I’ve been slacking for months now on the whole writing blog posts thing. It’s not that I’ve been too busy, or that there hasn’t been anything to write about (hey, as a writer, I enjoy making something out of nothing). No, instead I’ve been struggling with a question of purpose, which I’ve decided to share in the hopes that writing it out and maybe hearing others’ thoughts could lead to some resolution.
Let me just start with the questions themselves:
Why am I writing at Modest Exaggeration?
Is it time for this blog to “retire”?
In a way, I can’t believe I’m considering this, as this project was my baby for a long time. I think it still could be, but not until I come to a solution.
The problem can be summed up in a word: selfishness.
Let me explain. Born an introvert, I have struggled with excessive introspection, worry and anxiety, and overthinking. My default setting is thinking that whatever mood I’m in reflects the state of the entire world. You wouldn’t believe (unless you already know) how much those bad habits affect everything else in a person’s life. But it gets worse. As you already know, our culture is “me-focused.” So, take those struggles I already have, and add in…Facebook, where it’s easy to compare myself to everyone in my feed, whether strangers or close friends. Add Twitter, which tells me my every fleeting thought and complaint is worthy of typing out and sending into cyberspace. Add Instagram, which encourages me to constantly snap pictures of myself and what I’m doing so that others can see. Add Pinterest, which introduces me to the newest sweater, hairstyle, or lipstick shade that I absolutely need to be beautiful and happy. Add, especially, the popular idea that I deserve anything I want.
What do I get?
1) A total mess
2) A modern Narcissus
3) Real sick and tired of myself
At church last week, the pastor mentioned Bob Dylan’s classic tune to remind us of a vital truth. “It may be the devil, or it may be the Lord,” Dylan sang, “but you’re gonna have to serve somebody.”
That lyric reflects Matthew 6: 24: “No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.” (NIV)
And I cannot serve both God and myself. I’m finally understanding how true this is. If I’m running around, trying to promote myself, trying to “be happy” through any means possible, trying to secure the things my sinful self wants, trying to be better than others, determining morality based on what “seems right,” and complaining and worrying about everything, well, in all practical matters, I’m my own lord.
And how ridiculous. As John MacArthur puts it in his excellent book, Anxious for Nothing, “Christians who worry believe God can redeem them, break the shackles of Satan, take them from hell to heaven, put them into His kingdom, and give them eternal life; but they just don’t think He can get them through the next couple of days.” (pg 28)
My point is basically this. Worry, extreme introspection, materialism, and self-centeredness all go together. I have finally realized how present all of these things are in my own life and am working hard to cut them out. I’ve stopped using Twitter. I avoid online shopping. I try to do more and think less. Et cetera. It has helped!
Which finally brings me to the matter of this blog. Is it helpful for me to have an online spot that’s all mine? My thoughts, my views, stuff I like, stuff I want, stuff that happened to me?
I guess the real question is, who am I trying to glorify through writing these posts?
think pray about it.
(if you got this far, thanks for reading this strange, convoluted, talking-to-myself post. writing this out helped a lot. feel free to comment; I’d appreciate it!)