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Why I Blog: Live Deliberately
Tons of blogs vie for your attention. You can find blogs on organizing, cooking, cleaning, parenting, getting close to God, renewing your marriage, and so many more.

So why do you read this one?

Over the weekend I began to think more about why I write, and what the main message is that I'm trying to convey. After all, I don't just want to write so that I entertain you, or so that you all boost my traffic numbers. I want to write to challenge you--and at the same time to challenge myself, because through blogging and writing I often clarify my own goals and thoughts.

What am I trying to do? Let me start by telling you what my primary purpose is NOT. I am not trying to teach you how to clean, or get organized, or parent, or even how to be married. I am not even trying to teach you how to get closer to God (though I hope you do that through this blog). There are so many blogs that specialize in each of these things, and do it better.

What I am trying to do is to spur you on to live deliberately; to challenge what other people have told you you should do with your life. I want to ask those questions that open up our minds to the possibilities that God really does have for our lives, and see how things could be richer, more fulfilling, more meaningful, more intimate.

That's the meaning of the name of the blog: To Love, Honor and Vacuum, which was originally the name of my first book. Sometimes we get into this groove where it feels like most of our lives is a job, an endless assembly line, and we can't get off. But life isn't like that. You always have choices, and those choices can take you closer to God's heart, and thus closer to true joy.

I firmly believe that our culture works directly against that as it seeps into us, even when we don't want it to. And that culture teaches primariliy three things: laziness, selfishness, and dissatisfaction. It teaches laziness because it says the most important thing is to be entertained. We aren't to try hard at anything; we are to find the shortcuts. Get away with the least effort possible! It teaches selfishness because it says that the most important thing is to be happy, rather than to be purposeful. We are to find happiness, and if we don't have happiness, we should dump what we're doing. And it teaches dissatisfaction because it's always showing us how we could be doing a little bit more, trying a little bit harder, and finally achieving success. Except that it's always that little bit more out of reach.

I don't want to teach you how to work harder; frankly, I think most of us are busy enough. I simply want to teach you how to think differently about how we live. Most people, I think, go through this life of being a wife and mommy without giving it real thought. What am I building? Are we growing closer? Does my family love God? Are we spending time in a meaningful way? A lot of us don't have time for these questions because we're so busy trying to get laundry done and chauffeur kids and head to work, because we've bought into the idea that life has to be that chaotic. It doesn't.

Yet we won't see those possibilities unless we stop drifting through life. That, I think, is the modern malady. We are drifting, allowing the stream of our culture to push us where it wants us to go. We are working for more and more stuff. We are sending our kids into more and more activities and not seeing them enough. We are busy so we don't connect with our spouses. We expect our spouses to meet all our needs. We feel dissatisfied, but we can't identify why?

Now please understand; I do not have all of this figured out. That's one of the reasons I write! As I blog, I remind myself what I should be doing, and should be focusing on. But these are things I have thought deeply about. My husband and I had to work to get our marriage strong, because it did not start out that way. We had to fight to stay strong when our son died, and everyone told us that our marriage now faced a crisis. I had to make the decision to give up what would have been a lucrative career because I wanted to watch my kids grow up. And my husband is right now struggling with how much he should work, given that the kids will be out of the house in four short years.

We live in a poisonous culture, and I don't want it to poison me or my family. And so I challenge everything we do. Why am I doing this? Is this necessary? I want to make sure that at the end of my life, I can look back and at least say, for better or for worse, I made choices to do what I did. I'm not blaming anyone else; I deliberately thought about it and prayed about it.

So that's who I am, and that's why I blog. I want to live deliberately, especially in my marriage, in my parenting, and in my home. I hope in these writings that I will both inspire you on towards purpose and meaning, and give myself the occasional kick in the pants, too. I want us all to live for God, not for our culture.

From now on, then, when I write a post, I'm going to ask myself, does this fit? Am I urging people to live deliberately, to stop drifting? And if I am, I'll post it. If I'm not, I may leave it. I want you all to know who I am, so that you know what you'll get when you come here.

So that's me. Now, who are you? Why are you here? What do you like? I'd love to know!

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At 8:42 AM , Blogger Lori Alexander said…

I began my blog to "train the younger women to be sober, love their husbands, love their children, to be chaste, pure, etc.". I wish I had an older woman around like you when I was young. I would have spared my husband and me much heartache. As an older woman, I am commanded to do this so I take this very seriously!


At 10:05 AM , Anonymous Pierre William Trudel said…

Sheila, first of all let me say "thank you" for just being you.
What else can be said?
I follow you because Pierrette & I have decided to be guide's to others. No,we do not want to lead.We have kids and family and a strong healthy relationship(that we too worked very hard on).
July 3 rd will mark our 40 th wedding anniversary and we are proud to be who we are, with God and each other.
Our mission is to point others down the right path.Your blog just came along and fell onto the roadway we use.
Pierre & Pierrette


At 10:06 AM , Blogger The Happy Domestic said…

I blog (albeit not regularly enough!)for three main reasons:

1. To force myself to reflect on priorities and connect with others.

2. To encourage others that we all are far from perfect but we all have purpose and worth.

3. To demonstrate to anyone who will listen that the laws of the Kingdom - God's laws - work for our good if we will live by them.

Thanks for prompting me to think about why I write. I think I ought to write more regularly.


At 12:33 PM , Blogger Mrs.C said…

I love this post. And I love how you are not afraid to tackle the hard subjects and share what you've learned with your readers.

The majority of people I know, do not live "intentional", they just do what the "world" has said they should do without really thinking out the consequences. "Everyone does this, so that's what we'll do."

We need to step outside the man-made box, and pray that God can help us see what His plans are for the family, what He desires for us as we live out our lives here for the short time that we've all been given here.

I really, really like this post.

Keep blogging with real intention!


At 6:05 PM , Blogger Tessa said…

I used to blog to try to show people that there is a gentler way of parenting but now I'm so busy parenting that I don't find time to blog anymore! I don't get to read your blog as often anymore either. But I like the previous comment about forcing ourselves to reflect on our priorities. That's what I hope. that I can stay focused on what's important and put more time and effort into those things.


At 9:08 PM , Anonymous Heather said…

I read your blog because I like the way that you write and the fact that you challenge the way I think about many things. I have shared or forwarded many of your posts because they resonate for one reason or another. In fact, there was one recent week or so that I forwarded about every other post to my husband!

As for my blog, like "The Happy Domestic," I don't write as regularly as I should; but I started because I wanted to be able to share our journey with friends and family who were far away from us. Then it was because people told me I had a gift for writing and that I should do it more often. Now I look at all those who have helped me in my journey as a wife and mother, and I would love to be able to help at least one person with a mistake I've made or success I've had. Like Lori said, we as older women are commanded to teach younger women, so if what I know or have experienced can help someone, I'd love to be able to do it.


At 9:52 PM , Blogger hothoney said…

Thank you for this post. I read your blog because I feel drawn to what you say as if you are speaking directly to me on so many points. God is most assuredly working through you to speak to my heart. I am grateful for your obedience to Him.


At 10:38 PM , Blogger J said…

I blog because God prodded me relentlessly until I succumbed to the realization that maybe I was supposed to go beyond the private conversations about godly sexuality that I have with close girlfriends. I guess He wanted me to be deliberate in my own life and encourage that in others as well. I absolutely love your attitude that we should challenge ourselves. Of course, we don't need to beat ourselves up for mistakes (which we will definitely make), but I think our efforts will be rewarded with better results than those who just let life happen to them. Thanks for blogging! It makes a difference out here.


At 7:45 PM , Anonymous Lois said…

Well, it's working! You do challenge me, and make me think, and yes, that's why I read your blog. And because you take my husband's side in sexual matters, and I know I need a little help in that area! (he likes that I read your blog!)
Keep it up!

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About Me

Name: Sheila

Home: Belleville, Ontario, Canada

About Me: I'm a Christian author of a bunch of books, and a frequent speaker to women's groups and marriage conferences. Best of all, I love homeschooling my daughters, Rebecca and Katie. And I love to knit. Preferably simultaneously.

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