I have an ongoing conversation with 2 (sometimes more) blog readers and a fellow minister in the field. The conversation varies a bit in depth and content with each, but I am talking specifically about a conversation in which Jesus vis-à-vis the homeless and the church is the topic. In these few individuals, I get a fair bit of regular feedback (making it a conversation). Of all the others who stop by here to look (whether regularly, once in a while, or just one time), I get very little feedback – beyond a “like”. Sometimes… but usually not much.
One of my blog readers and I speak frequently about whether we are making a difference in the world with our blogs. It FEELS like we have joined a vanity club where we basically “like” each other’s stuff, and where that is about the extent of our “difference” in the world. This is ironic for a blog that purposefully stinks (see this post for more on that https://fatbeggars.wordpress.com/2017/01/17/if-my-blog-stinks/comment-page-1/).
“Like”…. What does it mean?
Probably it means someone likes your post. But that is a bit broad. It almost certainly (though possibly not) means that person actually read your post. There was something favorable about it, but that really could be as little as stroking your ego in hopes that you will come stroke mine. It could mean the post deeply inspired a reader or brought profound conviction. That, however, would suppose a bit more response in the comments or by email, so… it is not all that likely.
So, I wonder…
If you read here, have you found something challenging? Convicting? Inspirational? Encouraging?
I would love to find a homeless person responding saying, “Your blog gives me hope, and makes me feel valued. I bear the image of God, and there is no greater vocation.” – Yeah. I would love that! I would love it if a reader responded saying, “I have read here a bit, and I see where our church could be doing so much more to serve Jesus among the homeless….” – Yeah. I would really love that!!!
But I think if those things were happening, I would get that feedback unsolicited. And after two years without getting such feedback, I am wondering what difference this blog actually makes. It is time, it seems, for such assessment. I don’t write here just to write or collect “likes”. I write here because I was encouraged to get on the grid with my message after years of refusing to get on the grid with it. Those encouraging me to do that seemed very insightful and sure it would make a difference. As far as getting on the grid is concerned, this is as far as I want to go seeking limelight. I do not seek personal notoriety. I seek that proverbial “difference”, and I am wondering if this is the way to go about it.
There are other avenues of service I am actively involved in and pursuing. This is not the only one. And for that matter, I could go back to printing my “Revolutionary Rag” for the streets. I really think I was reaching Lubbock’s homeless by that method with far greater frequency and depth. (Stories on that by request.)
So, I am open to the opinion(s) of others. Does anyone care? I am open to opinions that I might normally resist, but I want to hear them… if they are out there.