Last spring I stopped blogging.
While I love writing, blogging had become a chore and I wasn’t enjoying it.
The previous autumn I shut down my personal blog, and focused on theWilsonsInDublin.com. It seemed like a good way to keep friends and family up-to-date with our lives on this side of the pond.
It didn’t work as I’d hoped. It was frustrating trying to come up with stories about our lives in Ireland, that we would want broadcast on a public forum such as this.
Stopping just seemed like the right thing to do. And it was.
I enjoyed the break. While I’d enjoyed running the blog in the past, it had started to feel like one more thing on my list of things to do. It was not something I was finding life in. And once I stopped, I wondered if I’d ever get back into it.
About two months into my time away, I knew I wanted to start again…the question was what to write about.
I knew it needed to be something I’m passionate about, and for which I have some level of experience/expertise.
Over the past year or so, I’ve wrestled with what it means to be passionate about something. As a starting place, I think ‘passion,’ it needed to meet the following two requirements. It has to be something that:
1) I spend at least some time thinking about every day,
2) I invest time and money learning more about it on a regular basis.
So for example, while I think about and consume coffee everyday, I don’t invest time or money in learning more about coffee. I have no idea how to roast it, or anything like that…I still need to look up what Arabica means. While I enjoy drinking good coffee, that’s about it. I got a free iBook about coffee last year…I still haven’t read it.
And while the Boston Red Sox or Apple/Mac devices would meet both of those requirements, neither seemed to make much sense. A Red Sox blog might make more sense if I say lived in Boston, not Dublin. And without the cash to buy the latest Apple devices…well you get the point.
Finally, I wanted it to be something that would have appeal to people who I’ve connected with on my previous blogs, and have the potential to reach a wider group of people as well.
Here’s where I landed…
- Five years ago I was leading a growing church in Ithaca, New York.
- Four years ago, I was seriously considering leaving full-time ministry.
- Three years ago, I signed up again and began planning a move to Dublin to plant another church.
- For the past two years I’ve had zero church leadership involvement…I’ve just been ‘showing up for church.’ (As much as that phrase makes me cringe.)
- And now we are on the front end of planting a new church in the Clontarf area of Dublin.
At times this process has been difficult and painful. Yet, we’ve met some incredible people along the way who’ve helped us navigate this journey we found ourselves on. In the midst of this, Liz and I are at best place we have ever been. And our relationship has gone to a level we wouldn’t have dared imagine a decade ago.
Along the way as we’ve wrestled with what it means to be followers of Jesus, and church leaders. We’ve gained some insight on what it is to be part of a church, while not being in leadership.
And we’ve met so many others who’ve also ended up on a path they didn’t plan on…yet are finding life in ways they’d never imagined.
I want to use this space to talk about some of what we’ve learned.
Of course we’re still in this process. Part of me thinks that at this point we should have a lot more answers…the fact is, we have ended up with even more questions.
If that sounds like an interesting conversation, I hope you’ll join us.
(*the image in this post is of the Wood Bridge & Bull Island with Howth in the background.)