Skip to main content

Blogging v. Preaching I

This morning, as I was headed to church, I began thinking about the differences between preaching and blogging. It was kind of a follow-on thought to a conversation Ann and I had the day before.

Saturday, we were at church so that she could practice the song she was planning to sing this morning at church. While she was working on that, I was tinkering with the sound system. I do this for two reasons. The first is that it keeps the church sound man hopping on Sundays. Sometimes hopping mad, but always hopping. The second is that we're striving to record our Sunday services so that we have both a taped record of what happens and we digitally record them on my laptop. These digital recordings become our church podcast.

The challenge is that I'm the one who understands the digital recording software and the laptop used for it. I am, however, a wee bit busy during the Sunday services, especially the sermon part, which is what we record to podcast. (We're cautious of doing the singing due to copyright laws.) So, I only have time to try and get it doing what I want it doing is when someone else is singing, talking, preaching, or the like. As I don't typically have someone else preaching when I'm here these days, that's out. It's too zany to keep running up and down during the rest of the service, and it's pretty distracting at that.

What Ann and I talked about after I spent some time on that was the fact that our sound system, as it's configured, is inadequate to the task of both doing good live sound and making a fully satisfactory recording. If we spent a little bit more money here and there, it might get better, but it's just not up to the task. However, the one thing that we cannot do is destroy our live services for the sake of the recording. While we find there are some people interested in the recording, it's not our primary purpose to put out a web worship service.

Just like it's not my primary purpose to blog. Both of these activities are not inherently bad, and can extend the impact of our church and my own preaching/writing well beyond Monticello.

However, just like I can't demolish our sound system or insist we spend $5,000 to install a parallel recording system, I can't spend all my time blogging. It's fun, but blogging isn't pastoring. This is both good and bad for the blogging.

It's good because I'll do things when I blog that I won't do when preaching. I'm generally more inclined to preach a series through a Bible book and take whatever comes. Other preachers pick topics, but I try to do whatever the text is about. When I blog, I'll blog on a topic. I'll take an illustration and find a way to make an application. I've been trying to dial back the politics in my preaching, but not so much in my blogging.

It's bad because sometimes I let the axe I have to grind in my blogging distract me from doing sermon prep work. It's bad that I am sometimes more concerned about my blog reader stats than my church's health. It's bad because I'll assume that people have read my blog and they haven't. Then I'll say something, expect them to understand and they don't. It's also bad because the truth is, I'm not paid to blog. I'm paid to pastor. Now, you can slice that however you want to, but there was not one person at Calvary Baptist that voted to call me as a pastor and hoped they would get someone with hip, updated web content in the bargain.

They called on me to provide solid, sound Biblical preaching and teaching, guidance and counsel, to this church. So, that's my first purpose. If I can use blogs and podcasts to help with that, then I will. If they get in the way, they've got to be discarded.

How about you? What things are you doing that are, in fact, a distraction from what you are supposed to be doing? What ways have you perhaps made secondary issues your main focus? Allow the tools and secondary activities to help with your goals, but don't let the side lines of life pull you off your path.

Stick with what you know you're supposed to be doing.



Popular posts from this blog

Book: By the Waters of Babylon

Worship. It is what the church does as we strive to honor God with our lips and our lives. And then, many churches argue about worship. I have about a half-dozen books on my shelf about worship, but adding Scott Aniol’s By the Waters of Babylon to the shelf has been excellent.

First of all, Aniol’s work is not based on solving a musical debate. While that branch of worship is often the most troublesome in the local church, By the Waters of Babylon takes a broader view. The starting point is the place of the church. That place is a parallel of Psalm 137, where the people of God, Israel, found themselves in a strange land. The people of God, again, find themselves in a strange land.
Second, in summary, the book works logically to the text of Scripture, primarily Psalm 137 but well-filled with other passages. Then it works outward from how the text addresses the problems submitted in the first chapter into how worship, specifically corporate worship, should look in the 21st century Weste…

Book Review: The Heart Mender by @andyandrews (Andy Andrews)

The Heart Mender: A Story of Second ChancesEver read a book that you just kind of wish is true?  That's my take on The Heart Mender by Andy Andrews.  It's a charming story of love and forgiveness, and it's woven into the historical setting of World War II America.  For the narrative alone, the book is worth the read, but the message it contains is well worth absorbing as well.However, let's drop back a minute.  This book was originally published under the title Island of Saints.  I read Island of Saints and enjoyed it greatly.  Now, Andrews has released it under a new title, with a few minor changes.  All of this is explained in the Author's Note at the beginning, but should be noted for purchaser's sake.  If you read Island of Saints, you're rereading when you read The Heart Mender.  Now, go ahead and reread it.  It will not hurt you one bit.Overall, the story is well-paced.  There are points where I'd like more detail, both in the history and the geog…

Sermon Recap for October 14

Here is what you'll find: there is an audio player with the sermon audios built-in to it, just click to find the one you want. You'll also find the embedded Youtube videos of each sermon.If you'd like, you can subscribe to the audio feed here: for iTunes users. Other audio feeds go here: video is linked on my personal Youtube Page here: are stockpiled here:!