Thursday, September 29, 2011

Why I Blog

Why I Blog.
I have answered that question quite a bit lately.
In several different places, to different people and for different reasons, I have explained why I blog.
So, why do I?
I can't help it.
I have wanted to be a writer for as long as I can remember.
Like since my Mom was reading The Little House in the Big Woods to me when I was 6.
I wanted to be like Laura.
The desire has never left me.
It was my major in college.
I thought I'd become an editor and work in the publishing world.
But there were other plans: helping a husband through school, English teacher, Mommy to 4.
Time has passed and I did make it into publishing.
I publish my blog.
Call it what you will, but I am writing almost every day.
I have to.
I want to.
I love to.

When I started this blog, I wanted to tell our family stories.
I tried to scrapbook, but I was always hopelessly behind and that never feels good.
This seemed like a much better solution.
As I began to write, the family stories became something more.
After a while I began to share the things on my heart.
Now I have a whole list of those things.
I am not just telling our family story anymore, but also my own story.

And I admit to having dreams of more.
There are so many things I want to write about.
There are never enough hours in the day.
It's 12:50 am and I am sitting in front of the computer.
I have a 3 month old that will be awake to nurse between 4 and 5.
And then I'll be up by 7 to feed breakfast to the other 3.
And yet, here I sit.
Because writing is that important to me.
I think it must be like artists who have to paint, dancers who can't not dance, a singer who must sing.
It's there and it has to come out.
And so I write and dream of being published "for real".
I am horribly embarrassed to confess that here, but oh well.
I talked once about the first bowel movement after my cesarean section.
Obviously I have no shame.
Maybe I'll get an article in a magazine.
Maybe I'll write a book.
And while that is not the reason I blog, I would be lying if I didn't admit that this blog thing fuels those dreams.
We'll see.

In the end, there are lots of reasons why.
I blog for my family.
I blog for me.
I blog for dreams of what might be.
I blog because I have a need to create and this is the way I do it.
If no one ever read these words, I would still be here writing them.
But having you here makes it that much more fun.
These are the reasons why I blog.

This weekend I attended a blog conference.
Because I love blogging and love to be with people who love it too.

I went last year when it was smaller and in Rachel's (the founder) backyard.
We talked a bit about blogging and then mostly mingled.
It was fun and exciting to meet other people who thought blogging was great.
We passed out cards to one another and networked.
That is kind of what I was expecting this time around.
Except bigger.
With panel speakers on different topics about blogging.
I chose photography and using social media to grow your blog.
Clearly I had an agenda.

What I didn't realize was that God had one too.
And it was really different than mine.

It wasn't that I was in some way opposed to attending a faith based blog conference.
I wasn't.  At all.
I just wasn't thinking about it that way.
And so, you can imagine my surprise when I sat there at the "grow your blog" panel and heard a Bible verse that went straight to my heart.
I caught my breath.
What? Here too?

I have been working on some pretty heavy personal issues lately.
Actually, to be honest, I have been trying not to work on them.
I have been avoiding them like the plague.
As I said in this post, sometimes work is hard and we'd just rather avoid it.
I've been doing a lot of that.
God has spoken to me, again and again.
Again and again I have been trying not to listen.
I know that sounds pretty HOLY ROLLER, doesn't it?
He doesn't call my name, but let me tell you, the words of a song, the prayer of a pastor, some experience in my day, even the things I say to my kids are direct words from God to my heart.
And finally, at the Blog Sugar conference, I decided to listen.

I heard Heather speak and she blessed me further.
And comforted me.
It was just what I needed to hear.
That's not the first time she's done that for me.
I really, really love Heather.

Then I heard Meg speak.
And her words about her experience with blogging got right into where my stuff was.
I was hidden behind a curtain, changing Davy's diaper, and crying.
She was talking about blogging, but I wasn't crying about my blog.
It had nothing to do with blogging.
But God still spoke to me.

"For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart."
Hebrews 4:12

Blog Sugar was a great, great day.
I loved the decorations, the food, meeting on-line friends, and being amongst so much passion and creativity.
It was just what you'd expect from a bunch of amazing bloggers.
It would have been wonderful to walk away from the day with just those things.
But because Rachel had an idea for this conference to be more than that, I walked away with more than that.
I am so grateful.

Love from,

PS If you are a blogger, or want to be, and are interested in Blog Sugar, go to the blog and follow.  You might just find yourself signing up for next year!


Pam... said...

You said it.

And it is all wonderful. And it is also your ministry. You forgot that part; cuz maybe you don't realize it yet.
And it is a sounding board. A place to grow. A way to figure stuff out. A record of one's life. A book of God's grace. A keepsake. It invites relationship, but we may stay home. It makes us smile. It helps us learn. All that in a blog.

katie said...

Thank goodness for your love to spill words from your heart onto to the screen for us to embrace. I cling to your struggles and encouragement as I feel like God is really challenging me to dig deep and face some "stuff" that I've been running from for a long time. Your boldness is always a good challenge for me.
Lots of love, Friend.

Anonymous said...

God is so good, Greta.
Good that He allowed us to meet.
Good that He has used a sinner like myself to organize this.

Good is so many ways.

Keep writing and I'll keep reading.
Love you.

Gretchen said...

When I saw your comment on Sarah Markley's post, I had to click over--because my name is Gretchen. :) Love, love, love this post. It's me, too. Laura Ingalls, writing classes in college, little baby, and all.

Looking forward to reading your blog in the coming days. Thank you for sharing.

And oh yes--one of these years, when I make it to a blog conference, we'll need a Greta/Gretchen picture. Because seriously, there aren't many of us out there, bloggers or no. ;)

JDaniel4's Mom said...

This is such a special post. How wonderful to have God meet you right where you were and used amazing ladies to share with you.

Sarah Markley said...

oh! i love what you said about blogging because you have a need to create. love it.


thank you for your comment, greta.

meg duerksen said...

how totally RAD is God that He always is looking for us.
even to deal with our junk that is completely unrelated to a blog talk but HE DOES IT.
it happens to me too.
and i am constantly overwhelmed by how much HE loves me and wants ME. all of me. even my blog conference!
thanks for your email.

mel @ the larson lingo said...

Oh, I love this entire post. Amen, amen & amen! Thank you for speaking truth here. I can totally relate!

mygirl said...

grets, i love your writing! love, love, love. xoxo, christina

Anonymous said...

Greta, it was so, so lovely to meet you. You have a beautiful smile and a warmth that I adore. Blessings to you!

hannah singer said...

greta! finally meeting you in real life was one of the sweetest moments of my weekend. you radiate grace and beauty. i love your contagious smile and sweet spirit. the lord is good, crossing our paths in this crazy, wonderful blogging world. i need blogging, too. he's drawn me so close through it! and friendships with bloggers? what an unexpected treat. i just adore you! praise jesus! xo

everydayVALENTINE said...

Love this post, beautiful. Wish I had met you at blog sugar. I look forward to keeping up on your blog and getting to know you better. xoxo-*laura*

the Blah Blah Blahger said...

AWESOME AWESOME post! It really spoke to me and allowed me to remember the insights that I picked up that day, too!