Wednesday, May 18, 2005

blogging and discretion

There was an interesting discussion on a blog I regularly read, about how open, or not, to be in blogging. It has me wondering, again, if a personal blog can be really successful if written with an over-abundance of discretion.

I’ve thought a lot about this in the seven or so months I’ve been blogging. And though some of my favorite blogs are those in which bloggers are open and self-disclosing, I have come to the conclusion that for me there are limits to how open I can allow myself to be. There are two Bible principles which will rule what I post – no matter how it affects blog traffic (and, please, know I am in no way imposing this standard on others):

1. "The wise woman builds her house,
But the foolish pulls it down with her hands." Proverbs 14:1

house, bayit (by-eet): (Strong’s #1004) House, household, family, clan, temple building, home.

The application of this for my blog means I am very careful not to damage my house. According to this, 'house' includes my immediate family, my extended family, and I also include my church family. Thus I try not to say things on my blog which would hurt, defame or slander these people. My test: If I wouldn’t say it to someone’s face, and would feel uncomfortable knowing they had read it on the web, then I shouldn’t post it.

2. "the older women ... admonish the young women to... (be) obedient to their own husbands ... (Titus 2:3-5)

The application of this for my blog means I have put it under my husband’s headship. You read right! This is not easy for me, strong-minded, individualistic and opinionated woman that I am. However, in the 24 years I’ve been married, I’ve come to see the wisdom of deferring to my husband in areas such as this. More than once he has saved me from myself!

(For example, many years ago, when we were newly married, I took a survey phone call. I started answering the questions, but quickly became uneasy as I realized the questioner was leading me to talk about personal stuff. By the time I finally had the presence of mind to cut off the call, I knew I had already said too much.

After I discussed this incident with my husband, we made it a family rule never to answer telephone surveys. I know I’ve been spared a lot of aggravation and angst because of being under his leadership in that department...and others.)

In the area of my blog, I don’t have him vet things I write before I post them. But I have asked him to tell me if he sees anything he thinks is unwise, and I will delete it (so if my blog has offended you – it’s his fault!)

I follow these two principles because of the reason given in last fragment of that section from Titus: "...that the Word of God may not be blasphemed." There are already too many forces working to erode God’s reputation. I would be sad to think my blog could be another one of them.


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