I thought I'd given up on blogging. Well, there's Facebook now isn't there? And anyway, who would want to know what I think, what I'm doing, what I'm reading, what I'm having for breakfast etc.. (there is twitter for the breakfast updates by the way!).And yet, I'm slowly coming to the conclusion that there is indeed a space on the information superhighway for a few thoughts, resources, stories and general bits and pieces which I find encouraging and inspiring, and which other people might find encouraging and inspiring too.
I've also been unsure of whether the internet per se is the best place for dumping my thoughts and feelings - not least because it is so public, and because you can pretty much find anything that's ever been on the internet, on the internet, even if it's once been deleted. But rest assured, I will still keep a private journal for all that brain-dumping activity - I'll write in there first, and if it's worth sharing it'll appear up here, once I've thought about it a bit!
There have been a few factors of late, which have encouraged me to start blogging again:
1. A conversation with John, our Bishop about a month ago, in which he spoke passionately of the real need for people involved in grassroots ministry in Tassie to find a voice and tell their stories. He is pretty sure there are lots of stories of good things happening on the ground, which would be a great encouragement if other people heard about them.
But Aussie culture as it is means we tend to be a bit shy of telling these stories, out of some kind of misplaced sense of humility - not wanting to brag or boast or show off (sometimes referred to as "tall poppy syndrome"). Challenge received John...
2. Straight after this conversation with John, I spent a week in Adelaide at Tabor college doing a study intensive on "Faith in Stories" with Olive and John Drane. This was a great course and covered a whole host of fascinating experiences and insights ranging through theology, history, oral culture, creative writing, listening, story-telling and a bit of art, role-play and eating raw lemons?.
There is loads I still have to unpack and process from this week, but one thing already is that here again was a prompt to create, to speak, to write in a way which encourages, guides and inspires others.
3. This time of year is quieter for me than most of the rest of the year, because a big chunk of my time is spent with uni students - and they're all on vacation now. So if there is a time of the year where I have the time to fiddle around setting up a blog - this is it.
Wish me luck. And discipline. And perseverance. I'll probably need them!