Home > Uncategorized > It’s FRIDAY – what is this blog about?

It’s FRIDAY – what is this blog about?

I’ve revised this article, and updated it accordingly…sometimes the final draft isn’t good and clear enough….

Blog.

The word does sounds kinda unusual, doesn’t it?

It’s short for weblog, and there are tens of thousands of them online, talking about every imaginable subject.

Some dismiss blogs as pointless, incessant barking, and some blogs are exactly that πŸ™‚

Some blogs are good, and helpful, and provide a service to their readers…and that is what motivates me here.

Taking on a project like this – a blog – comes with some responsibilities: writing and posting articles daily, interacting with the people who are kind enough to comment on what they read.

It is my blog – but if it’s all about me, then I may as well shut it down.

BrianD blog is where part of the community from the Phoenix Preacher blog I was part of has journeyed online. Some may think that perhaps I would pick up where its founder, Michael Newnham, left off.

However, my calling and gifts are wholly different from his, so I will leave Michael’s calling to him or whomever God would desire to carry it forward.

Nevertheless, there are two things about PP that stand out to me:

  • Michael served others by talking about issues of interest to his audience, sometimes using his own life as an example
  • He sought to represent Jesus and serve Him well.

This blog hopefully will include these core elements going forward:

  • God-oriented, and others-oriented
  • What God is doing in my life, and yours, and in the world we live in
  • Things that I may find to be especially helpful, or interesting, to you.

I may talk about myself once in a while…but I don’t want this blog’s voice to be incessant barking. There’s enough of that online as is.

I want this blog’s voice to spark conversation.

I want to follow in the footsteps of such Christian bloggers as Bill Kinnon, Dan Edelen, Michael Spencer and the guys who are continuing his legacy at Internet Monk and the Boars’ Head Tavern, and Michael Newnham.

And I want to be a voice for hurting Christians, Christians who have fallen through the cracks in the church floor, and Christians who feel alienated from the world or the church.

I’ve been all of those things…and there are very few voices speaking out for those wounded sheep.

There are plenty of Calvinist blogs, young restless and Reformed blogs, blogs extolling the glories of church planting and service. I don’t have much to contribute to those conversations.

But it’s a big church, with a large variety of denominations and perspectives under the Protestant banner, and I’d like to explore that quite a bit.

I also want to thank the audience who has followed me over here from Phoenix Preacher, and from other places on the web…and help that audience and grow it, if God permits.

There are a few other reasons why I want to keep going here for awhile:

  • I didn’t want the PP community to die off…and while Michael needed to shut down his blog, I couldn’t stand to let the community disappear into the vapors…
  • Right now, I NEED that community desperately, especially since circumstances are keeping me from building community in my local church which I don’t see changing anytime soon.
  • I really like to write…and I dare to believe that perhaps I might have something to say to the world from my little corner of the web.

We’ll see where this goes. I hope it has a long shelf life.

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Categories: Uncategorized
  1. BrianD
    June 25, 2010 at 11:03 am

    This was a hard article for me to write, in that it was surprising to me how difficult it was to convey exactly what I was thinking…that being because perhaps I haven’t yet fully fleshed out what I want this to be.

    I know a few things in addition to what I said in the main article.

    1. I didn’t want the PP community to die

    2. Right now, I NEED that community desperately, especially since circumstances are keeping me from building community in my local church

    3. I really like to write…and I dare to believe that perhaps I might have something to say to the world from my little corner of the web.

  2. erunner
    June 25, 2010 at 11:27 am

    I wish you nothing but the best Brian. Once you flesh things out and your vision is complete stay true to it. You are a gifted communicator and have a heart for people. That will show more and more as time goes on. I look forward to visiting often.

  3. nancy
    June 25, 2010 at 11:45 am

    I agree with E … wishing good things for you & BrianD blog …

  4. jlo
    June 25, 2010 at 11:50 am

    looking forward to being part of the community that gathers here.

  5. immrsw
    June 25, 2010 at 12:52 pm

    the Phoenix Preacher thrived because of the controversy and stayed the course because of the firm and fair hand at the helm… that and the overall atmosphere of humility before Truth; not always agreed upon, but respected and debated… “don’t tell me what to believe, tell me what you believe”

    Honest pastors gave guidance and were given their due respect even when there was disagreement and ODMs were welcomed, but not bowed to… which usually sent them off in a huff – the community that developed was the result of this IMO – the PP was Christ’s work on souls – it was a good, probing and healing thing, but it did seem to have run its course… and it cost one man (perhaps, Michael has a book to write).

    i think – dunno – that people visit blogs to: pontificate or agitate, or be entertained… sadly the education, healing and the edifying are by-products for most of us who are not academicians…

    Briand, you and the others who were his back-up paid a price, too. And you make me feel like i’m abandoning something now πŸ˜• … but know i am praying for you all

  6. immrsw
    June 25, 2010 at 12:54 pm

    hmmm… don’t know why the label immrsw? Em

  7. Buster
    June 25, 2010 at 12:56 pm

    BrianD,
    This is a good example of the value of writing out vision statements, goals, business plans, etc. The process of writing it forces us to crystallize those nebulous ideas that are floating around in our heads. We might even thing we have a good plan in our heads, but then we try to write it down and discover there’s not so much there! If we continue the process, a solid plan will begin to emerge, and we can continue to refine it over time. Then it can become a plan that we can follow, and guideposts that we can refer to, instead of us just meandering about and not accomplishing anything, because the plan was never firm to begin with. Good work!

  8. Buster
    June 25, 2010 at 1:20 pm

    Just noticed this on iGoogle’s “Quotes of the Day:”

    Why do writers write? Because it isn’t there.
    – Thomas Berger

  9. madison*bella
    June 25, 2010 at 1:22 pm

    What’s wrong at your church that you can’t find community there? That’s very sad. But it happens….

  10. madison*bella
    June 25, 2010 at 1:28 pm

    What is the working definition of “community” in terms of the church?

  11. BrianD
    June 25, 2010 at 1:35 pm

    Hi everyone,

    Thanks for the kind words!

    Em, this is different from the PP, you are correct about blogs in general but hopefully this will be different in a good way.

    Madison, it is not the church. It is life that is keeping me from connections and community and without telling the public all of my business, I am working on the issue.

    But my church and most of the people in it, along with all the other churches in America, is on a 9 to 5 schedule…

  12. BrianD
    June 25, 2010 at 1:37 pm

    “What is the working definition of β€œcommunity” in terms of the church?”

    Mars Hill Seattle, without the screaming man’s man Calvinist preacher πŸ™‚

  13. June 25, 2010 at 2:23 pm

    Brian, you gots a way with words that makes em sound all perty…and a big heart. Your gonna do grand

  14. Buster
    June 25, 2010 at 2:31 pm

    Here’s one:
    “And they devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers…. And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts, praising God and having favor with all the people. (Acts 2:42,6,7)”

    Last night ten of us met in the back yard of one of the couples in the group. We cooked hot dogs and smores over an open fire, and they all got a laugh from my home invasion story. We prayed together in the yard. It was a really nice time. I’m glad that God led me to this group.

  15. Em
    June 25, 2010 at 4:24 pm

    hmmm, i sure didn’t mean to imply that you won’t have a great blog-site or that it should be an imitation/continuation of PP, Brian…

    you’ve proven yourself – the old Ashes with Erunner’s porch and Dusty’s beautiful make-believe house and the dogs playing poker on the porch wall was down to earth, uniquely imaginative and memorable (obviously)

    God keep, Em aka Psalmy and now immrsw(?)

  16. Captain Kevin
    June 25, 2010 at 5:24 pm

    immrspsalmyemw…LOL!

  17. BrianD
    June 25, 2010 at 5:32 pm

    No problem, Em.

    I miss ERunner’s porch…and who came up with the dogs playing poker on the porch wall?

  18. BrianD
    June 25, 2010 at 5:33 pm

    Buster, I’m glad you got a group to connect with.

    Everyone, thank you for your kind words.

  19. Em
    June 25, 2010 at 5:33 pm

    CK, me, too πŸ˜† … pondering the deeper meaning … must be one … πŸ™„

  20. Em
    June 25, 2010 at 5:35 pm

    Brian, dunno – but i suspect Erunner and i miss MaryB, too – you should take a bow BTW, you held the mood and the group together

  21. BrianD
    June 25, 2010 at 5:38 pm

    thanks, Em. As far as holding the group together…the group itself should take a bow, for those people were as willing to hang in there as you and I were.

    Everyone – I’m busy for the next several hours – but will monitor and talk as I am able.

  22. erunner
    June 25, 2010 at 5:52 pm

    Erunner’s porch!! Those were fun days. I believe I came up with the dogs playing poker and Dusty hung it up for me. Seems so long ago….

  23. Nene
    June 25, 2010 at 5:59 pm

    Wow, that porch does seem like a long time ago. Bring back the porch, and the dogs! See you guys later…hi Em!

  24. Na'amah
    June 25, 2010 at 6:04 pm

    πŸ™‚ i’m looking forward to hanging here in this community as it develops.

    BrianD to me you ‘feel’ like a person w an open heart to the spirit and to fellow peeps. I am very grateful that all us from the former PP community have a place to continue to commune.

    πŸ™‚ hi immrsempsalmy now em again

  25. madison*bella
    June 25, 2010 at 6:35 pm

    I am so lost … Is Em psalmy?

    Thanks for the description Buster. πŸ™‚

    Brian, I echo your thoughts about life making one too busy to really ‘connect’ at church. More like, rush in, go to Sunday School, go to Mass, take the Eucharist, rush out. Then do it all again next week. There’s a Women’s Bible Study I’d like to attend but it meets after work and I have to race home to make dinner for my family, so that won’t work. It’s too bad too because it looks like a great study. Life is too hurried. For this reason and many others (job commitments etc)–it isn’t possible to have community in church.

  26. Em
    June 25, 2010 at 6:46 pm

    MB, i am a person without a persona πŸ˜† and each of those names kind of lit off of the one before it … or something … i originally signed in as ‘passing by,’ but someone else had staked a claim and, sigh, i’ve never known who i was since … πŸ˜†

    and now i’m trying to disengage and i’m stuck in the doorway explaining myself and reminiscing … but here’s a vote to go with nene’s … that was such a pretty house and such a nice long porch with room for all to set a spell and talk about things of the Lord… virtual community?

  27. BrianD
    June 25, 2010 at 7:11 pm

    We can build two porches – one here, one at ERunner’s blog!

    Na’amah, thank you for your kind words.

    Madison…my experience is not quite what you describe. And community has also been a challenge for me to build there.

    Not now, but sometime I may talk about my experiences more in detail.

  28. erunner
    June 25, 2010 at 7:55 pm

    Brian, I won’t be doing the porch on my blog although I toyed with the idea. Maybe you could do something along those lines if you’re so inclined!

  29. Na'amah
    June 25, 2010 at 7:56 pm

    em.. reminds me of when my grandmother would be saying goodbye to one of my aunts as we were going to the grocery store…my other aunt waiting for her to get into the car would be so exasperated…”Mama were only going to the store! It’s not like you’re going to be gone longer than a couple hours” πŸ˜€ i sure do miss these women.. and…i hope you don’t stay away

  30. BrianD
    June 25, 2010 at 7:59 pm

    “Brian, I won’t be doing the porch on my blog although I toyed with the idea. Maybe you could do something along those lines if you’re so inclined!”

    What would that look like here, though, ER? An open thread?

  31. erunner
    June 25, 2010 at 8:29 pm

    If you did something like that maybe do it like we did on FTA. I think Dusty had it set up as a page off to the side and folks just clicked to get on. That way it wouldn’t be like a regular post that would eventually get buried. Maybe call it Brian’s brewery! πŸ™‚

  32. BrianD
  33. BrianD
    June 25, 2010 at 8:48 pm

    ER, if we do this, then we can tie it to Acts29 and have theological discussions πŸ™‚

    http://www.joethorn.net/2009/05/06/theology-pub-tonight/

    But we’ll have to deal with people who think going into a bar is sin 😯

    http://www.bpnews.net/BPFirstPerson.asp?ID=25221

  34. BrianD
  35. DeadManWalking
    June 25, 2010 at 9:09 pm

    Been a long time since what day of the week it is meant anything to me. I see what God had to say about work 6 and rest 1 — if our lives are not punctuated by work and rest life looses a lot of it’s meaning, and when everyday is exactly as the day before you have nothing to talk about. So a word of advice Thank God when it’s Monday. And Never retire.

    Deadman is still around but more dead than ever

  36. Na'amah
    June 25, 2010 at 9:10 pm

    BrianD… uh there have been a few bars i’ve entered that it did feel like sin inside… some of the places my cousin i stopped in when we were touring on our Harley’s goodness gracious! but then i seem to recall a Presb church that had a basement “club” excellent grill and bar w outstanding music and conversation

  37. erunner
    June 25, 2010 at 9:18 pm

    I feel something coming together Brian! :mrgreen:

  38. BrianD
    June 25, 2010 at 9:32 pm

    Na’amah, perhaps we can do the club πŸ™‚

    Brian’s Club?

  39. BrianD
    June 25, 2010 at 9:39 pm

    DMW!

    I was about to ask how you were doing…but did you just tell us?

    I remember what you said about community over at FTA a few years ago…and it brought to mind this quote I saw over at the Boars Head Tavern several days ago

    β€œLove community and you will kill it. Love your brother and you will build it.”

    – Dietrich Bonhoeffer

  40. BrianD
    June 25, 2010 at 9:48 pm
  41. London
    June 25, 2010 at 9:48 pm

    It’s interesting that the converstion is back to community again.

    I love the group I hang out with for church, but it’s online so I miss out on 95% of what’s happening there. Sometimes that’s ok, but sometimes, it’s very frustrating.

    We’re “meeting” tonight and lately there’s been some technical issues which mean I can’t always get “heard” so i thought I’d post a prayer request on line at the website.

    I wrote it all out and then hesitated because I realized that I don’t want to be percieved as being “wimpy” or not spiritual enough because I’m struggling with trusting God in the whole employment thing. It’s odd to be that I would have ZERO trouble writing that here or on PP before, with people I’ve never met, but worry about being honest with people I have met and who I know love me.
    I’m not sure if that says something about me, you, them or what…but it’s odd to feel “safer” in a group of relative strangers than in a group of people you’re supposed to be able to think of as family.

  42. Na'amah
    June 25, 2010 at 9:51 pm

    or BD’s πŸ˜‰

  43. BrianD
    June 25, 2010 at 9:53 pm

    London,

    You should be able to trust those people. You’ve known them for awhile, and they’ve known you…sometimes we are so concerned about something we assume others will judge us when they actually won’t.

  44. BrianD
    June 25, 2010 at 9:55 pm

    I am a man, and not much of a decorator, so I would need some help if I start this club (not bar).

    I do admit I am tempted to hire Eric, Buster, Kevin and Gren as the contractors πŸ™‚

  45. BrianD
    June 25, 2010 at 9:56 pm

    Na’amah :

    or BD’s ;)

    BD’s could be anything, though…

  46. BrianD
    June 25, 2010 at 9:58 pm

  47. BrianD
    June 25, 2010 at 9:58 pm

    or

  48. BrianD
    June 25, 2010 at 9:58 pm

    or,

  49. London
    June 25, 2010 at 10:02 pm

    Brennan Manning always said this great thing.

    “Thou Shalt not should on yourself”

    I think I’ll just take his advice.

    Sorry to interpret the decorating planning session.

    Carry on.

  50. BrianD
    June 25, 2010 at 10:04 pm

    London, huh?

  51. BrianD
  52. June 25, 2010 at 10:25 pm

    London, I heard you….still praying for employment for you.

  53. June 25, 2010 at 10:29 pm

    DMW, what makes you more dead than ever tonight?

  54. BrianD
    June 25, 2010 at 10:35 pm

    Hi, Dusty.

    I have no idea what just happened here…

  55. June 25, 2010 at 10:38 pm

    Hi Big Guy. Just got here….London would like prayer for employment. DMW seems down tonight…

  56. BrianD
    June 25, 2010 at 10:43 pm

    I know that, Dusty…was goofing off, thought London misunderstood me, and here we are.

  57. London
    June 25, 2010 at 10:48 pm

    Thanks Dusty.
    It was more about how weird it is to feel like I couldn’t type out what was going on in a place where “community” is supposed to happen.
    But yeah, a job would be good!!

    This is how weird my life is lately. Today I actually called about a project manager job at a mission agency. 😯 In reality, I’d love to do that kind of thing, but pretty sure I’d fail all the pre-employment theology check list tests they make you fill out.

    Pretty sure if you write “i have no idea” or “who the heck knows” on the questionarie, they would probably frown on that.

  58. London
    June 25, 2010 at 10:51 pm

    Brian- look at your post.
    You told me “you should be able to trust them”….well, that is just what I said the problem was.

    The Brennan quote is something he used to say around us all the time (others too I assume) and it always makes me laugh when someone says “you should”

  59. BrianD
    June 25, 2010 at 11:02 pm

    London, I meant both in general, and specifically in your situation. Going only by what you had typed, I wanted to be an encouragement to you.

    Community itself can be awkward…sometimes you can yearn for whatever community is supposed to be, but when it comes time to speak up and take a risk – and talking honestly is a risk, if only (usually) to a small degree – you freeze up and say something you think people will be more understanding of, or sounds more spiritual.

  60. BrianD
    June 25, 2010 at 11:11 pm

    “Books that Changed My Life”

    Messy Spirituality by Mike Yaconelli – for years I had been hammered with do-it-yourself, pull yourself up by your bootstraps and earn your salvation by the minute spirituality. Yaconelli was perhaps the first author to openly admit being flawed, messed up, broken and that it was okay for a Christ-follower to be…well…human. That God’s love for you and acceptance of you wasn’t dependent on your perfect actions or your perfect desires, and that you didn’t have to have it all together to be accepted. Looking back on it it’s like The Shack…probably not the best-written book, but has one central idea that is so amazing that, if you get it, it stands out like nothing else.

  61. BrianD
    June 25, 2010 at 11:18 pm

    carry on, everyone.

  62. Na'amah
    June 25, 2010 at 11:43 pm

    lol… that was an amusing ‘processing’ above you know BrianD women often have 3-5 conversation threads going on between them at one time…so London’s introjection is a completely natural addition to our club decor and plans..

    and i was thinking BD’s Club πŸ™‚ [o O] fka ( | o )====::: could design an absolutely original and cool neon sign indicating a place for music and discussion and the others can provide the different area

    really this club was extremely cool… jazz playing 2 tonights i was present (my cousin is not a believer…well nothing structured) i do not recall where we found it…near SF i think.

    #59 London said, “…say something you think people will be more understanding of, or sounds more spiritual.” i struggle w this A LOT and i think it is because all of us have had our own words used against us… betrayed by someone w thought we could trust. The difficulty for me is i know how i behave, speak does have influence… i do not speak the same way w my psychotherapy clients as i do w my colleagues…not completely different but the relationship is different. Why i support confidential venues for people of the same profession to just “be”.

    London by the words you have written you are very thoughtful, resilient (not all are)and willing to hear a different POV. And you expect that others have the same resilience as you do… for me, one of the attraction of the PP community and now Brian’s, is that i sense that all the myriad of facets that make me who i am now will be accepted, perhaps challenged but i will not become a stumbling block to anyone here.

  63. BrianD
    June 25, 2010 at 11:50 pm

    Na’amah…I guess I’m clueless…or am busy right now and tired – and clueless πŸ˜‰

    One of the drawbacks of this type of forum is that misunderstandings do happen…but they also happen in any forum human beings are involved in.

    BD’s Club would work just fine.

  64. Na'amah
    June 25, 2010 at 11:57 pm

    no BrianD you are certainly NOT clueless πŸ˜† um…you’re sort of wired male

  65. BrianD
    June 25, 2010 at 11:59 pm

    I am male…and as to whether being wired male equals clueless or otherwise…I’ll leave it for the women to decide πŸ™‚

  66. Buster
    June 26, 2010 at 12:04 am

    DMW!
    Dusty and I would love to make that home-cooked dinner of yours a regular thing, if we lived closer!

    You should grab some kid off the street and make him a disciple. Seriously. I’m going to start praying for that.

  67. Na'amah
    June 26, 2010 at 12:25 am

    DMW hi, we do not know one another, i hope to have the opp to alter this… i came late to the party at PP… but i do recall one of PP’s long time members, Centorian, included you on his imagined/longed for extended ride on his FatBoy…

    i may not understand as well as you to be thankful for Mondays, but i have been disabled since 1/2/10 and not able to return to my govt. office πŸ™‚ i do comprehend how much being able to have “work” in our schedule is very important to our health.

  68. BrianD
    June 26, 2010 at 12:44 am

    Na’amah, Buster, everyone…my brain is fried and I am wiped out. So party without me. See you Saturday

  69. London
    June 26, 2010 at 1:31 am

    You can’t call it BD’s club cause that sounds too much like The Church of Dread to me and I’ll get confused πŸ™‚

  70. London
    June 26, 2010 at 1:45 am

    Brian, it was just the use of the words “you should….”. I guess a long time ago, mostly from having Brennan say that quote, I learned not to tell people what they “should” do (unless they work for me or we’re fighting) πŸ™‚

    I felt like I was sharing something a bit vunerable and about this community and then you said how I “should” feel which was completely opposite of what I was feeling. So, instead of being encouraging which I know was your intent, at the moment when I read it, I heard more “you ought to be able to trust them now…” and that just add consternation I was feeling about not being able trust them.

    I use the Brennan quote in my own head whenever I start beratting myself for not doing something right or not doing it the right way etc…It’s sort of automatic whenever I hear someone say “you should….” or “you need to…..” that quote pops in my head to remind me that I don’t need to guilt myself over how I am feeling at the moment. Whatever I happen to be feeling at the moment is fine and I don’t have to “should on myself” about it.

    Hope that helps clear up some of the confusion.

    Not mad…just explaining

  71. Sue
    June 26, 2010 at 11:58 am

    DMW – never retire? I know some now retired who are enjoying every day – so happy to be able to do things they didn’t have time for before. Like surfing every day, reading, playing music, doing art, etc. Maybe you could add some hobbies to your life style – try something new – spark some passion for something that interests you – was reading how Grace Slick paints pictures of 60’s icons – and she’s 70 now I think it said – any interests you never pursued but wanted to? Maybe change from dead to thrive – just thinking —

  72. Em
    June 26, 2010 at 12:30 pm

    Sue, DMW has full time care of his wife who is very, very ill and it has been a very long road… he has served faithfully, but gets worn down under the load, keep him in your prayers…

  73. Em
    June 26, 2010 at 12:32 pm

    what i stopped by for was to drop off this verse – it is for anyone who loves pelicans and is having attitude problems re’ BP (like me)

    Rev 11:18 The nations were angry, and Your wrath has come, And the time of the dead, that they should be judged, ….., And should destroy those who destroy the earth.

  74. BrianD
    June 26, 2010 at 12:43 pm

    Hi Sue,

    Em is right…DMW has his hands full taking care of Mrs. DMW…but you never know!

    Em, re: BP it’s all in God’s hands…I have to believe that, especially since the entire situation is revolting…

  75. Em
    June 26, 2010 at 12:57 pm

    Brian, revolting, yes … and, yet that company continues with an attitude of “don’t get excited; accidents happen and we are soo much bigger that this one unfortunate event…”
    how do you get to be so big and so important that you never feel shame?

    not trying to start something here … it’s all been said – but that verse (found in my scheduled Saturday read) was very comforting

  76. BrianD
    June 26, 2010 at 1:18 pm

    “how do you get to be so big and so important that you never feel shame?”

    Sin.

    Which all humans, apart from Christ, will be judged for.

  77. BrianD
  78. Sue
    June 28, 2010 at 12:45 am

    EM – I’m aware of DMW and his wife – very tough situation – and he has my RESPECT for his honorable care for her. My comment was in responce to his comments about work and retirement – my thoughts were along that line. Caregivers find it difficult to do things for themselves to take care of themselves – I know its so difficult to detach for even a little while. (My husband has many health problems.)

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