I had a conversation with a friend a couple of days ago that reminded me how careful I need to be when I am using language to describe my perception of reality.
This blog is an attempt to observe and describe my reality, particularly as it relates to having spiritual conversations in everyday life. But in order to do that, I find myself having to draw bright lines around categories of people - people who are "outside the church" or who are "post-Christian" or who are "unbelievers." The very need to label and categorize people is counter-cultural and makes me very uncomfortable.
Yet I find that in order to share what's going on and to analyze what's happening and to perhaps suggest some things that might "work" or have a positive effect in the real world, I have to do it. But I'm always afraid that I'm going to violate the privacy or trust of someone I love.
So I find myself walking a very thin line. I want to be able to talk about what's going on in my world because I think that the successes and mistakes can be instructive for my future actions and those of anyone who might be reading the blog who cares about the same things I do. But things said on a blog can't really be erased and there could be a few people reading who come to their own conclusions about what's being said without ever asking for clarification.
I guess what I'm saying is that I realize that this medium lends itself to conversation without relationship. Part of my hesitancy in writing the last month has been trying to balance that. I don't want to alienate the people I care about by what I might flippantly say on here. And no matter how carefully I word things, it's still possible to say something the wrong way.
And I guess what I'm asking is that if you're reading this and you're a friend of mine, then I'd like for this to be a dialogue instead of a one-way conversation. I actually want to know what effect my words might be having and I want to be able to clarify if I haven't been as careful or as precise as I should have been. I really don't want to alienate people or make friendships impossible because of how I speak about what I observe and experience.