The year was 1997. I was graduating from high school, and a man named John Barger decided to call his website a "weblog." A phenomenon ensued. No, not as a result of my promenade across the high school gymnasium to the tune of "Pomp and Circumstance." A new kid had come to Internet Town: The blog was born.
Because you're here, reading this post today, you have joined the ranks of 77 percent of Internet users who read at least one blog written by the 6.7 million people who blog on sites solely dedicated to the practice (as opposed to those who blog more informally on social media).1 And not among the least of these is the wildly popular, sometimes disdained, the loved, the hated . . . The Mommy Blog.
v. A new mother's unfortunate need to talk endlessly about their new children despite the fact that no one actually cares. Updates and pictures and stories are plastered all over social media. Can continue indefinitely and is not limited to only new mothers and their babies, but that is what is most common.
Jane: This is Tommy playing with his blocks! So cute! I'm so blessed!
Carol: This is the tenth picture you've posted of your kid in an hour, stop with the Mommy Blogging already!
This slightly silly definition pokes fun at Mommy Bloggers, but it also hints at a source of irritation among some circles of Christian women, particularly those women who are yearning for solid, serious biblical teaching. And you know what? That's a great desire. Hopefully that's why you're here, visiting the Revive Our Hearts website today.
But this presents a problem for many a Christian Mommy Blogger, stuck between nasty comments from non-believers that her blog is "too Christian" and snarky remarks from Christian readers that her blog is "not Christian enough." So as a peculiar intersection of these circles—a full-time mom, a part-time blogger, a theology nerd, and a Mommy Blog reader—I'd like to ask you to extend some grace to the Mommy Blogger. I want to encourage you: Don't count out the Mommy Blog—not just yet. Here's why:
Four Reasons We Should Give the Mommy Blogger a Break
1. The Internet is the new well.
Tim Challies wrote an article recently that really got my mind churning on this. He emphasized that although our increased reliance on technology and "devices" has its pitfalls, God has used every advance in technology throughout history to bring glory to Himself. So let's assume that the Mommy Blog, the secular Mommy Blog even, is not outside of God's ability to use to showcase the loveliness of His Son.
Like it or not, the Internet has become the new well—that place of meeting that just about all of us use to obtain the resources we need to get through everyday life. We meet there. We get information there. We share our burdens there. We go there for a cool drink of encouragement or for a break from the rigors of the rest of life. It's a well where we find everyone from the town philosopher to the town drunk. The Mommy Blog is where moms go to chat while they look for water. We have the ability to offer them a drink.
2. Christian Mommy Bloggers can be tentmakers, too.
We all know many believers who are engaged in business and industry. Christians build houses, sell real estate, teach, fix cars, care for the sick, engage in retail, banking, commerce, and just about every occupation under the sun. Yet few are met with the expectation that every aspect of their occupation be overtly and explicitly "Christian." Though all of our work is to be committed to the Lord and done as unto Him (Prov. 16:3, Col. 3:23), that doesn't mean that every post by the Christian Mommy Blogger needs to spiritualize the art of stain removal or choosing a paint color for the nursery.
3. Mommy Blogging, and our encouragement of it, affirms our belief in the value of the work of motherhood.
So you've read more than your fair share of posts about cloth vs. disposable, bottle vs. breast, preservative vs. organic. I get it. You may be tired of reading suggestions for calming toddler tantrums and clipping the best coupons. But bearing with, and even participating in, those discussions allows us the opportunity to help younger women see the importance of the work they are doing, even when it feels completely mundane.
4. Believers engaging in Mommy-Blogdom have a window to point moms to Christ.
In the United States alone, there are 43.5 million women between the ages of fifteen and fifty who have children; 3.9 million women have given birth in the last twelve months. Motherhood is wonderful and exhilarating. It's also exhausting . . . and sometimes petrifying. Moms are often needy and vulnerable. Christian bloggers and blog readers have the opportunity to interact with millions of women who are searching for the significance in the hard work they are doing. So . . .
Let's Meet Them at the Well
What was so significant about the well in John 4 that the Samaritan woman went there a sinner and left as a saint? It was amidst the simple, physical, mundane task of drawing water that she was met by the Messiah. In that secular arena, a sacred meeting occurred. An outcast found communion at the well. What had begun as a conversation about a physical need ended in the woman's recognition of her spiritual need. Ravi Zacharias said it well:
She had come with a bucket. He sent her back with a spring of living water.
She had come as a reject. He sent her back being accepted by God Himself.
She came wounded. He sent her back whole.
She came laden with questions. He sent her back as a source for answers.
She came living a life of quiet desperation. She ran back overflowing with hope.
Jesus Christ Himself is the answer to our needs. He is enough for all. He is the Bread of Life and the spring of living water.
God used a simple spring in the Samaritan woman's life to bring forth a waterfall of repentance from which a sea of faith was born. There was nothing that special about the well. There was no sign saying "Jesus is Here." But there she was met with living water.
So believers, bloggers, readers, let's keep on blogging, crafting, diapering, parenting, cooking, styling, and mommy-life-ing. Let's do it all as unto the Lord. And as we do, whether writing or commenting, let's take thoughtful opportunities to offer drops, dippers, and buckets-full of living water. Millions of moms are thirsty and are coming to plain old wells. Keep on giving them the gospel water. And we'd be wise to remember the words of Ed Stetzer, who said, "Preach the gospel, and since it's necessary, use words."
Friends, don't count out the Mommy Blog. Not just yet.