your husbands, submit to your husband whether you’re feeling it or not, take care of your family, and stop being a selfish shrew.  Get over yourself already. I took some heat for my “radical” stance.  The hate mail was alarming, then entertaining, and then boring. Friendlier readers told me to remove my email address from the blog altogether. I was called a doormat, a woman who hated herself and all other women, a vapid woman who willingly gave her identity over to a man, draping my vapidness in the language of Scripture. I was undeterred.

I was undeterred that is, until I started clicking, and clicking, and clicking some more. The more I allowed my curiosity to send me exploring the sites and blogs that linked to me or commented at my blog, the more I found myself straying from my message as I was moved by ideologies I was exposed to for the first time. And with that came more online reading than Scripture reading and reading of good books. It was beneficial at times but it was often detrimental as I found myself embracing ideas that skirted the truth of Scripture on these issues while denying or downplaying bedrock truths germane to the heart of the Christian message.

For example, I frequently found Christians so politically wed to the Republican party that they viewed free market capitalism and the gospel message as one and the same thing. I believed then as I do now in freedom and the right to property, but it isn’t the gospel and Jesus didn’t spend a lot of time talking about it or extolling the virtues of wealth. In fact he did just the opposite on more than one occasion, and He certainly never concerned Himself with preaching on the keys to comfort in this life. And yet, this is a common refrain among those who claim His name. I found myself joining in with the pragmatic political approach rather than holding to my ideals.

In other words, it was time for me to examine myself and revisit the reasons I began blogging to begin with. It’s a self-test I think we all need to do from time to time.  Christian bloggers should be especially careful because it’s easy to get off message when the din of the denizens of the blogosphere and the culture crowd out our initial motivations. It’s hard to maintain your idealism in a jaded world, but it’s the only way we can keep our hearts pure. We’re all fallen, all broken. However, once we dismiss the ideal as an aim worth reaching for and replace it with our own flawed and broken “truth”, we’ve lost not only the battle, but the war.

Regardless of the hit count, I’ll blog in the integrity of what I think is right, no matter how objectionable. It beats pandering to a group of people who can’t even be bothered to live up to what they claim to believe.

If you’re going to do this, publish your thoughts for all the world to see, you need to have two things. The first is very thick skin. The second and most important is the unwavering courage of your convictions. You have to write whatever the heck you want and let the chips fall because trying to please all of the people all of the time is a recipe for failure.

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