Wow. Woot! Yay!
I have blogged here every day for a decade, from very modest beginnings. (See my first post here.) By hitting the next, next, and next button at the bottom of that first post 3,640 times, you’ll get to this post. A lot has happened in between!
My children have become adults with lives of their own in far states, leaving us in a completely different stage of life than when I started this blog, but I am continuing to evolve and progress. I have become more comfortable being out there on the internet, and have gotten better at it. I have an ever increasing readership, and I’m focused more on you, and the flourishing we each can activate, both individually and collectively. I have grown immensely, and am not done with doing so.
God initially prompted this blog, and for years I dragged my feet and resisted doing it. I argued: who would care? Why make busy-work? Furthermore, everyone said you should focus on only one thing: but God kept saying to cover the whole ground. And I thought posting everyday was too much– that I’d run out if material. Finally I relented. I’m so glad I did.
It has become a spiritual practice for me, owning the good here each day. It has also become an archive that we turn to in order to reference all sorts of things. Others tell me they love to plumb the archives too.
The blog started as a sort of living room space beyond geography to share what I would with those who wanted to visit with me– here taste this; have you read this?; what do you think of my new painting/poem?; hey, listen to this stunning spiritual epiphany. This was a place to connect and interact, a place to magnify what was good, and not feel so alone.
The tent stakes of this blog project keep getting bigger and bigger. It’s weird sometimes for people to know me before I know them–but not for long because you blog readers are ALL wonderful– and I just melt with gratitude again that this little thing has brought us together.
My children are greeted by strangers, “I read your mom’s blog,” and are used to that now, especially in the wider church community. But my youngest daughter was shocked when even a fellow college student come up to her and said that!
I’ve actually had a reader say to me that after years of reading my blog, she was noticing the blooming trees in the spring for the first time, and gave the whole credit for that to this blog. I find that amazing. Another reader, loving my Brussels Sprouts recipe, wrote to ask for a book recommendation on spiritual healing. How marvelous! Many of you have felt supported and encouraged to own more of the good in your own days, to stick up for what you need in your lives, to be more creative, to trust your own authenticity, or to turn to God for solutions.
I am heartened by each and every response from you. I find God was right– I craved this wider sense of connection without even knowing it. My work as a spiritual healer and artist is often solitary, and it is very good to share life with a wide variety of fellow thinkers and creative people through this venue. This blog would not have the life it has without each of you, and I am grateful for your readership, whether it is faithful or sporadic. Thank you for your time and responses!
I try to be a transparency for God. This year’s New Year’s resolution is to do that better in all aspects of my life. I try to reflect God’s embracing positivity. It’s not about what I’m doing or thinking, but rather what God is doing in my life. In another way though, this platform has helped me see the good that I am amplifying, to appreciate the creativity and beauty that I’m celebrating. So in an odd way, that process of transparency yields concrete lessons that make me feel more present and less negligible in the world.
I’ve heard the phrase recently of taking “massive imperfect action.” Ten years of writing this blog seems to be a great example of the blessings of just sallying forth without a clue of what you are doing, just listening and doing your best in any given moment, with a spirit of self-forgiveness, and an effort to learn more. So many hesitate to do anything because they don’t know what they are doing, and are afraid of doing it wrong. But one of the best ways to learn is by going ahead and doing it anyway, even if you are as clueless as I was.
As a creative person, this blog, following years of a Box-a-day artist journal (see early years of this blog) project, are the first things where I followed through on a big daily discipline. As a bit of a rebel craving freedom, the regularity of this has been a huge blessing for my character development. Before I did this, I would have doubted I could stick with it. Now blogging daily for me is simply another well-honed commitment, like not eating meet for 38 years, or being faithful in my marriage, or constant in my church attendance. The more I have experienced the blessings of discipline in one aspect of life, that spills over into other aspects as well.
Another fringe benefit of this blog has been that it has helped me avoid becoming a dinosaur regarding computers and technology. It has kept me reasonably up to date with this medium of the younger generation. This motive was one of the original reasons I acquiesced to God’s demand that I do it. And like any motive, it has had its reward. I still have a lot to figure out, like not being terribly search engine optimized in Google, and wanting to figure out a better gallery system for selling original artwork. Both of these are future technological goals for this blog.
And I’m grateful my site looks better and cleaner than other sites. This is because it is reader supported, so that it does not need to have distracting ads in order to support itself. Thank you so much to all those who donate to keep this site up and running and ad-free! And for those new to that donation idea, there is a paypal donation button in the sidebar of every post, should you be moved to join in helping with the expenses, to keep this colossal (and getting ever more so) site afloat.
Many more of you comment directly to me, probably because for most of these ten years, I didn’t have a place to comment on the blog. I do now though, under each and every post, so I encourage you to respond there and not just to me. Others want to benefit as well from what you have to say. There is no reason to be shy of doing so. This community is one you’ve all built by word of mouth. It is ours; not just mine.
Which brings me to thanking you for sharing and utilizing what you’ve liked here. I love hearing how you shared that poem with family members or printed it out for your refrigerator. I’m glad insights are helpful and ring true enough that you post them on Facebook, or you send them to your friend. I love hearing you appreciated a recommendation for a book or movie. It is fun hearing you cooked my food, and that those you made it for loved it. I’m glad you like this blog well enough that you enthusiastically recommend it to other people, urging them to subscribe.
I appreciate that all so much. And for those of you that are new and I don’t yet know, I love hearing how you found this blog! Some of these stories are delightfully obscure and convoluted– truly divine choreography. Also, if any of you want blog cards to share with friends, let me know with your address, and we can make that happen.
So here’s to the next ten! Thank you so much for being along for the ride, for caring, for spending time here, for sharing, supporting, and engaging with this blog. I do everyday, as I seek to “amplify good,” but what is amplification with no one out there to hear? Thank you, thank you, thank you, for making this so worthwhile.
I love you and am so glad to be sharing this journey with you!