It’s about time…
January 2, 2012 § 5 Comments
After several years of making threats I have finally made good–I now have a blog.
I must confess that I am a little apprehensive at the outset of this endeavor. Another blog by a another pastor? Yawn.
What more could I possibly offer this already glutted arena? Well, not much. But I hope to offer the family and friends of McIlwain Presbyterian Church–as well as anyone else who logs on–a little pastoral encouragement.
My intention is to use Roblog as a place to do sermon follow-up (and, when necessary, clarification); to give my thoughts on issues and events important to the Christian community; to offer meditations on Christ’s call to “follow him”; and (I hope redemptively) to “opinionate.” It is that last category that usually gets pastors into trouble on the internet, the primary reason being the ease with which the net allows a man to be a loose canon on any ship he desires. In other words, all too often it’s ready, fire, aim.
Sadly, I know this truth personally; my early forays into the blogosphere were not always framed with the self-control appropriate from a believer in Christ, much less a pastor of his people. As a result I found myself apologizing for too many things poorly said and wishing that I had simply given in to 30 minutes of reflection before I hit “post.” It seemed best to get away from it all while the getting was good–that is, before I posted something really stupid.
A fair question, then, is, “Why are you coming back?” One major reason: The value of blogs for effective pastoral ministry, both to the church local and to the saints scattered throughout the world is undeniable. I have often been the beneficiary of thoughtful and redemptive pastoral blogging. Some of those pastors are well known while others, literally, remain anonymous. Sometimes their posts deal with things that might not warrant a whole sermon but are worth considering; other times they address a current event or issue with a helpful immediacy, striking with biblical encouragement or assessment while the providential iron is still hot; frequently the blog serves as the pastor’s personal journal, offering the empathy and solidarity in the common struggle on the way of mortification.
In the end, it seemed to me that I was missing an opportunity for ministry and outreach by not having a blog. In my mind, the biggest challenge is going to be the same as it ever was, so to speak: Exercising self-control. It makes sense then, to follow the following guidelines as I blog:
Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear. And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. (Ephesians 4:29, 30)
Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person. (Colossians 4:6)
Now, I know this seems obvious, the kind of “duh” moment that a pastor ought to be above. Well, maybe that is true. I pray for the grace necessary to learn from my mistakes, for the presence of mind necessary to remember that God’s grace is made perfect in my weakness.
And I promise to wait 30 minutes before I post anything I write.