An out-of-print Christian biography that would only interest a narrow audience (thus I won’t review it) did have some excerpts I want to share with you as a springboard for my own thoughts.
“True spiritual superiority does not assert itself, but makes itself felt. It does not look for acknowledgement, but is acknowledged because real.” (page 155)
– I agree. If someone is the “real deal” spiritually, you usually just know it. It is not what they say or do necessarily, but their spirituality is who they are and you can feel it. You sense Christ in them. If someone is asserting them self as spiritually mature or advanced, well, that is a sign of the opposite. Like humility, that tricky virtue: proclaiming you are humble is a sure sign you are not humble! We need to focus less on ourselves and more on Christ. While there is a time and place to assess yourself spiritually, don’t get stuck there, as you can’t win a race if you keep stopping to assess yourself. It ends up all about you, and that is the antithesis of Christianity. Look to Jesus and run! Hebrews 12:1-2
Purpose of writing or blogging
“Darby found that writing on scriptural subjects helped him learn. His writings reveal the development of his thoughts; he wrote them down as soon as they crossed his mind and made few changes. He said, ‘In writing I gain knowledge, and the subject becomes more familiar to me.'” (page 173)
– Darby lived in the 1800’s, long before computers, but blogging comes to my mind. Well-known Christian blogger Tim Challies offered recent analysis of blogging. Many Christian blogs have gone silent. Certain blogs can run a natural course, but most blogs did not cease for that reason. I think why someone blogs is critical.
Some jumped on the bandwagon of blogging when it initially became popular and soon lost interest in it. Some approached blogging as a way to make money or build an audience to get a book contract. Hoping for income or a book contract is not wrong in itself, but if it is your primary purpose – the primary underlying motive you have for blogging – then it will not sustain you. I think these things should be a secondary purpose, not primary.
Why are you blogging? I think writing first and foremost for yourself is important. What? Am I contradicting myself? Christianity should not have a self focus!
By writing for yourself, I do not mean in a selfish or self-centered way, but that your desire and purpose for writing comes from within and anchors you – rather than you drifting about, reliant on certain outward results – income, popularity, a book contract. As in the quote from the book…
Writing can help you learn and clarify your beliefs. It can build and strengthen your biblical foundation, and lead to spiritual growth. Even if no one else reads what you write, it can help you. If you share your writings on a blog, there is at least the potential that others will learn from you and you from them. “As iron sharpens iron.”
I saw a blogger share that they were contemplating ending their blog because “it had not amounted to much of anything.” – But what did you expect it to amount to?
My blog Enough Light, after 8 years, has definitely not amounted to much of anything either. My readership is small, and if I get over 100 hits a day in my traffic stats, that is a good day! Yet I keep blogging and I can’t imagine that I will ever stop. Blogging is a helpful outlet for me. I like writing. I’m glad that my Christian content is out there to be found, even if only by people here and there. I hope and pray some of my writing can help others in their life of faith, as it helped me as I wrote it.
Challies recently shared these thoughts on twitter about blogging:
“Some people look at the medium of the blog and ask ‘What can this do for me?’ Other people look at it and ask, ‘How can I use this to serve others?'”
“What would you blog about if you didn’t really care how many people read it? Go blog about that.”
An ever deepening well of Christ
Back to the book I am quoting from… In regards to Darby’s written and oral (speaking) ministry, I was challenged by this and thought it related:
“…What I want is a deeper well of Christ in my own soul to draw from for the blessing of others.” (page 191)
An ever deepening well of Christ in your own soul is imperative for whatever ministry you have as a Christian – writing, blogging, speaking, or otherwise! Don’t neglect Christ. John 15.
Well, this approaches 800 words. I plan another post with further quotes from this book. And what is this book? It is: John Nelson Darby, A Biography by Max Weremchuk, Loizeaux Brothers, 1992.