With more than 2 million people actively blogging on the Internet, the weblog is an excellent means for pastors to stretch their minds and (maybe) to reach their flocks. Tim Bednar, a former youth pastor and now church planter in Minneapolis, advocates blogging as a tool for spiritual formation. His website is e-church.com.
How many people blog for spiritual reasons?
A Perseus survey estimated that by the end of 2004 there would be 10 million blogs. A report from Pew suggests that somewhere between 2 and 7 percent of Internet users blog, which puts the number between 2.5 to 8.9 million. The blogs4God.com search engine lists over 1,100 Christian bloggers, but that is hardly definitive; blogs4God only lists those who register their blog. I would estimate it in the hundreds of thousands because the majority of bloggers who discuss religion would not label themselves as "spiritual bloggers."
Why are they undercover?
There are bloggers who are obviously Christian like HealYourChurchWebsite.com or my own weblog, but I've found bloggers avoid being labeled.
In the blogosphere, labels matter little; reputations mean everything. Spiritual bloggers often take an incarnational approach; we bring Christ into our conversations on The Da Vinci Code, Janet Jackson, theology, or politics. We let the reader decide whether we are spiritual.
How is it different from journaling?
Blogging is like spiritual journaling in that it is a discipline. About two-thirds of the roughly 10 million blogs are abandoned after two months. It is hard to write every day. It is also like journaling in that it attempts to connect with God through writing.
The most significant difference is that blogs expect an audience. Bloggers learn quickly that their blogs ...