Thursday, December 30, 2010

Hospitality On-line

Leadership. Servanthood. Consistency. Compassion. Encouragement. Inclusiveness.

Are these traits that describe me?  Do they describe my blog?  Chapter 3 of @StickyJesus has made me think, once again.

I loved the examples from the book.  Each provided an easy, hands-on way to go beyond interacting with our social media tools and begin caring for our on-line communities.

I can remember when I first started taking "this blogging" thing more seriously. It was the moment my other blog started getting comments from people I didn't know. The social worker/hospice/palliative care on-line communities are alive and well and definitely shaped the direction of my professional blog.  I started emailing with some of these professionals, asking questions, offering advice.  It was a beautiful, wonderful thing.  Even HopefulLeigh is forming its own community.  I love the people that take time to visit here and comment a response. I marvel that my words make people think or encourage them or turn them on to good music.

I remember how it felt the first time a blogger responded to one of my comments on their blog or emailed me a more personal response.  A feeling that I was worth noticing and receiving a response. I know not everyone has time to do that so it is all the more appreciated when it happens.  It's led me to try to respond to my comments, either directly here or with an email if the individual's email is linked with blogger.

I remember sharing about my dad's illness earlier this month and being overwhelmed by the response on Facebook, Twitter, and the comments here.  Some from friends, some from blogger friends, and some from strangers.  People prayed for my dad without ever having met him and rejoiced when we learned it likely isn't cancer.  It is an interesting bloggy world we live in and it is interesting how such strong connections are formed through words on a computer screen.

I am known for my hostessing and entertaining abilities.  I love to cook and serve, help people form connections, and ensure that everyone is having a good time.  What chapter 3 made me realize is that I can also offer hospitality on my blog. No, I can't serve you any baked brie or offer you a cup of tea.  However, I can try to foster community, encourage conversation, and pray for my readers wherever I am or they may be. 

I can be the hands and feet of Christ through my writing.  I can be more intentional about my recommendations and what I share.  I can look for opportunities to tangibly care for others. 

I'm sure I'm not the only one that feels such freedom in these opportunities.

This post was written for the @StickyJesus Read-Along hosted by Michelle Sarabia.Disclosure: Amazon Affiliate links included in this post. If you click through to Amazon from HopefulLeigh, any purchase you make supports this site.

3 comments:

  1. While I would love to sit down with a cup of coffee with you (i'm not a tea drinker) I'm glad the Lord put our paths together and we can fellowship through the bloggy world!

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  2. I love this! I also think the blog world and the communities and relationships formed are amazing! Hope you had a nice Christmas.

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  3. Good words, Leigh! I'd stop by for tea anytime.

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