Hi, I’m Robin, and welcome to this blog.
Seriously though: Blog? I mean, really?!
Ok, so fair point: social media often seems to be something of a hotbed for self-promotion.
And who would deny there appears to be some sort of craving within most of us for recognition and acknowledgement? Doesn’t the world of tweets, blogs, and status updates just encourage that?
My experience tells me you’d be a fool to claim to be immune to all that. But I don’t think that means we throw the baby out with the blogosphere.
I’ve blogged at That Happy Certainty since 2006, scrambling thoughts together on culture, theology and ministry since when I was an undergrad at Durham.
But, actually, over the years I’ve become convinced the battle is not on the web profile, it’s in the heart.
So I think the way blogging is often caricatured (whether it’s “blogs are the problem”, or “blogs are my best friend”) is just a bit too simplistic.
So, why have I chosen to give it a go?
Well, part of my own story is that I enjoy writing.
That’s why I got this started. Some people tend to think in their heads. Others people seem to need to process externally to think. For me, I’m in that latter category. To riff on Taylor Swift, I need to ‘think it out’, and writing helps me do that.
But a second reason is that it also helps me to communicate. Having to bosh something out in words and sentences forces you to think through how to do that.
Thirdly, blogging helps me to mark and remember. I suppose it’s kind of like an online moleskin, for storing all those nuggets and supposed ‘eureka’ moments that people help you to see.
And so rather than this being a place of self-publication, my hope is that it is a means to think, articulate and communicate, and to grow a little bit in all of those areas.
A blog is simply a tool that allows me to collect my own reflections and thoughts, to share reviews of things I’ve read or heard, as well to log and link to others’ posts and pages that I reckon are worth a read.
And doing all that publicly is mainly because the feedback loop of *you* reading this & telling me what you think actually gets me thinking, and partly because I live in hope that some of what I write will actually be useful and stimulating to you too. At least that’s the theory!
A little bit about me?
I’m married to Zoe, and we’ve got a little daughter and even littler boy. Zoe’s a nomad and I’m a hoarder. Bad combo if ever there was one.
We’re based in the town of Barrow-in-Furness in Cumbria, just south-west of the English Lake District, where I am what’s called a Pioneer Curate in the Church of England.
We’ve just enjoyed three years based at Oak Hill College, a theological college/seminary in north London, as I prepared to be a minister in the Church of England. As part of my MA in Theological & Pastoral Studies I researched how the Bible interacts with contemporary perspectives on how we view our bodies and how Christians might go about communicating an engaged theology of the body (more on that here).
We’ve found that it was great to invest a few years to get formed & equipped in community with others, so that we might better help others know and be transformed by the mind-blowing God who’s introduced himself in the person of Jesus.
Prior to training in London we were based in Cheltenham, England, where we were particularly involved in supporting ‘millenials’ in our church family, including university students. Wind the clock back again, and Zoe & I first met whilst both partaking in an internship at a city-centre church in London.
Thanks for stopping by – wherever you’re coming from I value your input, comment and feedback. Part of the point in writing publicly is to start a conversation, a conversation that includes critiquing me – so, please get involved!