Monday, September 13, 2010

in the beginning...

Okay. I'm going to try not to be intimidated by the blank box staring me in the face. Does anyone else experience a feeling of excitement and anticipation when opening journals (or in this case, text boxes) for the first time? Before beginning to write the page is pregnant with potential and I am excited, albeit apprehensive, to find out what explosions of creativity will burst forth or what crazy stories I will have to write about.

It's usually not as good as I hoped.

Even in my diaries I feel this pressure (from who knows where?) to come up with clever turns of phrases or intense theological understandings or riotous anecdotes or all of the above, as if people are going to read every word I write. Fortunately, as soon as I get started the intimidation begins to wear off and I can continue on my merry way, comforted by the realization that I am not, in fact, a genius and that my words will only reach a few people at most. And that is enough.

So...why create a blog? Are the blank pages of a composition notebook not good enough? I appease myself by saying that I am being a good steward of the environment by not cutting down trees just so I can write down my mediocre musings (plus, it's faster to type than to write and, hello, we're in the 21st century!). But why not just do an online journal? Does my ego need to be stroked just a little bit more? Well, it probably does, but it's more than that: I am slowly realizing that to remain healthy it is necessary for me to process things either out loud or in writing, and since I am not good at verbalizing my feelings, I should resort to writing. I also thought that it would be a great way to connect with friends and family all over the world, to share my thoughts, experiences, sermons, songs, poems, prayers, etc. (after all, there's only so much you can post on facebook without taking over your friends' newsfeeds). Additionally, by making this public it will keep me accountable for posting on a somewhat regular basis. That's the hope, anyway.

So what's up with the blog title? What the heck are "thin places" anyway? Contrary to popular opinion, they are not locations where groups of skinny people hang out. It is actually a Celtic phrase that describes the places where the "veil" between heaven and earth is thin, where you are able to notice God's presence effortlessly. Basically, I am attempting to reflect on my life, at both the mundane and extraordinary events, and try to pick out where I see God's presence. I thought the title appropriate since I have Irish roots and, well, love Ireland and Celtic spirituality (The best explanation of thin places that I have found thus far is in this article. It's a quirky little essay but captures the essence of what I am trying to accomplish. Check it out if you get the chance!).

Well, I have reached my limit for tonight: another part of self-care is making sure to get enough sleep. Until next time!


  1. Whenever I consider what to write to others, even en masse, the primary thought I try to keep while writing is if it reflects me. For job applications, certainly my thoughts get a thorough polish, but if I'm speaking from my heart, little is altered. Although I feared letting people get to know me unfiltered in my youth, I have found a network of people who are glad to know the real me. Thankfully, my personality has changed for the better in the last several years, actively embracing the positive things in life and letting the negatives pass once lessons are learned from them.

    Anywho, I'm glad that you are getting your thoughts out in the open: it frees your mind to embrace new thoughts. Also, it gives those of us not fortunate enough to be around you opportunities to share our thoughts and encouragement with you. I hope this journey into blogging is fruitful for you :-)

    -Scott Mitchell

  2. OK, I am now one of you followers, a disciple. I need help with sermon preparation, daily devotionals, and personal finance. Just kidding, but I look forward to hearing from and about you with this blog. Maybe someday I will try to do the same.
    Betty Henson