First, let me get this off my chest.
Blogging has always seemed to me a narcissistic endeavor. How egotistical can I be to assume there are others out there who have reason to care about anything I have to say? Blogging is not simply journaling; blogging is for the public domain. To blog is to assume others are interested. To blog is to assume your voice should be heard, nay, broadcast to the global blogging community. Who exactly do I think I am to begin a blog?
I am someone who would prefer to publish my thoughts in the traditional sense of the word. I want to write a book. I want to have something substantive to say. In reality, I want to be heard at the cost of $19.99 per copy. Who's narcissistic now?
Lately I have looked at blogging through different eyes.
My concern with blogging is that it is essentially about me. I write my thoughts, assume they are worth while for you to read, and invite you to come back for more. This is the inherent shortcoming of the blogging enterprise. However, recently I had an experience that challenged my perspective.
I am a youth minister with a smaller church in the Detroit area. I serve a group of roughly twenty in grades 7-12, and I could not ask for a better bunch. Last night we had a devotional at the home of one of our families. All went well. Turnout was good was good, food was good, message was good, everything was good. Toward the end of our time together I made a plea for students to consider joining a leadership council I hope to launch this fall. What started as a commercial quickly evolved into a ranting sermon of sorts.
Where did that come from?
Lately I have been frustrated at the unwillingness of others to listen. Everywhere I go others force their thoughts and opinions on me whether I want them or not. I do my best to listen - to truly care. Unfortunately, most of the time I have the impression those same people have little concern for my thoughts or feelings on similar matters. I end up on the listening end of most conversations, unwilling to advance my ideas in discussions where other parties couldn't care less what I think in return.
I am a minister. It is my job to listen. In fact, I think I am quite good at listening for the most part. My voice does not need to be heard on every matter and that is perfectly fine with me. But there are those times. Sometimes I want a voice in the conversation.
Last night my teens were victim of my need to be heard. Weeks of pent up frustration translated into an abuse of power directed at undeserving parties.
On the drive home it hit me. I need an outlet. Though I fear blogging to be inherently selfish, misuse of power for the sake of pacifying my ego is a far greater evil. Maybe blogging has its place after all.
So there you have it. Call me neurotic. Though I am attempting a blog, I may never be a "blogger". I'm still not sure how to feel about all that. In the mean time, I simply need an outlet. Sure, I could journal privately and avoid my misgivings of a public forum. For the sake of experiment, I am sharing my thoughts with others this time around...