Once upon a time I had a blog that I visited nearly every day.
We did our thinking together, worked out something of what the mad dance of ministry as a curate might entail, tried to make sense of the glimpses of God we noticed along the way.
Then things changed.
I became an incumbent, no longer working in partnership with WonderfulVicar but in a new place, with different patterns of life and worship, different expectations of the clergy and more responsibilities than I had ever imagined.
Blogging took a back seat as I realised that thinking aloud might sometimes be unhelpful, even, occasionally, dangerous...
I did still glimpse God along the way – though perhaps not quite as often – but it seemed wiser to keep most of my daily doings to myself.
Busyness took over.
I was still at my computer more than I'd ever expected at vicar school, but much of my time was taken up with rotas, publicity, papers on this and responses to that...even a parish magazine.
Blogging felt like rather a luxury, as did time spent reading the blogs of others.
This made me sad for I love to write, and love still more the web of connections with friends far and wide that my blog wove for me.
But somehow, even when something was aching to be blogged, it rarely happened.
I've made so many false starts, so many declarations of an intention to return – and I guess I know that the days are gone when writing here seemed an essential element in my emerging ministry...but I can't bring myself to pull the plug and abandon the blog forever. I'm frustrated with myself, recognizing that it's far too easy to miss the God moments if I'm not sharing them with anyone...indeed, as an extrovert, experiences are never absolutely real unless they are shared...
Wonderful things are still happening. Terrible things are still happening. Often I find myself walking a tightrope between the two, not entirely sure of my destination until I arrive....finding joy, un-looked for, as I visit a funeral family...or disillusion and emptyness even as a community gathers to celebrate.
And I need to write of it somewhere because, it seems to me, part of the priestly calling is to keep on telling the story...the story of my communities, of the men, women and children with whom I'm travelling day by day....and the great God Story in which our lives are swept up. My calling, surely, is to build bridges from the one to the other...to journey with my eyes open so that I can try and point out to my fellow travelers the signs of God at work.
For the moment, this blog, neglected, almost forgotten, is still part of the process – a tool that encourages me to stay alert.
Clearly not a luxury, after all.