Wait a minute. I’m blogging about blogging. Definitely feels as if I’m falling down the proverbial “rabbit hole” with Alice to Wonderland.
Or the postmodern version of choosing the blue pill or the red pill with Neo in The Matrix. A surreal experience.
Whatever. Last week, ChurchRelevance posted its list of the Top 100 Church Blogs. The description of the ranking goes…
There are hundreds of great church blogs and ministry blogs to read, but do you ever wonder which church blogs everyone else is reading?
I do, which is why I have compiled a list of the world’s top church blogs.
Some focus exclusively on ministry, while others are more like theology blogs. Regardless of how you label them, these are the world’s most popular church blogs written by many of today’s most influential church leaders, theologians, and Christ followers.
Here are a few observations about the list.
1. None of the blogs are actually from a church
Instead the list is dominated by individual pastors and ministry experts. Though many of the pastors and planters use their blogs as a primary communication tool, you would be hard-pressed to actually connect to a church through one of them. Instead, they serve as way to connect with the personal life of a church leader.
I’m not sure what this means but I think it is important to note. Churches have websites and people have blogs. Remember, the name “blog” is a contraction of the newly invented and quickly discarded word “weblog.” Most church websites simply dispense information. They are the technological version of the newsletter once received by a human being in a car delivering paper to a metal box on a post next to your driveway. The old timers call it mail.
2. Transparency observed
The blogs offered by leaders give insights into their lives that the church has not seen in many generations. And it is a welcome change. While in seminary, I once attended a lunch for local ministers in which a beloved pastor in my denomination addressed us about the ministry. His entire message could be summed up thusly: Act professional. It was all about pomp and circumstance, clothing and appearance, proper enunciation and skill. Blogs have opened up the gates for us to share the joys and pains of life as a larger community of faith.
Like many others, I recently followed the journey of Tony Morgan as he made a transition from one ministry to another. His postings were not brutal, just honest. And they were hopeful. Thanks Tony – your journey is helping me with mine.
Blogs are a temptation to be braggadocios or an opportunity to share honestly. I’m glad to see the latter is prevailing.
3. Ministries are marketing to you
I’ve heard a few naysayers object to banner ads, posting speaking schedules and the like on personal blogs. But I see no harm in it. You just need to be aware that some make a living this way and they blog about it. Buying the resources, attending the conferences, and inviting guest speakers to church are simply a part of church history at the moment. And so it is a part of blogging. As we show proper discernment, chances are you can find needed wisdom and resources for your church.
If you want to be offended by something, pick something like this.
4. Plenty of free resources and insights
Perhaps this and point #2 are the reasons we visit blogs as often as we do. We read up on the lives of other leaders and read up on the resources that will help our own leadership. The amount of information available in general is simply mind-boggling. The Christian realm is no different. And it is a bit paradigm-breaking. Many leaders and churches today either have the means to give away what they know or they are simply making the decision to give it away no matter the cost to their own ministries.
Swerve is a great example. The leadership of Life Church give insights, overview new technology and push readers to their Open site to gain access to even more free stuff. They have decided that giving away their materials and insights are good for their church and the kingdom. And then there is the ever-blogging Ed Stetzer. With his LifeWay Research Blog, Stetzer and team delivers quality research and insights on a weekly basis. His blog has become one of the premier destinations for understanding the crossroads of faith and culture.
As long as humans do anything en masse, someone will be there to rank it. Blogs are just the latest thing. Hopefully they will also be helpful.
What are your favorite blogs to learn from, gain encouragement, or just get a good chuckle?
Oh and do me a favor—Tweet, forward, and Facebook status my URL immediately! grin.