A NOTE ABOUT OUR DIGITAL COMMUNITY (AND A BIT OF HUMOR)

 

Hello my friends. Hope all is well! The following is a brief note regarding how we operate as bloggers and the interaction thereof which you may find helpful and interesting.

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Like some of you I’ve been doing this a long time. I’ve “met” some really great people here over the years. Like you, I have also had readers come and go. It is always great to get new readers who like your stuff and believe it to be edifying. On the other hand, we sometimes lose readers. Some stop reading your stuff. Some stop blogging altogether. Some delete their sites. New bloggers come on board. It is all very fluid. When I look at some of my posts from just a few years ago I wonder what happened to those readers. If you do this blogging thing long enough you will have a turnover of supporters several times. This is all completely normal.

A NOTE ABOUT THIS MEDIUM

Attention spans have generally become very short. When I started out here going on twelve years ago my posts were usually in the range of one to two pages and occasionally three. Anything exceeding that was broken into two to three parts and very rarely did I write a series longer than three parts. From time to time after that I occasionally wrote a four page post. Due to the nature of the medium I realized that relatively short posts work best and if I wrote a series, three parts at the most would work best. If one uses the same title in a series, readers have a tendency to drift off and lose interest. This is perfectly understandable.

This has happened in my current series, but the title of a series cannot change unless one scraps the entire series. The writer usually never knows if a reader doesn’t read or stops reading due to the unchanging title in a series, the content of articles, or the length of articles. It could be all three or a combination. (My posts have become longer as of late.) We are therefore continually looking for what may work best to (1) Honor the Lord who has called us to this work to do what He wants, and (2) Strive to make our posts as readable, informative, interesting, and edifying as possible.

Here are a few other things of note: I learned early on that there are bloggers out there who desire to be helpful and point out things about this medium that may have escaped our notice. We always appreciate helpful hints and ideas. I had one particular blogging friend whose site I followed who liked doing this and I did learn a few things. Also, if we have a good well-rounded blog roll we cannot help but learn a great many things that will assist us in our walk, which is in essence the entire purpose of being here and doing this. My thanks to all of you for the content you post and your distinctive style.

To go along with the good, however, there’s a tad bit of bad. I want you all to know that I will never Like a post unless I read your post in its entirety. There are some who do not do this. They may not read a post at all or only read a portion but will still leave their calling card. I remember the first time many years ago when I got blasted with Like spam. I suddenly received a ton of Likes on many of my posts and, of course, knew the other blogger had never read any of them. I also learned you cannot do anything about this. It just happened again a few days ago. I suddenly received many Likes from one individual who never read the many posts he or she referenced and apparently only wanted to post his or her icon. This is not good.

Again, most of us never do this. I never do it. It is therefore difficult to know for sure how many people actually read your posts and Like them for what they contain. Regardless of such not so great behavior, we learn who our solid readers are by their great behavior and attitude, and their ongoing consistent support. At the end of the day we are all family, those of us who have given our lives to the Lord Jesus. We are each fallible, however, and need one another. We also obviously need the Lord. Always.

I remember one occasion when I was a rookie Christian. I was attending one of those churches in which we had a time of testimony. We could stand up and share with everyone there some wonderful thing the Lord did. We had a great song leader guy who also did the testimony service, as we called it back then. I’m sure some of you are familiar with the format. He would ask whoever had a testimony (a short account of something great the Lord recently did in our lives) to stand up. Then he would call on us in turn. At that time I had been engaging in some spiritual warfare and was learning, as a rookie, that sometimes God has some serious enemies. I decided to let fly with something on my heart regarding this which may or may not have fit a testimony service. I stood there in the small congregation and said something to this effect, that sometimes living out our Christianity can have serious repercussions in that the enemy can hit pretty hard. And we want to hit back but know that isn’t right and we must simply take the hit and then figure out how to fight in the Spirit. So the punchline to my brief “testimony,” delivered with a not so bright and cheery attitude, was, “And if the Lord was not watching over us and protecting us, we’d all be sitting ducks!” It got pretty quiet…

So again, we need the Lord. Without Him the enemy would treat us like little duck targets at a circus sideshow knocking down one after the other. And we need each other. Each of us has our part to engage in to help one another. Keep up the great work!  

PS: I remember a brother from that time years ago telling a story about another rookie Christian. It seems somebody actually had a successful witness with some big dude who happened to be a longshoreman. The guy was your typical hard-working brawler. He ended up giving his life to God and was gloriously saved and filled with the Holy Spirit. Nevertheless, he was still a brand new Christian and had much to learn. He was excitedly witnessing to one of his buddies at work one day and his buddy wanted no part of it. The guy being witnessed to began getting upset and angry, and belligerent toward his former friend. He even began disparaging the Lord. The brand new Christian doing the witnessing had no way to process this and thus reverted to known behavior. As he told a friend later, “Then all of the sudden the Holy Ghost came on me and I whipped the socks off him!”

© 2022 by RJ Dawson. All Rights Reserved.  

Posted on March 9, 2022, in Current Events and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 10 Comments.

  1. A great encouraging post and thanks for including the last story. We all like to laugh.

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  2. I always appreciate reading a full post before liking as well! I’ve had the “multiple likes” at once happen on several occasions and can tell the person never read the posts. Oh, well, but I think what is the point in liking if one didn’t read it, hmmm… thanks for the humor and transparency. Keep up the writing!

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  3. Lots of truth there RJ.
    A couple weeks ago, someone set a new record
    They “read” and “liked” 14 of my blogs in the same minute by my computer time stamp.
    I of course reciprocated by praying for him (a professed “christian” blogger).
    Loved the longshoreman. In my early days the wrestling team captain enthusiastically picked up the other wrestlers by lapel, slamed them into the lockers and would say “7:00 bible study tonight…be there!” It was quite effective attendance wise for high school kids. One young wrestler (now hall of fame status in his college) came to Christ because of that experience.

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    • Laughing Out Loud Gary! That’s great. But it appears as though, my friend, that such well-meaning persuasive manliness once illustrated by high school boys has taken a near deadly hit in this country overall. Wrestlers know well what the body can stand but nothing can withstand the fires of hell. Thick skin tender hearts always trumps thin skin thick hearts. These represent two cultural standards. The latter has presently taken the high ground. It’s time for a reversal of realities.

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  4. Good morning RJ, we are back to having internet for the weekend for now. Being without internet was such a reminder of times past, so many fun memories came to mind growing up without the link with the outside world. How sending a post card was the way to communicate with loved ones when away from home. How times have changed, we are living in a world where likes are more important then content and folks sometimes believe their worth is only of value by how popular they are on social media. I believe this new world of internet connection has its place though, it can reach out to more people sharing the word of God and hopefully your words and so many others can reach those who need to read it. Thank you RJ and have a wonderful weekend.

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    • Thank you Sandra. Great to hear from you! I’m sure you must have a lot of catching up to do. Y’all are living a wonderful adventure and it’s good that it is like those times of the past, at least in part. Our time of instant communication certainly has its place and can be a great blessing. It is a powerful tool for spreading the Gospel and allows Christians to partake of a worldwide digital Community. Some use it properly and others abuse it. Regarding content over shallowness, our Lord Jesus is certainly noted for His great “content” rather than personal popularity. Keep up the great work, Sandra. It is a blessing to many. Blessings to you and your husband on your travels.

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