18

O My CBC Week: faith, blogging, and you

O My Friends and readers (who are friends I just haven’t met yet), I need your help. At 12:45pm Mountain Standard Time on Saturday May 26th 2010 I will be in front of a room filled with people who will expect me to have stuff to say about the interaction of bliggity blogging and faith. I’m so glad it’s a panel discussion with Marty Halverson, Natalie HolbrookHeather King , Kristen Howerton and Dallas Petersen. I am really looking forward to bouncing around this great topic with such great people.

But before I get to talk to them about it, I’d love to talk to YOU about it. What do you say, will you bounce around the topic of blogging and faith with me?

I’d love to hear your responses to any or all (if you have a lot of time on your hands) of these questions that strike you. Are you ready? Here it goes:

How do you incorporate (or not incorporate) your faith into your blogging?

What do you appreciate about how other bloggers address faith in their posts?

What turns you off about how other bloggers address faith in their posts? (*No names, please!*)

Do you regularly read blogs that represent a different faith than your own? Why or why not?

Has blogging ever enriched your faith? How?

Lastly, and most importantly, if Jesus had a blog, would it be on Blogger or WordPress?

Happy CBC Week!

18 Responses to “O My CBC Week: faith, blogging, and you”

  1. Erin

    How do you incorporate (or not incorporate) your faith into your blogging? I write about my life, and my faith is a huge part of it. Just like it’s natural for me to write about my kids and my husband, it’s natural for me to write about my relationship with the Lord.

    What do you appreciate about how other bloggers address faith in their posts? I appreciate those who blog about their faith as a personal, deep, growing, changing relationship.

    What turns you off about how other bloggers address faith in their posts? (*No names, please!*) I tend to skip over posts that seem preachy, or are written more like an article or essay than like a personal testimony.

    Do you regularly read blogs that represent a different faith than your own? Why or why not? I am a pretty conservative Baptist, and there aren’t a ton of us out in the blogosphere. I read blogs by Catholics, Methodists, Lutherans, and a whole bunch of other Protestant-type faiths. I also read one blogger who is an atheist and have a dear blogging friend who is a Mormon. I read the blogs that appeal to me, with writers who are real and living life and being themselves and putting it out there. And I think reading from a broad spectrum of faiths allows me to use the critical thinking skills my dad worked so hard to teach me. It has definitely widened my perspective and trashed a lot of my preconceived stereotypes!

    Has blogging ever enriched your faith? How? Absolutely. Reading the perspectives of other women in their journey with the Lord is so encouraging and challenging.

    Lastly, and most importantly, if Jesus had a blog, would it be on Blogger or WordPress? WordPress, definitely.

    Reply
  2. Jenn

    Fun!

    1) Honestly, I don’t incorporate it as much as I used to, but I suppose when I do, I simply speak about God’s hand as I see it working, just as I would in normal conversation. There was a lot of “talking things out” on my blog when we first God married when I struggled to see God in things.

    2) I LOVE when other bloggers are honest and open about their beliefs. Not necessarily one long doctrinal post after another but more of unashamedly incorporating their faith into the chronicles of their everyday life.

    3) While I appreciate (and sympathize) when bloggers share the struggles they have when others ridicule/condemn their beliefs, I don’t appreciate when they do the same to other faiths. A rant about why their faith is better than other’s (whether or not I agree with points they make) is a BIG turnoff.

    4) I read some blogs that differ from my faith, but only slightly. I find it difficult to read things that are so diametrically opposed to my worldview. However, I don’t have a problem reading someone that might disagree with what I believe if that opposition doesn’t permeate their blog. That said, my faith is such a big part of my life that I can more easily relate to people who share SOME of my beliefs.

    5) Reading and writing blogs has ABSOLUTELY enriched my faith. So many times I am encouraged by bloggers (including you!) who share what they’re learning, and it directly applies to something I’m going through at the time. Like virtual iron sharpening iron. :) And writing has been like a journal for me. Just this week I have looked back on things we have gone through (and that I blogged about) and how God’s hand was in it. What a great way to remember!

    6) I think Jesus’ blog would be Self-hosted. :)

    Wish I could hear the panel this week! Best wishes and hope you have fun! :)

    Reply
  3. Kaycee

    How do you incorporate (or not incorporate) your faith into your blogging?
    I actually don’t have a blog (shocking right?). :)

    What do you appreciate about how other bloggers address faith in their posts?
    I like it when it is a natural integration of their lives and posts. It’s just there, because it is a big part of their lives so they don’t have to think about how to talk about it, they just naturally do. When it comes up, they talk about it, when it doesn’t relate to their post – they don’t force it in.

    What turns you off about how other bloggers address faith in their posts? (*No names, please!*)
    When they do very long posts that are quotes straight from the bible or about religion. I like to read their thoughts but if I wanted to read a passage from the bible I would go get mine. Does that make sense? I don’t mind when they write about how they feel about a passage or how it has helped them, made them think, etc. I don’t even mind when it is their own summary or interpretation of the passage – in their own words. I just don’t like excessively long quotes straight from the source, simply list the passage and if I want to read it I will go look it up.

    Do you regularly read blogs that represent a different faith than your own? Why or why not?
    Yes. I honestly don’t pay any attention to a person’s faith when I add them to my reader. If I am interested I add them, if I like them and their writing they stay. I like it when the person’s blog has a different faith, or perspective, or opinion than mine – it makes me think and that’s valuable. I also like to read some that are more like me in lifestyle, choice and religion because it can be easier to relate. I like a good mix. :)
    Has blogging ever enriched your faith? How?

    Lastly, and most importantly, if Jesus had a blog, would it be on Blogger or WordPress?
    Since I don’t blog – no clue. :)

    Reply
  4. Philip @ RAOP

    I will take a stab at these. :-)
    How do you incorporate (or not incorporate) your faith into your blogging?
    1) I think I more accurately incorporate my blog into my faith. I first wanted to have a Christian blog about parenting. I quickly realized that I would do better simply blogging about parenting. My Christian world view is very evident without being the primary focus. My goal was to share hand offer my experiences as help to other parents of all faith. I just happen to be a Christian. If you read a post or two that will most likely become obvious.

    What do you appreciate about how other bloggers address faith in their posts?
    2) I have found a few that take the same approach as I have above. They are where I got my inspiration. I like the fact that their faith in apart of every aspect of life. It isn’t simply regulated to the blog or certain topics but is seen influencing everything they do. Exactly how faith should work.

    What turns you off about how other bloggers address faith in their posts? (*No names, please!*)
    3) It is easy for typed discussions about Christianity and faith to start looking like poor Sunday school curriculum. I get turned off when I realize the entire post is going to be theology and ideology without any practical examples of what it means to actually live out the values. I love debating theology, don’t get me wrong, but as Paul wrote, faith without works is dead! How do we LIVE what we believe? That is what I like to read about.

    Do you regularly read blogs that represent a different faith than your own? Why or why not?
    4) nope, then again, I don’t regularly read blogs representing my faith either. I read blogs on life topics that interest me (parenting, families, photography, gardening) most of which are written by Christians.

    Has blogging ever enriched your faith? How?
    5) I have learned that you process information differently when writing it down verses reading or speaking. This is why journaling is so beneficial. Well, I have never been good at journaling so blogging is my substitute. I enjoy working though how my faith influences me as a parent. I often learn more than my readers do!

    Lastly, and most importantly, if Jesus had a blog, would it be on Blogger or WordPress?
    6) WordPress. However, it would be self-hosted and most likely be customized beyond recognition. It would have to be to support the level of distributed computing that would be needed to handle his archive data and database loading!

    So, that is my take. :-) Have fun at the conference and by God bless your words!

    Reply
  5. abby

    I think that by being myself I show my faith through my struggles and the way that I handle them. I read mostly blogs that have the same faith as mine because I believe they strengthen me. There are so many great points and topics that bloggers bring up and I love how even though they believe the same way as I do, that they have a different eye through which they are looking at a specific scripture or life event. it opens my mind and I feel like it recharges me. Sometimes I hear about people at my husband’s work that read my blog or friends on facebook that read it and I hope that even though I’m not screaming Bible verses and craming them all over my blog, that they see God through me in my blog. I hope that it is able to be a great vessle to witness to people.

    Reply
  6. Brandy

    How do you incorporate (or not incorporate) your faith into your blogging?
    My faith is interwoven with the every day life that I usually blog about. How could I possibly separate them? If I left out the Faith in my every day life when I was blogging, I’d feel I was being dishonest or something. It’s not an in-your-face kind of thing. It’s more a subtle “thank you Lord for the many blessings” kind of thing.

    What do you appreciate about how other bloggers address faith in their posts?
    I get turned off BIG time at judgmental bloggers. You know the ones: you’re going to hell if you do this … you’re going to hell if you’ve involved with that. Oh and the ones who put their own spin on the Bible and call it Truth.

    When they blog with grace, love, patience … that’s what I tune into and love to read. They don’t have to be over-the-top constantly blogging about their faith … I mean, if they want to that’s great too … but just subtle sprinklings are good too :-)

    What turns you off about how other bloggers address faith in their posts? (*No names, please!*)
    See above ;-)

    Do you regularly read blogs that represent a different faith than your own? Why or why not?
    I do believe I have a couple in my reader that don’t believe as I do. A couple Catholics for sure, I know. There are even some that don’t have a faith at all in there. Then there are a couple that I have NO CLUE if they have a faith or not. They never blog about it.

    Has blogging ever enriched your faith? How?
    It has. I get to connect and be challenged by my readers AND other bloggers. Iron sharpens Iron. I’m also challenged, though, by those who DON’T share my faith. ESPECIALLY the ones who may think badly about Christianity. Spurs me on to live even more fully for Him …. …. buuuuut, to also help others like that person(s) to see that just because there are a few bad stereotypes out there (and it goes with ALL aspects of life — homeschooling, homechurching, frugal living, etc), doesn’t mean you have to lump EVERYONE into that group.

    Lastly, and most importantly, if Jesus had a blog, would it be on Blogger or WordPress?
    WORDPRESS. Definitely. Self-hosted and TOTALLY very-cooly customized.

    Reply
  7. Sarah Marie

    1. I incorporate faith into my blogging based entirely on self-deemed relevance. Looking at my posts, I guess the general trend is that I blog about faith: – when God is unbuckling me, stripping me down, and humbling me. When the Big Guy is in the process of doing all that, I find it hard to concentrate on anything else. My writing reflects those kinds of struggles when they occur… and they occur frequently! I’m imperfect and still He loves me. – I also blog about faith on significant days in the Church calendar. I’m Catholic, so there are a lot of random holidays, but I like to focus on what I view as the building blocks. For me, those holidays are Easter, the Lenten Season in general, Feast of the Ascension, & Pentecostal Sunday. :)

    2. I like when people can incorporate faith without being overly pious or snooty about it. I like humility. I like people who are honest about the real, day-to-day struggles of being a believer of any kind. I like people who have a pure and honest love of God, and when their posts come from a place that is reflective of the desire to find out more about themselves, more about God, or to move others to do the same (again, in a non-proselytizing way.)

    3. Judgey-ness. It’s not necessary to bash other people in order to explain your own beliefs. Love up on everyone and respect ‘em, even if they disagree with you.

    4. I do regularly read blogs written by men and women of all faiths. I read them because I respect everyone who has a thirst for truth, however that manifests. And, too, sometimes I’m just plain curious.

    5. Blogging enriches my faith by giving me a more accountable means to work through spiritual issues. It’s not that I don’t have other ways of being accountable for my spiritual shortcomings, but the blogging forum is nice in that 1. I’m always better at writing than explaining verbally, so I feel that I’m more effective at describing my heart in print rather than with my very big mouth 2. It’s a great way to record progress. If a year ago God put it in my heart to do something and I struggled with it but fulfilled my side of the bargain with scripture reading and fellowship and service, I want to see the fruits of that struggle. And, plain as day, I can see it in blog posts. 3. The public nature of a blog is an instant way to humble yourself. It’s awesome. 4. I haven’t yet made use of the fact that blogging can be a way to witness to people. I’m just not there yet spiritually/emotionally. But I hope that one day I will have a great big strong heart to witness, and that my blog, as an extension of my life, could be a means to really sow some awesome seeds of faith.

    Reply
  8. Tiffany

    How do you incorporate (or not incorporate) your faith into your blogging?

    What do you appreciate about how other bloggers address faith in their posts? I tend to gravitate toward blogs that don’t overwhelm me with faith – like yours. I enjoy the occassional faith-filled post. But, I really enjoy blogs tha find grace and HIM in the small things.

    What turns you off about how other bloggers address faith in their posts? I don’t want to read a blog where I feel like their faith is being forceful. And, more recently, where I feel like my personal faith is being questioned if I don’t do something the way they are suggesting. Nothing is more upsetting to me than to read something that leaves me feeling like this woman thinks God loves her more than me because she does this, this and this. Um. No.

    Do you regularly read blogs that represent a different faith than your own? I regularly read (several of the panelists actually, but not all) along with several other faith full blogs. They all line up with my ideals of religion, faith and family, for the most part. I tend to stray to faith blogs occassionally that are little more conservative, but then they get talking about godliness and forcing me to raise children a certain way and I get upset and have to quit reading.

    Has blogging ever enriched your faith? I think it does everyday. I would NEVER consider my blog to be a faith blog, because I am certainly not that amazing, but I know I love Him and I know I pray and trust and listen to my faith more than I do most things in my life. And, I feel like I am able to mix my reflective posts and my weird sense of humor at times and make it work or me. And, leave the post with more clarity and understandig of His call to action for me. Does that make sense? I dont think so.

    Lastly, and most importantly, if Jesus had a blog, would it be on Blogger or WordPress? J-dawg would be on WordPress. For certain. He likes things that make life more simple.

    Reply
  9. Elizabeth

    1) I incorporate my faith by sharing what am struggling with and what God has taught me… whenever I realize what those things are!

    2) I love how people are honest about their faith and their struggles, and who share humbly what God is doing in their life.

    3) It bothers me when people act like they are all “high and mighty” and right with God. Especially those who brag about what they do every day that makes them a good Christian. they might not say those words, but it’s obvious that’s what they’re trying to show by saying what they do.

    4) By different faiths, I’m assuming you mean those who are Jewish, Mormon, Hindu, etc. as opposed to just different denominations of Christianity? if that’s what you mean, then no, i don’t read them b/c i have nothing in common with those people and don’t want to waste my free time reading something that would upset me. there is also enough dissent within Christianity!

    5) I think blogging has enriched my faith only b/c it forces me to decide what i am going through and to put my feelings on paper and really work them out.

    6) i feel uncomfortable saying what blog Jesus would have since I don’t think any of us can know what Jesus would do (my Christian thought teacher at Wheaton told us that “WWJD” is unbiblical and all we can know about who Jesus is from what he has done and what he has promised to do).

    Reply
  10. PikaPikaChick

    I’m sure this question is not intended for a faithless individual but I’m going to chime in here anyway.

    How do you incorporate (or not incorporate) your faith into your blogging?
    I don’t do this per se, but I do blog about extremists and the absurd things that they do. Since I write my blog for myself and don’t actually expect anyone to read it (er, when I’m not writing about the Real Food Boot Camp) I do a lot of spur-of-the-moment, “WTF” posts as I come across stuff on the Web. I have two tags I use for this sort of thing: “Fundies” and “Secularism.”

    What do you appreciate about how other bloggers address faith in their posts?
    Not so much the faith thing, but it’s always warm and fuzzy when someone talks about someone in their community did to help someone else.

    What turns you off about how other bloggers address faith in their posts? (*No names, please!*)
    Honestly, when a blog in my reader gets too religion-intensive, I unsubscribe. This usually happens because the, um, faithiness reaches epic crazy proportions. For example, BloggerPerson writes a fun post about making cupcakes with their husband and all the sudden inexplicably starts talking about Jesus in some completely unrelated tangent. And, you know, that whole “my religious idol can beat up your religious idol” thing.

    Do you regularly read blogs that represent a different faith than your own? Why or why not?
    I do have some blogs in my RSS reader written by vocal Christians. One is written by a Christian apologist, which is interesting and very well written and researched, and the rest usually talk about crafts and cooking. Those are the ones where I ignore the faithspeak.

    Has blogging ever enriched your faith? How?
    Through blogging I discovered that I really, truly am faithless. I used to be on the fence about whether or not I was still a polytheist in even just a tiny way, but I’ve discovered over time where my head is at.

    Lastly, and most importantly, if Jesus had a blog, would it be on Blogger or WordPress?
    I’m pretty sure Jesus would be doing more productive things with his time, like volunteering at a shelter, giving blood, or performing miracles in a hospital. Just sayin’.

    Reply
  11. Nichole

    When I first started blogging I felt like I had to be super Holy on my blog. I had to talk about all things Jesus, but when I went back later and read some of my posts I was really turn off by them. I love God, I am so thankful for my salvation, and I have a lot to say about that, but most of the time I just do every day stuff with every day people. I want my blog (and my life) to represent who I actually am, not who I am pretending to be or want others to think I am. So when it fits I talk about Holy things, but more often than not I just talk about whats going on in my life and hope that God is reflected in those things.

    Thats all I got.

    Reply
  12. Jessica@The Southern Belle Baby

    I’ve just started incorporating my faith into my blog. At first, I talked solely about TTC, pregnancy and mommyhood, but recently, we have made a major lifestyle change, and our lives now revolve around God (as they should have to begin with). With this newfound understanding of what’s important in life, my faith has begun to seep into the blog. I plan on doing a full-out post on this change soon (once I can give it the attention it’s due), but I truly love to find other bloggers that live according to their faith and make no apologies for their good morals and values. I started reading your blog recently, and it felt like a breath of fresh air. Thanks for being so inspiring and reminding me each day to keep God first. :)

    Reply
  13. Jenn

    I think the most important thing about adding a little bit of faith to your blog is to lead my example. No potty-mouths, no insane posts that involve TMI.

    I know this may sound so horribly bad, but I do not read strictly faith blogs (except for one). And I do not enjoy faith blogs that seem so “cookie cutter”, almost Stepford wife-ish. C’mon we ALL have struggles and reading that makes me want to barf in my mouth :). (not really just saying)

    I don’r read other blogs that represent other faiths. I believe fully in Jesus and need not look or hear anything otherwise.

    Since becoming a mother there has been nothing better than reading other mommy christian blogs. I have never prayed more for mercy since my son has been born (no joke :), but have been so encouraged by other christian blogs that I see that go through the same thing.

    Lastly, and most importantly, if Jesus had a blog, would it be on Blogger or WordPress
    BLOGGER Baybee

    Reply
  14. Helen

    Not gonna go through the questions cause answers would be samey samey to others but just a thought:
    I started reading your blog cause it was a parenting blog and thought it was great. Was a few weeks till you mentioned something about your faith and that just made me like it more because it made me identify with you and your other readers more. THe blogs I read are not all written by Christians but when I find out a blog is Christian it makes my heart swell, just knowing there are others out there like me!
    Hope this makes sense- 7 week old decided night was play time and I feel a little jumbled today.
    Helen

    Reply
  15. Ann

    First, your last question made me laugh out loud! I wasn’t sure how to respond at first, but faith for me is something that is intentionally personal. That being said, I definately read blogs that weave in faith (ah-hem, I’m here) and really enjoy them. I also read blogs by writers whose faith is different than mine, which I find to be eye-opening and enriching. One thing I enjoy most when I come across “faith” in blogs is when I have read a blog and enjoyed it, related to the author, etc. before I come across reference to “faith.” This is heart warming. Very often the person’s religious or faith views are differnt than my own, but I love knowing that I can connect with people with a variety of backgrounds, including a variety of different religions. Its early and my brain is only running on 1/2 cup of coffee. This was not as eloquent as in my head. Sorry.

    Reply
  16. Amy

    When I first started blogging I felt like I had to be super Holy on my blog. I had to talk about all things Jesus, but when I went back later and read some of my posts I was really turn off by them. I love God, I am so thankful for my salvation, and I have a lot to say about that, but most of the time I just do every day stuff with every day people. I want my blog (and my life) to represent who I actually am, not who I am pretending to be or want others to think I am. So when it fits I talk about Holy things, but more often than not I just talk about whats going on in my life and hope that God is reflected in those things.

    Thats all I got.

    Reply
  17. Liz

    I think I stuggle with wanting to be relevant to a majority of my readers. At the same time the reason I started my blog was to share my life and how I view things as a mom, wife, and daughter of God. All of who I am will be relected in my writings…I don’t want to hold back because I might offend some reader.
    I also try to balance that out with not using alot of “christianese” language- using phrases and words that would confuse a non-christian. I believe who you are at the core comes out when you write and share life experiences. If believe if you’re relationship with Jesus is central, that relationship will come into play as you share you life on your blog.

    Reply

Leave a Reply

  • (will not be published)

XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>