Thursday, November 09, 2006

The Blogging Christian

I came upon this article which led me to this article (the source for the summary listed in the first article). The subject is "is blogging un-Christian?" The first article (from here on out, #1)seems to find the subject funny or comical, while the second article (#2) was written seriously and, I must add, aimed at teenagers (of course, what do you expect from the remnant of the Worldwide Church of God?).

#2 suggests (even commands?) that its people not blog at all, that people in the church should not blog at all. The problem seems to be that the writer hasn't had good luck with blogs. He has seen young people whose blogs give indications of "the life beneath" - the life they really live when they're out of church. His conclusion is that because such blogs give "the appearance of evil" that the blogs are the problem. How about this, Mr. Genius: maybe there's an appearance of evil because there is evil? Maybe the reason that teenagers flocked to blogs and social networking sites is because they are more and more isolated and because nobody "real" is taking the time to listen to them. Maybe they are crying our for help, for someone to walk through life with them, and the only "voice" they have with which to do so just happens to be a blog?

And another thing (here I'm quoting from #2):

many parents have no idea what weblogs are, or that they exist, or that their children have one. Parents assume their children are innocently spending time on the Internet or doing schoolwork, when they are actually posting to their blogs.Parents have no idea that when they ground their children to their rooms
with their computers they have, in effect, created an environment ripe for
online chatting and blogging. Since these networks are so connected, kids who
are not allowed to go to parties simply create online parties, unbeknownst to
most parents.

This is a main reason blogs are a problem? That's ridiculous. It's attacking the symptom and thinking that you've attacked the problem. Perhaps those parents would be better set to educate themselves on the lives of young people. Or mabye their Christian parental duty is to leave their kids to their own devices while they toil away at meaningless jobs to earn more Mammon (I hope you can read the dripping sarcasm in that sentence). For crying out loud, get to know your kids!

One thing I agree on was that there is a lot of inappropriate content on the internet, and when one links to another site, it's an implicit acceptance of what's on that site. I had linked to the Onion, a satirical newspaper I find quite funny, but there's inappropriate content on their site (and even more inappropriate links from their site) -- this is the exact reason I un-linked. Likewise with the "next blog" feature; I had no control over where that would take a reader. Thus I disabled it (and if I can figure out how to disable it in the beta version of this blog, I might someday upgrade).

This, however, breaks down as a problem with blogs - I could use the same logic to conclude that roads are evil - there are roads that lead to liquor stores, gambling establishments, "adult" bookstores, and dance halls ;-) and many other roads might connect with those in question. The only way to avoid the evil roads is to stay off all of them. Better yet, barricade yourself in your house without any contact with the "evil" outside world. No television, radio, internet, cars, etc.

No, the problem with blogs isn't a problem with blogs at all. The way I see it, the problem with blogs is that we often don't have the time or the friends with whom we can share deeply, and we're such a mobile society that it's hard to stay close enough to maintain those key friendships. The Church can - and should - step in to this gap and offer relationships - with Christians as well as with Christ Himself, the only completely fulfilling relationship available.


muzik316 said...

I agree dude. I have not had a deep relationship since high school, except for my friend Bill who now lives 8 hours away and I see once, maybe twice a year. I think people are more open to talking on their blogs becuase most of the time no one is listening and that most of their readers could walk the same streets and never know who they are.

Katie said...

My blog is a way to keep conmtact with people I don;t see on a regular basis. My friend in OK, WI and CA read it. Cause sometimes our lives are busy (they have kids, I don't) and we don't all live in the same time zone!!!

Sigh, just another way that Christians with too much time on their hands are trying to be more like the Pharisees than how jesus wanted us to truly be.

Chuckinator said...

As I read this post I thought of the "The Core" seminar we attended together. One of the core values that they pushed was for us to immerse ourselves into the youth's world. By immersing ourselves in their world, we give them the opprotunity to "swim" up to us and learn from us.

Those that only see "evil" from this medium are missing the chance to immerse themselves in the current youth culture. Therefore, they are missing a ripe chance to make a difference in someone's life. Remember, God uses seemingly "evil" events to do his work all the time.

Anonymous said...

Yes, you are absolutely right. It is the same situation, just another version: it's a deep-seated problem of the human heart. Heart problems (lack of Jesus) are the cause of very many of those kinds of things!

My blog is intended to be for the purpose of showing God's love to a hurting and desperate world. And I believe yours is, too.