Milestones are artificial measurements meant to give us an appreciation of our journey. In reflection of writing ninety-nine other articles, this one hundredth article is meant to do one thing. Encourage you to write. In this era of digital freedom, people are free to put their ideas out for an astonishingly large audience. Hence I am asking you to begin writing your thoughts, and when you are ready; publish them for the world to see.
As my one hundredth article, I joyfully reflect on my journey. This will be more personal than my upcoming two-year anniversary post. There I intend to focus on what I have learned about websites. Regardless, if you are a pastor, church leader, or member; I encourage you to start writing. Many people at my church write on a regular basis, and I love it. They share what is on their hearts, as well as personal struggles.
As they write, I can see how it is helping their faith as well as their ability to express their thoughts. With anything, writing takes practice. Over time you learn to articulate your thoughts more efficiently and effectively. The ability to put your thoughts into crisp and concise language is helpful in nearly any situation; especially for your professional career. Have I convinced you yet? Here are a few tips for diving into this literary journey:
Although finding time to write is still a challenge for me, what to write is not. Through life's many experiences I am constantly finding myself taking notes. Inspiration comes from so many areas I actually have a difficult time keeping up. You just have to open your eyes to see them. Conversations, experiences, and other writing; take that one thought and expound upon it with your own perspective.
Will you come under attack? My website was hacked, my beliefs challenged, and my works plagiarized. All of these tell me that I am doing the right thing. This tells me that I am advancing the Kingdom of God. The world would not be against me if that were not so. Additionally, it lets me know that the battle is far from over. There are still many church websites that need help, and my quest to be a voice of encouragement has only begun. If you also run into adversity, take comfort in knowing you are probably doing something right.
The most common excuse for not writing is a lack of time. This last sticking point comes down to discipline and sacrifice. For me, it was a matter of giving up a television show or two. The time is usually there, you just need to trim the fat in your life. What may seem worse is that writing appears as another task or chore you need to do. I will admit that I felt that way several Thursday nights when I had no article written. However, over time it will become almost therapeutic. In fact I am greatly anticipating some series I have planned because this is now a creative outlet.
During conversations I ask friends and colleagues to write down their thoughts because they are so insightful and intelligent. Unfortunately many of you worry about blogging because the expectation is that nobody cares what you have to say or you will run out of things to say. I once thought the same. The fact that you are reading this tells me that people do indeed care. If there is passion for the Gospel and advancing God's Kingdom; I fully expect the Spirit to help you and guide you. With that help, you can expect great things to come from your writing. It may be a large following of readers, or it may be one person. Regardless, writing will have a positive impact on both you and others around you.
Take my encouragement to write to heart. Start writing your ideas, even if it is just a title and a few words; it gives you a start. Consider what sort of publishing tempo you wish to have. Is it daily, bi-weekly, weekly, or something longer term? Then when you have a comfortable buffer of articles written, go ahead and begin publishing them. As you publish, continue to pray for help and guidance. After some time you will experience the benefits. These include a better ability to express your thoughts, a growing of your faith, and the humbling experience of being led by the Holy Spirit.
Photo courtesy of Krzysztof Szkurlatowski