Monday, March 21, 2011

more thinking about blogging

One of my favorite blogs, Cheryl's My Simple Spot, is closing down.   Cheryl wrote lucidly and honestly about her journey towards simplicity.  But I guess her blogging had  taken her past blogging.   Perhaps God intended it to inspire and help herself and other on a journey and now that time is over.   She writes:

This fall I realized that I want more than simple living or minimalism, I want to give my life to doing God's will....And then I still struggled with feeling God's presence in my home. I was distracted, too busy, not making time for Him.  ...... So for today, I am sure of my priorities. There are many good things in this world and I cannot do them all. So blogging has to go.
This made me think.

Blogging is a good thing in itself, but it's hardly a necessity in anyone's life.  For some people it is tied into their job in one way or another.  For me, it's a way to reflect and communicate.

In that way, it can help me with the "duties of my state in life"  --- but it's not at the core of what I do, in itself.

When something isn't per se necessary, but is helpful, it is good to re-evaluate occasionally.  Just as I might go through my clothes or kitchen utensils periodically, with an eye to what is still useful vs what could be given away -- I can do the same with my non-essential activities.

I wonder if this is the essential part of simplicity.   I keep thinking about what is REALLY necessary (with a soundtrack of Hold on Loosely).    There is sort of a pyramid.  God is the "one needful thing."  Then there are "duties" -- what God has assigned you by nature of your vocation -- which essentially relates to parenthood and fruitfulness, whether conjugal, as in the case of married folks, or spiritual, in the case of those called to celibate religious vocations.  

In Familiaris Consortio, Pope John Paul II goes into detail about how a family, by itself, is not a complete unit.  It is meant to give and receive -- to affect the broader society and be supported by it.

I suppose blogging is one way of entering into this broader part of outreach and communion with the larger society of other Christians and the world in general.   If it fits anywhere besides as personal journaling, this is where it fits.

Still, seasons change and what is good and useful for one season may not be so for another.

I'm not leading up to saying I'm quitting blogging.   Basically, I'm just thinking.     What I say here about blogging would of course apply to everything in my life that is not strictly needful.  

A sort of checklist -- I doubt if it's complete but here are some things I am thinking about:
  1. Is the activity (blogging or whatever) helping my vocation or distracting me from it?
  2. Is it in its proper place in my life?  If not, can I shift things so it is?  
  3. Could I give it up if called to?  
  4. Am I willing to hand it to God or am I trying to keep the activity for myself?
This would apply to possessions, too, it seems.... or habits that may once have served a useful purpose but don't anymore.

1 comment:

  1. Willa, I appreciate your thoughts on this subject. I wonder myself about the value of blogging...I have certainly struggled with trying to find a purpose for online activity. On the one hand, it is a wonderful creative/intellectual pursuit, but on the other, does it distract from prayer or important interaction with the real people in our lives? I guess I have concluded that 1)I do need a focused intellectual pursuit for my own happiness, and 2) that it is good to not to hide our "talents", but that we ought to use them in a public way for the edification and encouragement of others. Thank you for sharing your thoughts; your musings encourage and inspire me!


I would love to hear your thoughts on this!