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!
Labels: blogging, purpose, To Love Honor and Vacuum