Sunday, February 28, 2010

How open is too open?

Recently a friend of mine on facebook posted that they think it is sad that the gift of privacy has been lost through facebook and blogs. I sat for a good five minutes before I decided to respond. Essentially, I disagree. While to an extent, I can understand that we "hear" about everything through a facebook status or through a blog post, however I disagree that we have lost the gift. In fact, I think that those of us on the receiving end have gained a gift. A beautiful gift.

This friend's post in and of itself was a gift to me (although they probably didn't know it). It was a gift, as it made me think. How open is too open on our blogs, or facebook statuses? Are there certain things that are private and shouldn't be shared? For me the answer is yes. For someone else that answer may be no. I strive to be open and honest in real life, so for me anything I would talk about in real life is open to talking about on my blog or facebook. For some, the information I share may be too much, for others it's nothing. However, I would not be true to myself and would feel like I was lying if I didn't blog or facebook about something that I typically think about, talk about. It's all part of my bold blogging. For those of you who read this (or my facebook), know that you will read posts on marriage, child-rearing (and yes that includes breastfeeding), and my journey to become a woman of God. I'm pretty much an open book and I'm ok with that. I will tell you that I'm fairly certain that the only thing you won't read on here is about our sex life (in fact this is probably the only time you will see me type that word). It's just not something I feel would glorify God (talking about it that is) or help others which is why I blog in the first place. Anything else is fair "game" so to speak. As long as my husband (who has read pretty much every post) is ok with me publishing and I know that God is prompting me to post, I will post. 

Which brings me to the ultimate question I had: Were our lives ever meant to be private? Or were we to be open, honest, and uplifting to each other. I believe that God intended the latter and that man in their inability to be open has tried to hide things that are embarrassing, wrong, etc. and we just glorify and post the good, or we don't post the things that may be taboo to talk about in our culture (politics, religion, how to raise children, etc.). Ultimately it is our pride that tries to hide the bad in our lives and only show the good. I have a different look on blogging, message boards, facebook statuses etc. than my friend. I see them all as a beautiful gift God has given me. Many of my friends, through posts on social media have opened my eyes to things I never even knew. They challenged me and made me think on things I otherwise never would have had they not posted. I would like to think that I have become a better wife, mama, and woman of God because someone went against the norm and clicked the publish post button even when they knew they would be open to criticism because of it.

So I will keep posting. I will keep blogging bodly. I will keep being honest in all areas of my life because one never knows who God knew needed to see that post, or that facebook status. One never knows the beautiful gift of openness that God wanted us to have with each other so we can be drawn closer to Him.

*Disclaimer: To my friend (if you happen to be reading) who originally had this as your facebook status: This post is not geared toward you or to attack you. Rather, it is just my opinion on the matter and actually something I have felt God laying on my heart to share for awhile. So thank you for being bold enough to post in the first place so that God could prompt me to post. It's that kind of ripple effect that God desires to have in our friendships.


  1. Interesting thoughts. :) I think "privacy" is in the eye of the beholder, like you were saying. To me, sharing about the pathways that the LORD leads me down - the hard ones as well as the joyful ones - is partly a way for me to record what He teaches my heart. But it's also an opportunity to reach out and share my heart with other women who may be going through similar stuff.

    I started blogging for our families, because we live a bit aways from everyone. But honestly, sharing the hard stuff (that some people may feel personally is too private for THEM to share), and reading the comments and emails about them have been the biggest blessing to me in my blogging experience. A lot of the things that I've said, "But God, I don't *want* to write about that..." have helped me to develop deeper accountability relationships with women. In several cases, some of my hardest posts to write have actually helped to initiate a "real" friendship with a former lurker or new reader. :)

    There's not a whole lot I won't talk about on my blog either. ;) Although I will spend days and weeks stewing over something, trying to find the most graceful way to word something, particularly when it's a controversial/gray issue. (Like when I blogged about birth control, and Santa Claus.) Blogging can be hard to get your heart across, you know? Without the tone/inflection and dialogue opportunities you get through discussing stuff with someone in person, I feel a great desire, need, and responsibility to demonstrate the beauty and grace of Christ abundantly.

    But like you, there are some things that I choose not to blog about. Whether it's something too sacred to me (many many many elements of my marriage), or to protect my own heart, there are some things that I feel best benefit anyone involved to keep to myself. Any time I feel like writing something that essentially would amount to a thinly veiled passive-aggressive rant toward someone I *KNOW* reads my blog (and girl, I have been tempted), I choose not to. Certainly not edifying. For anyone. :)

    BUT...I have blogged (in hints and drip-drops) about sex. And will continue to. :) I never share anything personal, no details. But I am incredibly passionate about us as Believers recovering the joy and passion of a sexual relationship in marriage, and I think that's something that more young women need to hear. ;)

    Longest comment ever. :)

  2. First of all Lauren, you always put a smile on my face with your kind, and very thought out comments! :) No matter how long they are, I love them and keep them coming! :)

    You have so elequently put many of my thoughts into your comment. You also have challenged me to think about writing about sex. In fact, I once remember ranting to my husband how Christian women aren't allowed to talk about sex as it make us look "bad" somehow. I think I should have probably re-worded that to say that you won't find me writing about our sex life. However, I agree with you, I do think young women (or any woman for that matter) needs to hear about sex within marriage and how it is beautiful and from God.

    In fact, you have totally made me think now Lauren (see another positive of blogging) and I am sure in no time, I'll be typing out my thoughts on this and one day click that wonderful little button called "Publish Post". :)

    Thanks Lauren!

  3. Awesome post! Really. I'm a niche blogger, and don't share as much as most bloggers might. I do think that parents need to be careful with giving too many details away about where they live, kids names, that they are leaving for vacation etc. There are dangerous people out there reading blogs too.....and a bit of protection is good.

    I do think God will use us all in all forms of communication...blogging, tweeting, etc. I've found some amazing people who share such personal stories.....and I can relate to them. That's a blessing.

    Visiting from SITS!!

  4. So good to remember Debra! Thanks for stopping by! :)


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