A friend recently drew my attention (via his response to it in his blog) to a post on "Blogging as Spiritual Formation" over at NextReformation. The article by Paul Fromont referred to in that blog post is now over here.
Blogging has bordered on spiritual formation for me at times. It's a way to examine my inner thoughts and formulate them in a way that makes me aware of them, sometimes for the first time. I've had the experience of discovering, as I'm completing a sentence, what I thought about something, or even sensing that something new has been revealed to me in the process (listening to God in prayer). Kind of the way journaling has done for me for years. But blogging forces me to be clearer about articulating my thoughts, as others will read them. I think the reason blogging becomes spiritual formation for some people these days is that it's a substitute for that kind of spiritual dialogue in person with people that humans have thrived on for millennia, as we live more and more isolated and technology-driven lives. But if one is isolated anyway, or separated by miles from friends who know one's spiritual weaknesses and strengths and yearnings best, then I think blogging within an attentive virtual spiritual community is a welcome substitute for small group conversation in a living room. However, I wouldn't want to use blogging as a way to draw any further away from having personal contact with spiritual friends. Sometimes I think it can have that effect. Perhaps more so than journaling at home alone could, because of the feedback which keeps us coming back to the blog. I am glad that I have my flesh and blood small group coming over to my house a week from Sunday. I'm planning to share my story with them, and we're going to have a conversation about technology, and I'll bring up the subject of blogging, among other things.
What do you think, those of you who have spent a good deal of time on blogs, either reading or writing them?
I've been wanting to start a blog on technology and faith but haven't done so yet (and wouldn't be able to drum up enough of a readership very quickly to get much feedback on this soon enough), so I'm posting it here.