I have been avoiding having a blog since blogs became popular. When was that? Maybe 5 years ago? It couldn’t have been 10…maybe somewhere in between? Basically whenever the now ubiquitous term “blogosphere” became…well….ubiquitous. I seem to have an aversion to “whatever everyone else is doing”—if something is too popular in the mainstream (Harry Potter, Dan Brown novels, etc.) I just don’t want to do it and blogging fell into that category. Everyone seems to have a blog and all of the resources out about how to start a blog or have a “successful” blog seem to require pushing people into a forced niche–“beauty blog,” “food blog,” “pet blog,” “mommy blog” etc. The last of those categories has the most inane sub-niches “blog for moms of kids with food allergies,” “blog for moms who are super pissed about everything,” “blog for moms who are super happy about every single aspect of parenting and want everyone to know about it.” There are religious blogs and art blogs, travel blogs, weight-loss blogs (and of course, religious mom blogs, artsy mom blogs, moms who travel blogs, fat moms blogs , thin moms blogs, and moms who are on the road from fat to thin blogs).
ALL THAT TO SAY….part of my reticence to start a blog (much to the chagrin of the two people who desperately wanted me to start a blog: my husband and a friend at church—Hey Babe and Erica!!) is because I am uncomfortable relegating myself to one particular niche. When I tried, it was comical at best, pathetic at worst. There is a blog called, “Things I want to punch in the face”—just so you know that niche has been covered. There are definite things I want to punch in the face right at this very moment—I’m looking at you, most of Donald Trump’s Cabinet—but for the most part, I land on the side of love…maybe even OVER-love. SO….I thought about having a blog that was simply all about the things that I love—basically the punch in the face blog except opposite. What is the opposite of punching something in the face, you ask? The answer, my friends, I mean, Babe and Erica, is none other than every 14-year-old’s favorite activity…making out. “Thing I want to make out with”—right?? Best imaginary blog ever. However, I love a TON of things and not all of those things would I want to make out with: antique books? Eek, dusty. Baseball? How can you make out with an entire sport? The films of Joe Swanberg? That would be tricky! Am I making out with the film itself or the film on a screen? It is too confusing! Nor would making out with everything and particularly everyone I love be a good idea, even if it is just imaginary nor would it be appropriate for a mostly good Christian girl like myself or the health and wellness of my 15-year marriage. However, the less licentious title options were no good: “Things I want to hug? High five? Shake hands with?” Lame.
I recently graduated from seminary, so I actively considered starting a religious blog. My degree program was a “Masters of Divinity” (MDiv). In a weak and embarrassing moment, I actually considered having a blog called “Mistress of Divinity.” Get it!?!?! I originally thought, a) wouldn’t it be funny? And b) then I could write about all that I’ve learned in seminary. Yikes and I obviously need some sense of humor lessons to “a”, totally boring and awful to “b” –particularly since the overarching theme of what I learned in seminary is exactly how much I DON’T KNOW. So…you are welcome that “www.mistressofdivinity.com” never materialized.
The truth of the matter is, I love my husband and he made me a website for my birthday–in May of 2015!!, so I want to honor (albeit belatedly) his request for me to share my thoughts about God knows what with the universe (or just Erica and him). The secondary truth is, (truth is often PLURAL), I have no idea what this blog will be about. I am mom who loves being a mom but this isn’t a mommy blog. I love food but this isn’t a food blog. I have, on more than one occasion and with no soliciting or prompting, been called “White Oprah” but this is not a blog about my “favorite things” or about being either white or particularly Oprah-like (a designation which I think stems from the fact that my weight has fluctuated over the years, I would give everyone a car if I could, and I really and truly do want everyone to “live their best life!” Seriously!!!).
This is simply a blog about life. Mostly my life, or at least life lived through my perspective, but also OUR LIVES because whether we like it or not, our lives are tied together in this stunningly beautiful but often messy and phenomenally broken world. This will not be a “religious” blog, but it will reflect that I am yes, a seminary graduate (at the ripe age of 38!), and en route to becoming a “pastor,” but more importantly before any of those designations, this blog will reflect that I am a follower of Jesus. That following looks a lot like wondering, asking questions, laughing with those who are laughing, crying with those who are crying and finding both the humor and the grief in this often mind-boggling world of inexplicable love, beauty and utter madness and lunacy. That following is centered around a mysterious yet GOOD God who choose to show up in person in 1st century Palestine and still shows up if only we would stop, look, and listen every once in a while.
This will be a blog where I will write about what breaks my heart but also, about the capacity for God to heal our hearts….through laughter, beauty, community, awe, wonder and the reality that no matter how screwed up this world is, we are not alone. All of those gifts—laughter, beauty, etc.—those make up the light that shines through the cracks, through the few scraggly pieces of a shattered moment to the thousands of pieces of a shattered life. This blog will be about all of it—about the big paradoxical realities of joy and sorrow, life and death, love and hate, big issues like marriage, parenting, vocation, career, but also sometimes about really amazing lipgloss that sparkles, isn’t gloppy, and actually stays on forever (thanks Givenchy Inderdit Ultra-Shiny Lip Gloss) and the best rose around (Chateau Miraval 2013, but 2014 is good too) because ALL of it—adds up to as my FAVORITE writer Frederick Buechner calls it, the “fathomless mystery” of life.