Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Three Truths Regarding Blog & Social Media Connectivity


     This has been on my heart lately. I realize even as I write that I may be a contributor to the noise. Nonetheless, I wanted to share this struggle because it too is a part of my homemaking journey.

     When I began my homemaking journey (which also simultaneously became my blogging journey) there were few resources available. Now, just a few years later, there appears to be an abundance of voices contributing to the subject. So much so that at times I walk away from the pages discouraged and unsure as to what my roles are and how I ought to perform them. Am I fulfilling my duties of embracing myself as I am, remaining and growing in Christ, performing my homemaking role, and making my blog and business “successful?” With so many voices on what to be or do it can become confusing, overwhelming and just noise to my own journey.
       Connecting with others who share a common faith, interests, and lifestyle can be comforting, encouraging and joyful. I can, however, become so connected to the lives of others that I unintentionally disconnect from my own. How much time is spent immersed in the world of Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter, Blogs or other online media? If a timer could record each moment that the eyes meet the screens, then the time accrued would be revealing of true priority placement. All that time spent there is less time spent here. Here- the home and family within which I am called to be present. It’s unwise for me to be so fixated on the journey of others that I lose sight of my own.

        Ultimately, I’ve come to see three truths regarding the connectivity provided by blogs, vlogs, and other forms of social media. First, the purpose of blogs, vlogs, and other forms of social media are for inspiration not obligation. The content within these mediums are intended to serve as inspiration. The reader is never intended to feel obligated to agree or abide by any material presented. One should always think critically through and question that which is consumed. Second, true authority and guidance can only come from God. Connecting with other believers is a form of fellowship, but the use of the “follow” phraseology on all of the social media forms can create ambiguity. This is absolute truth: fellowship with friends, and follow Jesus. I have to stop for a moment and consider: “Have I opened blog pages more than I have turned Bible pages?” Even if the blog, status, or tweet is Christian-oriented, my primary source of spiritual encouragement and guidance must come from God and His Word. A message on God’s Word in whatever form cannot substitute the Bible itself. The final truth I have come to understand is that we are all on a journey. If I fixate on that of another, then I miss out on my own. This journey is walked with steady steps. There might be less than desirable lags of the trip. Those moments of struggle are part of the journey and serve the purpose of providing opportunities to learn and grow. 

     I have previously been cautious about sharing the less than put together side of myself or the roles I fulfill in life. Yet, I have grown conflicted about this partial admittance. Have I truthfully conveyed my real homemaking journey? This post is one step in that direction. I’m a blogger and a reader of blogs, and yet have found them to be confusingly encouraging and exhausting. I have tripped numerous times while watching the journey of others’ instead of my own. I have questioned if I really have anything new to contribute or am I simply another voice amongst the others. Am I the obstacle in someone else’s journey that causes her to stumble in realizing and embracing her own walk? Whether blogger or blog reader, I’m there with you.  The three statements mentioned above may not be appropriate for a generalized application, but for me they have spoken truth. 

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  1. Thank you for sharing this. I always love when people share the imperfect side of themselves on their blogs. Honestly, though, I don't think it would serve anyone any better if we only shared our faults and struggles but never our successes or what brings us the best in life. I know I love to see positive blogs. That's something I like about yours. It's important that we always know that all of us are flawed in some way, I don't think you give the impression that you are perfect. But, it's brave of you to look into yourself and examine your own motives. I felt like I really wanted to say something too about your question as to whether you have anything new to say. I, for one, loved what you had to say about homemaking without children and was so encouraged by it.

    1. Thank you, Rachel! Your comment has been very helpful and encouraging to me! I'm so glad to hear that you do get the "real" homemaking experience from the posts. It's important to me to relate the actual practice of homemaking, not just theory. With so much input on homemaking from so many sources now, I've recently gotten stuck in questioning what is homemaking in "my" life and journey. Do I put so much effort into creating it that I neglect simply live it? I always find it beneficial to periodically pause and ask those reflective questions that may realign myself to my purpose. Yes, "Homemaking Without Children" has been a topic dear to my heart and an area I do honestly feel as though I am making a significant contribution. MANY readers comment or contact me to say that that's precisely where they are. I'm glad I can be a voice because I know how few there are for this position. I intend to have a much more expanded writing on this topic in the eBook I've been working on. Thank you again for commenting and encouraging me! I really appreciate it! :)

  2. I agree with Rachel. Your focus has been really encouraging to me as I have not been blessed with children yet. And as you say there are very few with that position. Your menu planning has been especially helpful to me, and focus on homemaking goals that you can work on at this season in your life. I really don't think I could adequately express how much I appreciate your voice on this! Your right, though, it is hard when looking for inspiration to not get sucked in too much and feel overwhelmed. :) Thanks for what you do!

  3. Thanks again for sharing. I think blogs and YouTube videos can really be food for thought sometimes. That's good. Introspection can be a beautiful thing for growth in our lives, as long as we don't question ourselves in a way that makes us doubt ourselves or beat ourselves up. God wants us to grow and become more confident in the strengths that he has given us and use them for the better for ourselves and others. He also sees the little ways we bless others, even if our contributions seem small, they aren't too small for him, so they shouldn't be too small for us. :) You're welcome, I really enjoy your blog.

  4. Now that you mention that, I think I too spend a lot of time searching out the way of homemaking. Sometimes it's scary to actually put it in practice since if I do that I'm alone. But, if I read about homemaking and others' journeys than I feel like I'm not alone in my pursuing homemaking. Example, if I'm cleaning and organizing I'm doing it alone. But, if I'm reading about how to clean and organize from another homemakers view then I'm not alone! But, I agree that there should be a limit there.

    Thank you for your thoughts Whitney! You really have a way of writing that makes things clearer. I really appreciated your post on "Homemaking Without Children".


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