A few weekends ago I had an interesting experience with a Lutheran clergyperson.
We were talking about outreach as a function of lay ministry, and I was trying to explain online Christianity to him and why I thought it was a pretty exciting place to be; online discussion forums and weblogs and e-mail groups, all being visited by the seeking; the disillusioned-but-hopeful; the misinformed; the clueless; the angry needing someone to vent to who understood and cared and "had a word" for them; the spiritually disconnected trying to "find their people."
At first the pastor looked at me quizzically, but then his expression changed to one of the steeple-fingered Helping Professional. As in: "Und zo...venn you are talking to zees imaginary friends in schpace, are zay zaying tinks to you? Vat is it zat you tink zay are zaying to you? How often do you schpeak mit zese friends in schpace?"
He just didn't get it.
(And, for the record, this wasn't my pastor, who really does get it.)
It gets lonely out in cyberspace if you're a Lutheran; especially if you're an ELCA Lutheran. Where are we? Why aren't there more of us around?
Maybe Garrison Keillor has it right. Maybe we're a shy people (present company excepted) who just don't like engaging in public gut spillage: Who do I think I am?
If that is so...well then, gosh darn it, get over it. If Herr Doktor Luther were alive today, where do you think he'd be? Online -- you know it! (Probably ranting about the new Pope Benedict even as I type.)
Have a Powdermilk Biscuit. Have two. Feel that courage starting to warm your blood. Here I blog...I can do no other...God help me! There's the spirit!
It's fun here in Blogdom. It really is. And you needn't be a computer genius to run a blog. As some of my readership knows from trying to explain HTML to me, I'm kind of a techno-blockhead. So if I can publish my own blog -- even occasionally stick a picture in it -- so can you.
We need more ELCA blogs. So if you've been toying with the idea...go for it. Come on. I dare you. I double-dog dare you. You can do this.