April 26, 2010

Twenty-Two, with announcements

The days of shift work are coming to an end in our home. I wonder how I'll adjust to having the man of the house in residence every evening. After 15 years, I've grown to like the pockets of alone time that shift work has afforded me. Selfish, I know.

As I count down the days, I've been thinking a lot about time and my use of it. I've realized that I don't make the best use of the time the Lord has blessed me with. Particularly when it comes to blogging.  What started as a hobby nearly four years ago has sucked up more of my life than I ever intended. Some serious changes are in order.

Checking in several times a day to moderate comments is not the best use of my time. I appreciate your encouragement. Really, I do. But comments have fed my need for validation, and it's grown into something pretty ugly. If someone hasn't commented in a while, I wonder if I've offended. If I pour my heart out and no one comments, I wonder why I even bother to write. When a new reader comments, I feel obligated to visit her blog, which takes even more time. Beginning with this post, comments will be turned off. Please hear my heart on this. I pray that your visit to my blog is the best use of your time, and I don't want anyone to feel obligated to comment. I pray my words inspire, encourage, inform, and perhaps even minister. If they do, it is because of God. It is not because of me. My email address is in my profile if you have a question or want to share something with me. I would love to hear from you.

Although I still think it's a great idea, I will no longer host The Week in Words. The obligation to leave a comment on each link (and the guilt when I don't) is too much. If someone else wants to host it, please feel free...and make sure you let me know so I can participate.

Throughout the past four years I've had dreams of a big ministry, lots of comments and followers. My plans, my pride. I have finally, FINALLY come to a place where I accept that it's not about me. A public display of those following this blog nurtures my already-healthy ego. I'm disabling the "follow" option. If I could keep it and not display that badge, I would. (If there's a way, please tell me how). There are still subscription options in the sidebar.

Blogging has taught me much in these past four years. I've been encouraged to rightly divide the Word of God, be more frugal, be a better woman, look for God in even the smallest details of my life, and help others. I've discovered great recipes and even greater books. I hope to continue to grow and learn, while using my time more wisely. I've whittled down the number of blogs I subscribe to. I will comment ONLY when I have something worth saying.  Not commenting will in NO WAY be a reflection of the truth, importance or beauty of a post, but rather of my inability to add anything of value to the conversation.

These changes have been on my mind for a while, but I wasn't motivated to implement them. My Facebook break has taught me that I don't need so much information in my life. I need balance. I've made some true friends through blogging, relationships I hope to maintain this side of Heaven. I also have a wonderful family, church family, friends and fantastic group of teenage girls who deserve more than I give them.

These changes are not about choosing better, they're about choosing best.

Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is.  ~Ephesians 5:16-17 (ESV)