Sunday, February 13, 2011

Lessons Learned--or not...

So I'm back after a six week absence from writing.  Over the past few weeks I've considered blogging several times but didn't for a couple of reasons.

One reason is that my heart just wasn't in it. I didn't feel like taking the time to write out what I was thinking about. It's not like I didn't have things to say--I just didn't feel like taking the time to figure out how to say it.  If you've been reading for very long, you might think that it sounds strange since I usually just start typing and let the words flow.  What you read is pretty much the same as what you would get if we were conversing one on one.

The difference is -- in conversation there is additional communication that is hard to convey in writing. Facial expressions, body language, tone, speed...all of these things are non-verbal ways of adding to the meaning of the actual words.  These same things allow us to sense when somebody didn't actually get the same meaning from what you said that you intended for them to get and you can begin to make corrections.

And then there are the times that I just say what I think and it is offensive to people.  That can happen in conversation almost as easily as it does in writing.

That happened a couple of months ago as I expressed some frustration and then had to go back and delete part of a post and make some defense of why I said what I said.  I have to admit that part of that really ticked me off (and still does a little bit). After all, this is my blog. Read it if you want. Don't read it if you don't. maybe that's unreasonable.

I do want people to read my blog. I want to get feedback about the things that I've written.  And I don't expect everybody to agree with everything that I write.  As a matter of fact, I expect that there are plenty of you that don't agree with me most of the time. I often say that I'm a moral conservative, a political moderate and a social liberal.  Given that description, I'm sure to offend most people at one time or another.

I know a bunch of people that say that's not possible. You can't be a moral conservative and vote for a democrat.  You can't be a moral conservative and be for healthcare reform. You can't be a Christian and vote for anybody that's not a Christian. And on and on...

Did I mention that sometimes I offend people?

So, while I may try to be less offensive, I'm not sure that I'll succeed.  I'm pretty sure that if I'm going to keep from offending people, I'm going to have to stop writing.  In certain situations, I am really not all that concerned about offending people. There are times when we do what has to be done or say what has to be said and people are going to take offense.

One of the things that I wrote in defense of my previous post was, "I realize that it is a fault of mine that I have become less concerned about offending those that are more mature Christians--secure in their salvation, and more concerned about reaching those that are lost and securing the spiritual foundations in our young believers. I need to be more purposeful in doing the latter without the offense."

I'll keep writing...and I'll try to be less offensive.

As a side note:  I started writing this afternoon with a post that would have certainly offended some people...maybe I'm learning...or maybe it will keep for another day.