A Celebration of Blogging

Well. It has been quite a week here.

Those who follow this blog normally know that I rarely post more than twice a week, so six days in a row is pretty much out of control for me. Particularly when the subject at hand is something that makes me feel so extremely out of my league: Blogging. Social media.

Still, I wanted to write about it because strangely, blogging has becoming a defining part of my life.

I would never have seen it coming. But writing through my faith has helped to rebuild it. Writing about my loneliness has brought me new and precious connections. And writing about my cynicism has made it fade to almost nothing. I never would have imagined that any of this would happen when that agent said, “You have to start a blog” and I cried into my French fries for two hours.

If you’ve been reading along this week, I imagine that you’re hoping for something like this too. You want numbers. Of course you do. And that’s totally fine and normal! But under all that, you want connection. You want to change the world in some small way, or at least to change yourself.

If you’re a blogger now, maybe that’s what brings you back day after day, to talk to the Void and to your four faithful subscribers. (Who of us haven’t been there?)

You keep coming back because the idea of sharing something meaningful with others taps into something in your soul.

And I think that’s worth celebrating.

balloons

Sometimes, I think, in the push to become more and better, to have bigger platforms and wider audiences, we forget about the bravery of this simple thing: coming back again and again and hitting Publish. This matters. This is worth noticing. This is a kind of spiritual discipline all of its own — showing up, writing, even when you feel like you have nothing worthwhile to give or to say.

Whatever your writing about, however you’re doing it, I want to celebrate you. I want us to celebrate each other. So today, I invite you to share your blog in the Comments section. (I played with the idea of setting up an “Official Linkup,” but the one linkup tool that I know how to use comes with strict character limits, and I want you to have the freedom to tell us what your blog is about.)

So please. Take a minute and introduce yourself. Then link to one of your favorite posts. Not necessarily the post that has gotten you the most traffic — but the post that feels most true to what you hope to accomplish.

Then take a bit of time to check out a couple of other blogs. Even if you never ever comment…comment. Why not? Offer a word of kindness and encouragement. Put yourself out there. Begin those first tentative steps of building a new strand of community.

Over the next month, I’ll be making my way around each of your blogs as well, because this matters. This is worth noticing, worth reading, worth celebrating.

Thanks for joining me on this journey. I look forward to reading your work.

108 thoughts on “A Celebration of Blogging

  1. I’ve found many “kindred spirits” in books lately. Many of your experiences in When We Were On Fire could not be more different from mine, but I could identify with not fitting in with other Christians and wondering what’s wrong with me that I don’t worship the same way or do X, Y, and Z like they do. Ever since I gave up on seminary, your blog has been somewhat like church to me. Maybe that’s cheesy, but I don’t know how else to describe it. I don’t meet too many Christians these days who are unafraid of tough questions, so I appreciate the honesty of your blog.

    I’m trying to launch a writing career as well, and this is one of my more “raw” posts lately. I call it “Spiritual Promiscuity” because I sometimes feel like I have one foot stuck in my Jewish upbringing, the other in evangelicalism, and I don’t really know where I belong (but I don’t identify as a Messianic Jew. I don’t know why but that term just makes me uncomfortable):

    http://sbethcaplin.com/2014/06/22/spiritual-promiscuity/#more-358

    1. Beth, I loved your comment on the fact that you have found church here on Addie’s blog. For the past year I have been more absent from a church community than I have ever been in my 25 years so far, and in its place has been blogging communities like Addies, Rachel Held Evans, Ben Moberg over at Registered Runaway, Aaron Smith over at Cultural Savage and more. I am glad I am not the only one. I know and hope I will probably find my way back to an actual church community at some point, but for now this has been a place of healing and growth I never expected to find. Ok now I am going to go check out your blog… 🙂

  2. Thanks for the invitation 🙂 I started blogging back in 2008 when I was preparing to move overseas as a missionary/Christian worker in Lebanon. I originally started the blog (www.mallaidh.org) as a point to share about Lebanon and the work I’ve been called to, but over time it has become a place to reflect on life in general. I can’t say that I have a favorite post but I feel this one does point towards the purpose of my platform.
    http://mallaidh.org/2014/03/pilgrim-way-weekly-rambling/

  3. Thank-you for the invite, Addie. I’m exploring the mother-in-law/daughter-in-law relationship in my blog “MILS & DILS: Family, Friends and Allies” where I share what others are teaching me about this sometimes challenging, sometimes wonderful relationship. Here’s a link to my introductory post: http://milsanddils.wordpress.com/2012/12/ See you there!

  4. Thank you so much for this series, Addie. It’s given me so many ideas and has been a great encouragement.

    I blog at http://buildingbridgesinwarzones.com/ where I discuss what it’s like to live within the dissonance of being a Christian sexual minority in the church. I don’t really deal with sides, because I don’t like to be boxed into just a position. There are human beings on both sides of the debate who love Jesus. My blog is an imperfect attempt to love them. I also try to reach straight Christians who want to learn more about our experience. Our stories really are universal. My most-read post continues to be my examination of loneliness in “When We Were on Fire” from a gay Christian perspective. Gay and straight people connected to that one. The reasons and circumstances may be a little different, but this Christian journey involves the same themes we all share. Maybe that’s what truly unites us as the body of Christ.
    And hopefully if I get into grad school fall after next, I’ll be talking a lot about my process of coming out publicly in a Christian academic community, which will probably be a messy but redemptive transformation. So hopefully more exciting things to come. 🙂

  5. Hi Addie – I have really loved what I have seen so far of this series and have set aside part of today to read through each post more thoroughly. Thank you for being SO generous with your knowledge. This post is a good insight into how I think: http://joannadobson.com/2013/10/02/garden-rage/. I think Christians today mostly miss how important these issues are and I want to write more about why I think they should be a priority for us.

  6. Addie, I’m grateful that you started blogging (even though it was painful) because your writing is very good. You have a way with words.

    I write at http://www.andrewgilmore.net where I attempt to help you find your purpose and strengthen your faith so that you will be better prepared to share it. (I think God makes me write about it, because I’m so bad at sharing my faith myself. 🙂 )

    I have many posts I’m proud of, but right now I’m doing a giveaway of the Chronological Study Bible to a random commenter on my blog here: http://www.andrewgilmore.net/2014/06/the-best-bible-i-ever-read-giveaway.html

    Thanks for hosting this! I look forward to checking out the other blogs.

  7. “…we forget about the bravery of this simple thing: coming back again and again and hitting Publish. This matters. This is worth noticing. This is a kind of spiritual discipline all of its own…” Ahh yes! Thanks so much for these encouraging words!

    I blog about the relationships, experiences and practices God uses to form us at awakemysoulblog.com. A favorite post of mine about community is this one: http://wp.me/p1K985-hx

  8. It always is a breath of fresh air to read your writing, and the past week has been very helpful for me. Thank you! I write at http://www.lifelongfling.blogspot.com, where I wrote recently about how one can “reverse the curse” through marriage: http://www.lifelongfling.blogspot.com/2014/06/from-garden-to-city.html. Thank you also for this invitation to share our work. So many times we are told online “stuff” is “marketing” and not community, but it can clearly be about making connections, as you encourage here.

  9. Thanks for this series!

    I’m Amy, working mom of 2 girls in the Southern Suburbs. I have a lifestyle blog where I write about my faith, parenting, marriage, design, all geared towards growing and encouraging other women. (Yeah, maybe I’m still working on that focus you were talking about)

    My post Three Ways to Dig Yourself Out of a Funk is pretty representative of my blog: http://www.amyjbennett.com/2014/06/09/three-ways-to-dig-yourself-out-of-a-funk/

    And here’s my Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/amyjbennettpage

    Thank you! Looking forward to checking out some new blogs.

  10. Addie, this has been a delightful series, and very valuable. Thank you.

    Hi all, I am Brandon Chase. I am married to my High School sweetheart, Marie. We have 2 precious daughters, McKinley and Delaney, and live in Fort Worth, TX.

    My blog is Zōē Perissos, at http://brandonchase.net. The name is inspired by the “abundant Life” of Jesus in John 10:10. Thus, I write about Life, Love, and Church – and how all of these are Christ Himself. I write openly about my journey of what the Lord is showing me about Living by His indwelling Life.

    I recently finished my first book, a free eBook, that I am giving away to subscribers. Rather than mention a specific post here that best reflects me, my voice, and my blog – this book better captures all of that, and more. It is titled “The Path of Freedom: Few find it. Fewer walk it. Be one of the few.” You can read about it here. http://brandonchase.net/2014/06/04/the-path-of-freedom/

    I am also a contributor to House2House Magazine at http://house2housemagazine.com.

    Thanks for reading, and thank you again, Addie, for all you do.

    Many blessings!

  11. Addie, this series has literally shifted my blogging life. I quit my blog in February because I felt it lacked direction and focus, which I felt led to a lack of anyone finding it and following it. This week I created a blog under my own name and uploaded the posts that seem focused on my purpose – to bring hope and healing to the the hurting. I love what God has done to change my life and lead me out of the darkness, and I hope to shine His light for others to see and find their way out of their own darkness.

    This blog post is a summary in a tiny nutshell of who I am and what I hope to share. I’m a broken Christian seeking wholeness through the love, guidance and mighty power of God.

    http://angierobinson.net/broken-christian-finding-wholeness/

    I’m looking forward to getting to know you and learning from you – about writing and about faith.
    Thanks for this series!!
    Angie

    1. Angie, I’m a space cadet and couldn’t get logged in to WordPress to comment on your site (my computer saves my passwords and I’m traveling and not on my usual computer and haven’t had enough coffee today)… but I’ll definitely read more. We’re all broken. And I like to think that the broken places are where God shines through the most.

  12. Finding beauty in the midst of misery. Discovering joy standing side by side with the pain; that’s what I write about. Even though my essays range from my mother’s Alzheimer’s to my classroom, from my outdoor excursions to the everyday mundane, it’s all about a new way of seeing and redemption, how God can redeem anything. Thanks, Addie for sharing your insight, your journey and yourself. http://carolsbeyondreason.blogspot.com/2013/07/in-need-of-miracle.html

  13. Thank you, Addie, for this series. I appreciate how true your words ring, how much sense they make in the face of a real life, with kids and people we love, and the stubborn hope for kindness on the internet. 🙂

    I blog because I know it’s pretty much a necessity. For awhile, I had another blog where I wrote what I thought people wanted to hear. It was a good space in that it got me writing every day, but it was also pretty soul-sucking. So one day, I shut it down and started the space where I currently write. Also, I didn’t tell anyone. It’s been over a year and less than 5 folks from my real life read there, but the few friends I’ve made through it have given me courage… so I’m ready, at least, almost ready to let the folks I love into it.

    My blog is about faith and being a mom and having a marriage, and telling the truth. It’s about the things that make us real. Thanks for this invitation to share.

    http://sarahtornaroberts.com/on-a-break-in-the-heat/

  14. I’ve loved such a down-to-earth series on blogging that focuses more on real life and less on guru-type strategies. I’m a notorious blog lurker, so it’s encouraged me to take time to comment more often. Thanks for this series! Can’t wait to find new blogs through the comments here.

    My blog’s tagline is “giving creatives the courage to uncover and share their stories,” and I think that describes it about as well as anything can. I give practical advice about writing and blogging and sharing your words. But over time, it’s really turned into a place where I try to inspire and encourage writers, to help them cultivate creativity in the everyday, to show them that their words and ideas really matter and need to be shared.

    My favorite recent post is called “Writers: Show Up and Be Vulnerable.” It’s about the first time I realized that my voice mattered and that even though I was shy, it was ok to have a personality. Most of the post is a call to action for writers to get past their fear of what people think and be vulnerable in their writing, because that’s where the magic happens. http://www.brookseditorial.com/show-up-be-vulnerable/

  15. First, I would like to say thank you Addie for the invitation to share a little in this process! I am loving the bits I’ve been able to read from this week…I look forward to going back and digging in a little more this weekend!
    Second, I am really excited to look into some of the other blogs listed here! What a world of creativity! Thank you to each writer here who sits down to write and hits publish! You are a blessing!

    Ok, I’m Melissa. I write at http://the-ebed-house.com
    At the Ebed house we talk about what’s real. We deal with the everyday issues of this faith and how we walk it out. For me, that includes our homestead, raising our twins and honesty. This has been an amazing journey and realizing that others can learn and be encouraged by the Ash of my life is an ongoing topic. I look forward to hearing new voices and maybe making friends with a few others who blog!

    http://the-ebed-house.com/2014/06/10/hair-hair-its-everywhere-or-can-i-just-take-a-moment-to-be-real-about-out-hair-situation/
    This is a link about hair….just one of our many ‘issues’. This blog is new so the depth of it is not great yet. You can also see some of my older posts at http://www.washtheirfeet.blogspot.com

  16. Addie, you already know how much I love your blog — well, anything you write! I’m so glad you are doing this. I love to discover like-minded people. My blog, http://www.prayingupsidedown.com, is named after the book I have coming out in May. It’s about looking at prayer from an artistic perspective as a way to free your mind, break out of the ruts we all get in, and try to see God in the midst of the things we’re in. Because, let’s face it, sometimes He’s the last thing we can see. The idea is that Jesus always took the least-expected point of view — upside down from the way the world saw things — and when we do that, maybe, just maybe, we’ll see more of Him. My book focuses specifically on prayer, but my blog goes wider — faith (and of course doubt), grief, finding God again, writing, etc. Often, but not always, the blog is loosely linked to art. My favorite post is actually an essay I wrote while I was in Positano, Italy for a writers’ workshop with Elizabeth Berg — so it’s not exactly like my other posts, but it tackles grief and loss of faith like much of my other writing does. You can read it here: http://www.prayingupsidedown.com/it-truly-is-grace/

    I’m so looking forward to exploring all of these other blogs. The only bad part is I’m traveling today and won’t have access to the internet much of the time so it might have to wait until tomorrow :-). Thanks, Addie, for instigating this!

  17. What a fun idea! I can’t wait to read some of the other blogs.

    I’m Rachel. I’m an ESL teacher currently living in Guadalajara, Mexico and teaching at a Christian school here. My blog ( http://theinspiredstory.com ) is about life, learning, and language and where Jesus fits into it all. I write about my life here in Mexico and my faith as I travel and grow. Sometimes I also write more political pieces about foreign policy and how it affects my life here or in the US.

    During Lent, I wrote a series that I called “Women of Lent” about the women who interacted with Jesus during his time on earth. This post came out of that and it is one of my favorite things that I have written on the blog. It’s about Jesus’ interaction with the woman at the well and what we can learn from her. http://theinspiredstory.com/women-lent-ever/

    1. I loved checking out your blog! Writing is so beautiful and encouraging (& I love the design, too). Especially enjoyed the women in the Bible series and look forward to more! I’ve just started blogging very recently – writing about faith, depression, and motherhood at http://leahswannhollingsworth.com/ if you are curious – not much topical overlap, but I wanted to say that I enjoyed your writing!

  18. This series has been really great. I’ve loved get insight and perspective from someone who come across as real and doesn’t try to appear to have it all together in the blogging / social media game. Thanks so much for sharing (both your insight and this opportunity)!

    I am Michelle and my blog is about the various moments we all have in our lives. I’ve shared happy moments, sad moments, moments when I was checking things off my bucket list, and I also share ‘Literary Moments’ where I write about some of the many books I’ve read. My blog is here: http://momentswithmichellem.blogspot.com/

    Here is one of my favorite posts: http://momentswithmichellem.blogspot.com/2012/08/a-letter-to-my-teenage-self.html

    I’d love to have any of you visit, hang around awhile, and let me know what you think. I plan to do the same to some of the other blogs shared here.

  19. I’ve really appreciated this series, Addie. I’ve been in a blogging rut lately, and this helped a lot.

    I’m unpacking some tough questions about my Pentecostal/fundamentalist background on my blog. When I started blogging, I was posting everything from recipes, to my life as a new mom, to some of my struggles with church and faith. It didn’t take long for me to realize that it’s my faith story that keeps me up at night, and it is the story I need to share with others.

    Here is a recent post that captures who I am as a blogger. http://www.carlygelsinger.com/do-you-remember/

    I’m looking forward to stopping by some of the blogs posted here. Addie, thanks for hosting!

  20. My blog is http://jesabes.com.
    It started as sort of a mommy blog, but I found I don’t write about the kids as
    often as I would have thought. My main themes are reviews of books I’ve read or
    recipes I’ve made and chronicling my and my husband’s journey to do every one
    of a list of 50 stay-at-home date nights. It’s a lot of fun.

  21. Thank you so much for posting this series. It’s be very helpful and encouraging to me as a blogger. I also appreciate this post because I love finding new blogs to follow but don’t always know where to find them. And here is a virtual treasure trove of new blog reading potential!

    My blog still trying to find its place. I write about creativity, my journey in writing my book, post my photography, and occasionally I’ll just write about what’s on my mind. One of the posts I really liked is http://jumpingoutoftrees.com/scattered-thoughts/

  22. I love the way you approach all of this, Addie. Thank you for being such a lovely, honest voice.

    I too have found that writing about loneliness and faith have brought connection, and a greater faith. So wonderful to view writing as a creative and healing tool in the world, as well as on the page.

    My blog is called Little Did She Know. I write about faith and working through questions and untangling the knots of my evangelical past. I try to stay suspended in the tension as often as I can, not tying things up in neat bows. I write about being single. I tell stories about what has happened, and what is happening now. And I write about food, because I’m a food critic who is also an anxious cook, and the beautiful tension in that just won’t leave me alone.

    I’m going to share a post called Life as a Crepe. It’s one of my favorites, and the sort of post that I’d like to be known for, I think. http://www.littledidsheknow.net/2014/01/15/life-as-a-crepe/

    Thanks so much for this opportunity! xo

    1. This post is delightful! I’m pretty sure the last time I tried making crepes I set off the smoke alarm … twice. I’m going places in the culinary world, I tell you! 😉

      Thanks for sharing!

  23. Hi Addie. I wondered when this topic would start seeming almost inevitable for you! Glad it did, and that you’re taking it on.

    I blog at http://DavidKFlowers.com. I write provocative and thoughtful stuff about the Christian faith (maybe a bit like you and Rachel Held Evans?), and deal with emotional issues a lot like depression, relationships, anxiety, stuff like that. (I’m an ordained minister and licensed counselor.)

    This post is pretty typical of what I do: http://davidkflowers.com/2012/08/our-missed-opportunity-with-chick-fil-a/

    Thanks again for doing this. I’ll be checking out a lot of these blogs in the next few weeks. Looking greatly forward to it.

  24. Thanks for doing this series! I’ve been enjoying each post this week. 🙂
    I blog at adelasteria.blogspot.com. I started blogging because my therapist told me I had lost my voice – and I had. For most of my life I have been an anxious, silent person who tries not to say anything out of fear, so I decided that one thing I could do was write with stark honesty, or try to at any rate.
    As I grew up in a conservative evangelical culture that considered antidepressants sinful, yet was recently placed on such medication, I’ve been re-examining my view of Christianity and ideas about the universe, humanity, etc. on my blog. I’m especially concerned with mental health, though I’m no expert and can only speak from my experiences dealing with anxiety, depression, and an eating disorder.

    1. Hi there – I felt drawn to this as I also walked through a ‘are antidepressants sinful’ path (and concluded they weren’t). For what it’s worth, I host a guest series where others have written about their experience of depression here http://tanyamarlow.com/tag/depression/
      One of the posts is quotes from Rick and Kay Warren, who come from a firmly evangelical fold, and who have very sensible and compassionate things to say about Christians with mental health issues, particularly in the light of their son’s suicide.
      I’m sure your writing will be helpful to others on a similar path, too. Sending much love x

    2. I also write about faith and depression (& motherhood) over at my (Very!) new blog, grace in the darkness (http://leahswannhollingsworth.com/). I have struggled with depression for nearly two decades and often found it at odds with my faith — or what I believed was my faith because of the particular faith community I was in at the time. I look forward to checking out your blog!

    3. Kelly, your post “I left my faith at the altar” could not be more true of what I have been going through for so long now. Finding communities like this where I find other people who are able to articulate my experience and pain in such away that I feel I can breathe again because I know I am not alone is truly a miracle. Thank you for sharing. I am just starting out over at my site, but I recently wrote this post that attempts to describe my roller coaster ride with broken faith – in a poem-ish kind of way. http://untoldstoriesabout.us/?p=184

        1. I loved how you articulated questioning so much… that has been so hard for me. Especially when you are more used to faith being a part of your everyday lifestyle then not. For so long that lifestyle included knowing the answer and reason for everything I believed, but suddenly like you I found myself holding on to them not because I truly believed them but because I thought if I ever put them down that my world would fall apart. Funny thing is, it did anyways. So now its on to picking up the pieces. Thanks for reading it.

          1. I think you just articulated my own struggles perfectly, too. For a while I was a Christian simply because I was afraid not to be, and then because I desperately wanted to be, even though I’m often still full of questions and doubts.

  25. Hi Addie. What a great series. Kind of a series on blogging and social media for those of us who aren’t consummate professionals, yet. I appreciate the insights and encouragement. And I think this post summed it up so well. At some point we need to be more focused on the love of what we do and less on the numbers. We need to find joy in the creating and not in just the successes which can be so fleeting. And somewhere in it all we each find healing in our souls because by faith we are stepping out to share what has helped us most.

    And thanks for the opportunity to share our blogs. I write “Spirit Hacker” at http://www.douglasarmey.com.

    All the posts are pretty typical. So I think the home page linked above is a good place to start.

    My blog is about being a Jesus follower writing about the adventure of discovering the amazing life God offers from a non-religious perspective.

    I enjoy your blog. Hope you enjoy mine as well.

  26. Thanks again, Addie, for this excellent series – and now, for this invitation to share a little about ourselves. I’m an odd duck in the blogging world, older than most and in the last (hopefully long!) phase of an interesting life. I try to write about all of it and often use photos to tell the story, too. Here is a post from early this year, the introduction to a small series I did, that sort of captures a bit about who I am and what I do: http://dianatrautwein.com/2014/01/delving-into-the-mystery-introducing-q-a/

  27. Thank you for this series. I’m a new blogger and it’s given me a lot to think about. I’m not even at the “branding” point – just trying to be more intentional and thoughtful with my own writing. Something I have tried to be better about is commenting. With a toddler, I often read blogs on my phone in quick moments and the comments are formed in my mind, but never materialize. I’ve given myself a goal to comment once per day – it seems more achievable than trying to engage all the time with everyone. I appreciate the time and resources you’ve given – I’m sure I’ll come back to these posts in the months to come!

    Here’s a recent post that captures the spirit of what I usually blog about: http://annierim.wordpress.com/2014/06/27/backyard-camping/

  28. Hi Addie! I’m so glad you took the time this week to talk about blogging, offer encouragement and tips and share what you’ve learned along the way. I’m a reluctant blogger as well, though I think it’s because I’m still figuring out WHY I’m doing it… and where I want it to go. Anyway, I just closed up shop on one blog (http://www.riverintowords.com) and have transitioned to my new place – as myself. http://www.karenohuber.com. It’s given me what I feel I so desperately need right now: white space. Margin. And a fresh start. And here’s one of my favourite posts: http://www.karenohuber.com/blog/how-stupid-gets-washed-away. Thanks for reading… and for writing.

  29. Love this series, Addie! Thanks for the invitation!
    I was in Christian ministry for a decade, and then I got sick, and I became a writer. The question that drives me is this: ‘what does it look like to relate to God in the midst of suffering and hard times, especially when the suffering is ongoing?’ I love wrestling with not really the theology of suffering, but the spirituality of suffering, and I host a popular guest series, ‘God and Suffering: Our Story’ with such amazing writers as Addie Zierman 🙂 et al

    This is one of my favourites (and was a Sunday Superlative) – No Job for Job (when the comforters need comforting) – http://tanyamarlow.com/no-job-for-job-when-the-comforters-need-comforting/

  30. Thanks, Addie! I appreciate the encouragement of your words. I blog because I love to write, simple as that I guess. I’ve had many blogs in the past decade but never felt like I had a voice. Then, a few years ago, it just clicked. My blog is about my spiritual journey – my faith based on personal experiences – and being married to a youth pastor. Not only am I married to a pastor, but both of our dads are pastors so I’m surrounded! My parents raised me United Pentecostal and that actually stunted me from growing in my relationship with God for a really long time – though I wouldn’t have recognized it. Anyway, I could go on and on… I don’t have a favorite post so I figured I’d just share the most recent: http://marriedayouthpastor.com/god-answered-my-prayer/

  31. Because I believe it is important to “remember and Celebrate” what God has done in my life, I started blogging as a way ago record my personal/spiritual journey that began with participating in group Spiritual Direction in our Worship Arts ministry at church. There I began to learn to be still, pay attention and learn to hear God’s voice in a new way. That fall, my one remaining sibling died of hyperthermia after getting lost in the mountains of Montana. (I had lost two siblings as a child). It was a defining “Before and After” moment for me.

    This blog began in 2010, from journal entries as i journeyed through grief and loss, to a new way of being. My message is that God is GOOD and he DELIGHTS in me. I still struggle with doubt, but this i have learned to be true.

    This particular post entitled “The Dance” was written in 2008 and speaks to pressing into the hard questions that come with a journey of a fresh look at my faith, along with my doubts. My posts are reflections (on the short side) of my thought on life, faith and family from a grandmother’s perspective.

    http://carolhiestand.com/the-dance/08/

    1. Addie, I want to also add that I have so enjoyed this weeks posts. we are on “vacation” with our family of four boys, helping them move and your blogs have been read on the fly, and i’ll be revisiting often. love what you do here.

  32. Thanks for this series, Addie. It’s been informative in a “my pal is helping me” sort of way–rather than feeling overly technical and information-based. It answered a lot of questions–some of which I had never thought to ask!

    I love, love, love to write. I strive to be as transparent as possible and always hope to encourage others. This post is one I wrote a few months ago–and it really struck a nerve within my church ministry staff circles. After my husband stepped out of traditional ministry to manage our local church camp, I felt like I was finally free to say all of the things a minister’s wife/family is unable to say. It was so encouraging and heartbreaking at the same time to have so many shares and comments and private messages from other ministry families in the same boat.

    http://amandahavery.blogspot.com/2013/04/the-assault-on-ministry-family-part-i.html

    1. I, too, am a sympathetic puker.

      I’m also a former pastor’s kid turned minister turned former minister (okay, praise and worship leader, but I’m counting it). I haven’t had the garbanzos to write about all of that yet. Kudos to you for saying what “simply isn’t said”.

      Your family is adorable!

  33. I’m also grateful for this series and for the wealth of resources that you have shared (which I’m sure it will take me most of the summer to get through even in part!). Thank you also for the opportunity to share with each other what and why we are all writing.

    I’ve just started a blog, called grace in the darkness (guess there’s not a way to hyperlink in comments? home page is http://leahswannhollingsworth.com/), and I’d love for new blog-friends to check it out. I write about the intersection of motherhood, faith, and depression. How do you live with these three? How do they talk to each other, affect each other, help or hurt each other?

    There’s more about WHY I’m writing here (http://leahswannhollingsworth.com/mission-vision/) and probably my favorite post – although possibly also the most raw and hard for some to read – is here (http://leahswannhollingsworth.com/2014/05/07/tough-week/#more-7).

    Looking forward to exploring other blogs mentioned in this section as well!

  34. Hello!

    I saw you pop up on Jamie Wright’s website and was SO excited to find your blog! I flew through your book about two weeks ago. Dishes were neglected, children ran wild, and I cried many healing tears. It was WONDERFUL.

    This post resonates with one I just wrote about making ripples even if you can’t make waves.

    http://www.walkerwhimsy.com/2014/06/platforms-and-ripple-effect.html

    It’s a bit different than the usual fare on {walker whimsy}, which is motherhood, my hobbies/interests, and a lot of random hodgepodge (sounds awesome, right?). I haven’t ventured into writing about the dark scary corners of myself, but it’s a goal of mine to eventually get everything out on paper (computer screen?).

    Because, you know, that makes my whole blog sound even _more_ awesome. Dark scary corners and randomness. 😛 Good grief.

    Thank you for all you do!

    Caiti

  35. Addie! I’ve really loved this series, and I always love your writing. I’ve loved blogging so much for many of the same reasons you talk about, but I have also found myself stumbling a little lately. Maybe it’s not sustainable, or it’s just a hard season. Regardless, I feel like one of the main reasons I want to blog is because I want to change people’s perceptions of the folks who live in our inner-city neighborhood, to share our story not to tell how brave we are or how great we are, but to tell stories of how big God is. . . . I dont know. Anyways, I dont even know how to pick a post or what-not, but I really like these two posts: http://thestanleyclan.blogspot.com/2014/01/the-longer-way-home.html and http://thestanleyclan.blogspot.com/2013/12/faq-about-adoption.html (I’ve really enjoyed the whole FAQ series actually) 🙂

  36. Addie, What a grand idea. One of my favorite parts of blogging is finding the obscure writer and encouraging them. Numbers don’t always equal best writing. I have loved some pieces I have read. That is a big part of why I am here. Online. Ministering to folks worldwide as I do at my local church. In Jesus’ name. Traces of Faith was started because I saw a way to tell a bigger faith story. To share how God is at work. In my life. In yours. In those all around us. To celebrate that. And grow in our faith. Many of my posts share the stories of others as well. Here is one example:http://www.tracesoffaith.com/blog/2014/06/when-church-becomes-your-family.html

  37. What generosity, Addie! Thank you for using your little plot of blog land in big, beautiful ways.

    I write over at http://www.kristenlunceford.com where I try to point people to the truth about who God says they are, whether they are mothers, church planters, wives, adoptive parents, or women seeking to live intentionally with Jesus but who are a little unsure about how.

    If you are up for a little Christmas in July, my post, “Mary: She Struck No Poses” will show you how I try to encourage my readers to know that they are seen and that they are enough:

    http://www.kristenlunceford.com/2013/12/mary-she-struck-no-poses.html

    1. I just stopped by and read your post about Mary and the Approval Part 2 one. “You are significant and preapproved and utterly cherished. Not because you are ‘good,’ but because you are Mine.'” What a beautiful quote. And something I need to remember. Thanks!

  38. This has been a fantastic series. Thank you so much for sharing! And for providing the opportunity for us to share as well – I’m looking forward to finding some new writers in your comments section. 🙂

    I blog at http://choosingthismoment.blogspot.com/. The name has a double-meaning: first, in the Joshua sense of “choosing this day” whom I will serve, and second, the idea that we need to be fully alive, fully present in this moment, in the here and now – to choose to live in this moment. My goal is to use this blog to explore those two ideas. (I talk about this in a bit more depth on my “About This Blog” page: http://choosingthismoment.blogspot.com/p/about-this-blog.html).

    Last year, my husband and I attempted to adopt an infant. After she’d been with us five months, the courts ruled that she should be returned to her birth family. Much of the writing on my blog has been me processing how to “choose this moment” in the midst of pain. This post deals with that theme: http://choosingthismoment.blogspot.com/2013/12/suffering-and-small-things-and-gratitude.html

  39. Thanks for the opportunity, Addie! I’m so excited to read everyone’s blogs and expand my feedly list!

    Like lots of others, I started blogging indiscriminately about everything from nail polish to breaking up with my boyfriend to trying to find a church. I’ve narrowed my focus a little since, and although my posts are interspersed with weird things my coworkers have said or quotes I found inspiring, my blog is now mostly about discovering my faith in the transition from childhood to adulthood. I’m an overachieving, intellectual Type A oldest child, and a lot of my faith journey has involved realizing that I don’t have what it takes to be good enough at everything and that I already am good enough for God. I’m trying to celebrate my strengths and accept my weaknesses all at the same time. I’m also still in the process of figuring out what faith means for ME, as an uneasy alumna of the evangelical tradition.

    This is a post I’m really proud of: http://fraughtwithpossibilities.tumblr.com/post/81549152721/what-i-wish-i-could-say-and-why-i-wont

  40. Addie, thanks for all the tips and encouragement. I’ve been blogging irregularly for about six months and I’m still trying to figure it all out– topics, frequency, purpose. I look forward to going through some of your resources and improve what I’ve already done.

    I blog at http://jywatkins.wordpress.com and so far it’s been somewhat of a way for me to process some hard moments in my life, a recent hurtful church experience and the death of my father-in-law. I think my favorite post so far is from that period of grieving: http://jywatkins.wordpress.com/2013/12/29/in-sickness-and-in-health/

    I like exploring those hard moments because life is so hard sometimes and figuring how to cope is, I think, universal. And finding God in those moments can hard but is so important. My other favorite idea is profiling people in my life and how their friendships have shaped me– those parts of a relationship that really matter and change you. I look forward to exploring that more and also reading the other blogs linked here. Thanks for the opportunity!

  41. I started my blog after I had retired while my husband and I were waiting to sell our house in “hotter ‘n hell” Dallas, and move to our forever home in Tacoma, Washington. At first I used it to simply VENT about my frustrations with being caught in a living situation I didn’t want. During the three years we tried to sell the house, my blog wandered from frustration with still being in Dallas, to a chronicle of my everyday life to a “Life Review” as a bunch of stories for my grandchildren. Sprinkled in with the other posts were series that followed the liturgical year – especially Advent and Lent.

    We finally sold the house two years ago and moved to Tacoma and a retirement community. I recounted all our adventures on the way, and, after we got here, I did a lot of posts about our sightseeing around the Seattle-Tacoma area (including visits to Mt. Rainier and Mt. Saint Helens.

    Recently my blog has been more about the social justice issues I have always been interested in – hunger – global warming – voting rights – etc. I still do posts about sightseeing, complete with lots of pictures, and I’ve just finished a “photo-a-day” series focused on the build-up to the Presbyterian Church (USA) General Assembly.

    My blog is named “An Aging Liberal Hippy from the Left Coast” so that may be all you really need to know about it and me. Here is a post in one of my more prophetic voices – http://abbiewatters.wordpress.com/2014/01/22/food-a-diet-update/

  42. Thank you for taking the time for this series, Addie. And for the opportunity to introduce ourselves and our blogs and to get to know each other.

    I’m currently taking a bit of a break at my blog Powerfully Quiet, but previously I’d been blogging for a year and a half about the hodgepodge of ideas that make up my brain and life: living abroad (in Thailand); walking through a dimly lit, scraggly wilderness; and having those days when all you can do is share another’s words of inspiration. My favorite post thus far is one I got ridiculously fired up about, and I think slash hope it shows. Like Cara said about her post, it’s the kind of thing I’d like to be known for. It’s called When I’m Asking You to Take It Back: Don’t Call Me a Princess. http://powerfullyquiet.wordpress.com/2013/12/08/when-im-asking-you-to-take-it-back-dont-call-me-a-princess/

  43. I love this series and I love your book. Your book brought back many memories of being in youth ministry during that time frame. I started blogging a year ago, at the time thinking that I would try to write about life as a mom from a humorous perspective. I very quickly began to write a bit more from my faith perspective. Because of this, I fear others at times probably find me all over the place in my blog. One of my favorite blog entries, though no where near a most read post, is about seeing the argument between two neighbours wage on, while I try to remind myself that they are not unlike myself and the battles I fight every day. http://terrishoyt.wordpress.com/2014/05/25/the-little-string/
    Thanks for the opportunity to share here.

  44. Thanks for this fantastic series, Addie. I’ve spent several years reading (and agonizing!) about every angle of building a successful blog, and I was delighted to learn some really helpful new tips from the information you shared this week.

    May I share two links to my blog? They represent two topics I find myself returning to (or hoping to return to) most often in my writing.

    – This one’s about building new memories with my Dad after dementia changed his personality: http://mariefriesen.com/?p=503

    – And here’s why I think believers can benefit from learning about the human brain: http://mariefriesen.com/?p=5620

    So that’s my humble contribution to this thread. Thanks again for your hard work on this series!

  45. Thank you, Addie, for putting together this series. As a young, rather clueless blogger, it was so helpful. It also is pushing me to do new things (like actually comment here – I have lurked around on your blog ever since attending your reading at Northwestern last winter, but I am pretty timid about real interaction).

    I’ve been blogging at http://agirldefined.wordpress.com/ for about a year. I’m learning that my blog is the venue through which I’m figuring out who I am as I transition into adulthood. I eoften explore how my faith interacts with my everyday life and how the ordinary can be sacred and meaningful. My blog is also a space for me to get away from the academic writing I do as a college student and play around with fun topics and writing style. If you’re looking for somewhere to start, http://agirldefined.wordpress.com/2014/02/09/answers/ is one of the posts where I feel I’m most honest and authentic.

  46. Thanks for the celebration and invitation! The community and resources are useful, especially as I’ve just been stepping up my blogging & social media the past several months.

    I blog about religion and mental health at http://www.juliapowersblog.com.

    A post that means a lot to me is “Speaking Out About Spiritual Abuse” (http://juliapowersblog.com/2014/03/27/the-root-of-spiritual-abuse). The post gave me the chance to share publicly, for the first time, what spiritual abuse can look like and how I experienced it. This was followed by 2 posts on ways that I regained trust in church via counseling and community. The beauty of blogging about this was that it didn’t just help me but also had several people messaging in and saying “me too!” and starting real conversations.

  47. Loved this series. You have a lot of blogs to check out! You’ve already been to mine (when I posted about your book) so feel free to ignore me. I’m looking forward to checking out these links! I’m http://kirstenoliphant.com

  48. Your space on the Internet is one of the best, Addie, thanks for the chance to do this. I write at http://www.omodiaries.com, a mom of four living in rural Ethiopia. I write because it makes me pay attention. I don’t think my blog follows much of your good advice, but it is what it is, I guess! Also, not having Internet access kind of slows me down. 😉 ‘These are the Days’: http://omodiaries.com/2014/04/21/these-are-the-days/ pretty much sums up my life and writing these days…

  49. I manage social media for the newspaper where I work, and I think you had the best advice this week I’ve heard in a while: be kind. So there’s that. 😉

    The most recent post on my blog is a write-up with some tips from an event I went to hosted by Twitter. But that’s what I do, not what I really love to write about. I love to “seek truth and report it” — especially in the weird places where nobody thinks to look for it. Case in point, I really liked this recent post about Marian apparitions: http://www.emmillerwrites.com/2014/06/is-virgin-mary-appearing-at-medjugorje.html?m=1

    Looking forward to reading some new blogs — thanks for organizing this, Addie!

  50. I am really grateful for this blog series, Addie. This is a strange and beautiful world, the blogging world, and I find myself overwhelmed by it much of the time. Your connectedness to your readers is encouraging because I never want to lose that. I am a mental health professional and I am working on my PhD in counseling, but my passion for sharing my writing didn’t kick in until we adopted our son almost 2 years ago. I write about faith, adoption, motherhood and society’s impact on our relationships and roles. The post I want to share is called Give It a Year…

    http://karinfields.com/2013/08/14/give-it-a-year/

    It is reminder of how much can change in a year and how choosing faith is much more rewarding than knowing everything in advance.
    I have already read some of these amazing blogs, and I look forward to reading many more. I would be honored if you would visit my site at http://karinfields.com and say hello. 🙂

  51. Addie, your blog series appeared at a perfect time for me. It was amazing and clearly detailed so many issues with which I have been struggling. As a late blooming blogger, I am still trying to find my voice and my target audience. The blogging world is noisy and I have neither the time nor patience to strategize too much but your series really inspired. I pray that my expressed thoughts are iron sharpening and that the years grace my words with wisdom.

    I loved your book as well. Admittedly, I found myself reevaluating our intended “Christian parenting” and winced at times. I resonated though with so much you had to say.

    This is my most recent blog post. I am back on the horse after a couple month hiatus and I plan to keep riding.

    http://unswervinglyheld.blogspot.com/2014/06/the-writing-on-wall-or-table.html

  52. Hey Addie,

    I loved every one of your posts this week and found all the information to be really, really helpful! So thank you again for doing the series. I started blogging largely as a response to all the healing and encouragement I have found through reading blogs like yours and many others. For so long I felt so alone in my crises of faith, until I stumbled on to Rachel Held Evans blog and into a whole new world of familiar souls. After merely being a reader for several years, I finally have come to the place where I feel safe enough and confident enough to participate. A post I am pretty proud of, is actually a part of a series that has been one of the most difficult series for me to write. It is my first series and it has many imperfections, but I love that I finally found the courage to post it. I have been working on many versions of these posts for almost a year now, not knowing how to really say what was so deep in my heart without hurting others I love in the process. This kind of honesty is scary for me, but so desperately needed. Post 2 of the series can be found here at http://untoldstoriesabout.us/?p=117, but in reality I am pretty proud of all of them.

    Now to go find some more familiar souls in this thread. 🙂 Thanks again for bringing us together!

    Kallie C.

  53. Thank you for your helpful and encouraging words! I’ve started a blog that is really more of a journal than anything. I need to set some goals and define it a bit, and your posts from last week will be very useful to that end.

    I started reading your blog after reading your book all the way through in 1 weekend, crying and shouting at long-gone preachers from my past all the while. My poor boyfriend thought I’d gone nuts. Your memoir moved me in a very profound way, and I appreciate you putting yourself out there.

    Here is my most recent blog post–the first of a series, and maybe even the new streamlined direction of my blog, who knows? 🙂 I hope you enjoy it: https://hopewrites14.wordpress.com/wp-admin/post.php?post=137&action=edit&message=6&postpost=v2

  54. I started a new blog just this year as I moved to the Netherlands, as a way to share Dutch culture with my family and friends. My ideal is that I write for an international audience, perhaps those who are foreigners in other lands, with an eye toward getting to know the people and culture of the host country, not just remaining in a bubble.
    Here are two favorites…is that allowed??
    My identity crisis of sorts – http://americandutchess.blogspot.nl/2013/12/slipping-through-cracks-am-i-expat-or.html
    and a practical one –
    http://americandutchess.blogspot.nl/2014/06/buitenlanders-in-netherlands.html

  55. Addie, thank you so much for the writing about blogging–it is such a powerful genre, and has been so amazing as a writer to start learning its demands.

    I write about faith–learning how to take little steps, and break down my sometimes overblown expectations into little yeses I say to God. I’ve found “faith” breaks out of the neat picket fence of church and is really lived out in everything, especially, for me, parenting, homeschooling, and art-making.

    Here’s a post I love: http://www.heathercaliri.com/2014/02/24/the-magic-portal-between-how-we-treat-our-kids-and-how-we-treat-ourselves/

  56. Thanks, Add for this lovely post and being so open to the chatting with so many other bloggers.

    I am an ordained pastor in the Baptist tradition. I was previously a senior pastor of a church in Northern VA but now am finding my way as a pastor without a particular congregation as volunteer alongside my husband at Feed the Children– an international organization that is working to ensure that fewer children go to bed at night. Kevin is the CEO of this organization and I am part of the writing/ social media team.

    I always try to be honest in my writing on my blog “Preacher on the Plaza,” even though it is hard sometimes because of the public-ness of my husband’s job with my own spiritual wrestlings.

    This was one post that I wrote a couple months ago where I talked about my depression on the holiest of all holy days, Easter and how I dealt with it. I liked how it turned out and the fact that it was honest: http://elizabethhagan.com/2014/04/27/kind-christian-part-2/

  57. Addie, I feel much the same way you do about what I write. I love to find significance in the things God hands us in life and if they can be put in words, all the better. You do that so well. We recently celebrated Father’s Day and I wrote a post for my dad – in some ways it is specific to him but in a broader sense it’s about honoring people for accepting the place that God put them. Thanks for letting me share it. http://shirleyjdietz.com/2014/06/14/honor/

  58. Hi Addie! I know I’m a bit late to the party, but I wanted to say how much I appreciated your entire series last week on blogging. You not only shared your own experience, but you put out such a wealth of resources that I wouldn’t even have known about, i.e. Buffer, BlogLovin, Pinterest mouseover links, etc. Thank you for making the process easier to figure out for beginners and advanced bloggers alike!

    I am just in the beginning of my blogging journey as I approach the final year of my MFA at Northwestern University. Because I write nonfiction, I’ve been told the same thing you’ve written about previously: PLATFORM, PLATFORM, PLATFORM! In the hopes of turning my thesis into a book, I’ve jumped on the blogging train to try and create some momentum moving forward. Though it is just in the beginning stages, I included one of my posts that explain what I hope the blog can accomplish and encompass. (http://www.kristinleejensen.com/blog/2014/6/29/why-this-blog)

    I am making my way through When We Were On Fire, and I have to applaud you on the vividness of your scenes and the vulnerable, transparent way you allow us inside your head. It is a delight to go on the journey with you through the pages of your memoir, and I can’t wait to keep reading.

    All the best to you!

    Kristin Lee Jensen

  59. I loved this series because I know I break the blogging “rules” all the time. I write just to write and sometimes I care about numbers and presentation and sometimes I just don’t have it in me. This was useful information and I appreciate it being given in such a non-commericial or competitive spirit.

    I blog primarily about raising a child with a disability. My son Aidan has seizures, uses a power wheelchair and is non-verbal. Sure there are struggles but there are a lot of celebrations as well. My community has rallied around us in the most life-giving beautiful ways. I wrote this post when our house was under construction to make it more accessible. It’s mostly about the pain of Aidan’s seizures.

    Bleeding Words: http://teamaidan.wordpress.com/2013/01/23/bleeding-words/

    I look forward to reading other posts here.

    Heather

  60. I finally had a chance to read through all the posts in your series. Thank you for writing and thank you for encouraging me as a writer!

    I have so many ideas about who I want to be as a writer and what kind of “niche” role I fit into as a small speck in the ever expanding bloggerverse, but those ideas never get written down. My blog has bounced back an forth between serious intellectual musings to mere random life updates, and I’ve never really settled into anything consistent.

    I’m most proud of this post, because it was the first time I felt like I was writing from the heart and writing for myself – not for an audience. I was expecting it to be controversial amongst some of my friends/family, but instead was met with support and great discussion: http://www.marielmohns.blogspot.com/2014/02/in-beginning.html

  61. Hi Addie,

    I’m late here this week but just caught up on all of your blogging posts. Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts. I’m just diving into blogging world after 3 years of a mentor telling me that it was time to start one. This story is the reason I wanted to start a blog. It’s a story that I think the world needs to hear about generosity, love, and the power of God. http://www.alismithtx.com/2014/06/26/dontes-home/

  62. Addie,
    I really enjoyed this series. Thanks for taking the time because I know series can take a lot of time and effort.
    My blog is called A Work of Heart. Under the umbrella of encouragement I have 3 aims, to help myself and others pay attention to God in their midst, to pursue rest and to remember they are not alone.

    So hard to pick one post but this one is close to my mom heart and keeps speaking to me.

    http://helenwashington.com/2014/03/25/i-no-longer-wear-a-watch/

    Thanks for the opportunity to share and also to gather some new blogs to enjoy.

    Cheers!

  63. Thanks for the great series, Addie. As always, I was encouraged, inspired, and moved by your words. And thanks for the opportunity to share.

    My blog is called Such Small Hands which comes from a line in an e.e. cummings poem that goes, “Nobody, not even the rain, has such small hands. It’s a reminder to me that I can’t carry it all, and that I’m not supposed to, but also part of a private mantra that small hands can do big things too. Like many here, I grew up in a strict evangelical Christian community and am still exploring and discovering what faith looks like outside of that. My blog has evolved a lot over the years, but at it’s core it’s about searching for purpose and finding grace.

    I recently published an article about sex over at Relevant (http://www.relevantmagazine.com/life/relationships/4-lies-church-taught-me-about-sex) and what feels like a bajillion people have loved or hated it, so that’s been taking up a lot of my blog space this month, but here is a post I did before all of that about being honest and vulnerable about who I am. It’s not my most beautiful post, but I think it gives a good idea of what I’m about. http://lilyellyn.wordpress.com/2014/05/12/to-tell-you-the-truth-in-which-i-introduce-the-real-me/

  64. I know I am late, I have four blogs, thought I don’t write on them all consistently, so I’ll use the main two:
    (1) http://daniel-brockhan.blogspot.com/ . Here is my public blog where I write about my life, faith, and other issues.http://daniel-brockhan.blogspot.com/2014/06/self-acceptance-is-not-excuse.html – This is my newest post, basically my reaction to people who use self-acceptance as an excuse for bad habits or behaviors.

    (2) http://daniel-single-me.blogspot.com/ . Here is my blog about being single. being in ministry and male, I find I cant be public about being single or dating for that matter, so I write this blog semi-anonymously. My newest blog here is: http://daniel-single-me.blogspot.com/2014/06/on-dating-and-becoming-who-you-want-to.html .Basically how before, after, and during dating you need to learn who you are and who you want to be, bettering yourself. but my most popular post here was this one: http://daniel-single-me.blogspot.com/2012/01/letter-to-females.html, where I wrote a letter to females, married and single saying all the things I want to say in person but cant because of society and whatnot.

    Have a good one Addie!
    ~ Daniel B.

  65. Mine is called “Holy Hugs”. It’s not really a blog because it is not a linear sequence of posts of my thoughts through time. It is simply a gallery of word art in no particular order … a growing collection of poetry, prose, and much of which teeters gracefully on the slender boundaries between the two. My favorite, so far, is one which will require the consumption of several Diet Cokes or glasses of wine to enjoy to its fullest. Take your time. Watch the movie in your heart.

    https://sites.google.com/site/holyhugs/the-garden

    With all His Love,
    Jim

  66. Hi Addie, thanks for this opportunity! I’m a new blogger, and have been struggling to find a rhythm to fit blogging into my crazy-busy, 4 kids and part-time work, life. I started out intending my blog to be a bit about kids and a bit about faith… it’s turned out to be almost entirely about faith, with very little about kids! I come from a fundie cult background, and this year made a visit to my family (who are still in the cult), and many of my posts have risen from that experience. This particular post is trying to describe emotional upheaval involved in the visit. http://iananddonnac.blogspot.co.nz/2014/05/home.html

  67. Addie, I am in bed recovering from nasal surgery and just had a chance to read through all these posts.. wow. THANK YOU. I am going to be spending some serious time this summer going back through all of this. I appreciate your perspective as a “non blogger” blogger more than you can know. I am in an interesting place trying to figure out where to land online… I am a photographer (with a blog for photography stuff), an abolitionist (with a blog for anti human trafficking/abolition stuff), a mom (with a blog acting as a journal for my girls someday) and a traveler (with a blog that hasn’t gone live yet, but that will chronicle our traveling adventures)…. Yeah. I am exhausted just writing that out. And trying to figure out how to streamline it all somehow. Clueless at the moment, but hoping to push through and figure out where I can best land and connect and use my voice and writing for me, my girls, my craft and my passions…. as for my post that has meant the most to me? … probably this one: http://doalittlegood.com/to-my-daughters/

  68. Finally getting caught up on my blog-reading, and thought I’d accept the invitation to introduce myself as well. I’m a rather sporadic blogger, though I have gone through seasons of blogging regularly (unfortunately, right now is not one of them).

    My blog started as a way for me to document a dream internship five years ago, but has morphed into thoughts on life and faith as I struggle through both. I’ve been struggling with depression (this time) for the last six months or so, and with doubt for a lot longer. Gradually, I have become more and more honest and more and more vulnerable on my blog about where I am right now. I often find it easier to write the real than to speak it.

    I think my most recent blog is actually a really good representation of all this, so that’s what I’ll share with you: http://thebendsintheroad.wordpress.com/2014/06/06/are-these-my-glasses/

  69. What an amazing resource – both the series, but even more (to me!) this community here of folks. Thanks, Addie, for it all. I’ve especially resonated with what you have to say about blogging without losing your soul. What I do, all I want to do, is write. And I don’t fret too much the other stuff (though I’m sure I should at some point). So it’s been encouraging to read your thoughts on the subject.

    I don’t have a theme, per se, or a particular tagline. I write what’s important to me, in my life, at the time. Right now it’s mothering, and marriage – the challenge is to write from a place of truth that isn’t too raw or too saccharine. And when I feel like I do it justice, it soars. Here’s something I wrote about watching my kids climb trees:
    http://tumbledweeds.wordpress.com/2014/05/09/climbing-trees/

  70. Hi Addie (and everyone!), this is a slight cheat as I wasn’t sure what to link to, and then yesterday wrote something which certainly reflects a little of my life at the moment, if not my blog as well: http://desertmum1.wordpress.com/2014/07/08/why-im-sending-my-kid-to-a-school-in-special-measures/ Happy reading!

    My blog is about ‘pursuing discipleship through the haze of early parenthood’ – how do we not just keep our faith alive, but keep pressing on to take hold of all that God has for us? How do we avoid complacency/pursue discipleship when we’re dog-tired all the time? I don’t promise to answer these Qs…just asking them of myself and raising some issues for thought and discussion.

    Thanks! x

  71. Thank you so much, Addie, for sharing your knowledge and for creating community and opportunity!

    I write a blog called The Me in Motherhood, which is a space where I share stories of my day-to-day life with three kids and trying to make space for myself in the middle of the chaos. I really lost myself when I had kids, and so I’m sharing some of the insights I have as I find myself again. I think motherhood is incredibly tough, and my goal is that people who read my blog will be able to laugh or cry and know that they are not alone.

    I consider myself a story teller, so that’s how I would describe most of my pieces. I would love to write a book someday. I wish I could write more and more frequently… but I have been interrupted four times just writing this comment! Hoping slow and steady can win the blog race for me right now.

    I love this piece that I wrote when my daughter was in the NICU: http://themeinmotherhood.com/2014/04/07/embracing-life-assisted/

    And this is the piece I wrote and shared in the Chicago Listen to Your Mother show this May:
    http://themeinmotherhood.com/2014/07/14/without-further-ado/

    Now off to read your blogs!

  72. Hello Addie! I just found out that you are coming to Imago Dei later this month. I am looking forward to meeting you! I’ve only recently returned to church (2 years ago) after a 25 year hiatus. I’m so inspired (jazzed! actually) by my new-found, mature, nuanced, understanding of spirituality, but conflicted with what it means to be a Christian. Our gracious pastor encourages us to wrestle with our doubts – so I started a blog earlier this summer to lay it all out on the table. It’s been a process. If you want to eavesdrop on my inner dialogue check out suggestions4jesus.wordpress.com . Best to read the about page then start at the early posts and work forward. Thanks for your honesty with your work! Your Future Friend – Susan

  73. Thanks so much for your series. I just started a blog a little over one month ago and have no idea what I am doing. Just a sense that I am supposed to write and share it. 🙂 I think we may have a lot in common, besides living in MN. I know I have a lot of work to do, and it’s still in process. But I am writing about faith and becoming at jlsanborn.wordpress.com.

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