Posting here at oneClimbs.com for over 3 and a half years has led me to the conclusion that every Latter-day Saint should keep a blog of some kind. We talk about keeping journals and/or small plates, but I think the time has come to include keeping a blog among the recommendations.
I was first very apprehensive about starting a blog because I have a very poor command of the English language when it comes to writing. I’m not embarrassed to admit that I have no idea what a participle is and couldn’t explain the difference between a verb and an adverb; I just do my best to communicate what I feel is important. Very often, kind visitors to the site will correct my many grammar sins and typos and I’m very grateful for that.
I didn’t start a blog to impress people with my grammar. I started the blog because on December 15, 2007 while speaking at a graduation ceremony at BYU Hawaii, Elder Ballard said:
Now, to…all other faithful members of the Church, …may I ask that you join the conversation by participating on the Internet, particularly the New Media, to share the gospel and to explain in simple, clear terms the message of the Restoration. Most of you already know that if you have access to the Internet you can start a blog in minutes and begin sharing what you know to be true. You can download videos from Church and other appropriate sites, including Newsroom at LDS.org, and send them to your friends. You can write to media sites on the Internet that report on the Church, and voice your views as to the accuracy of the reports. This, of course, requires that you, all members of the Church, understand the basic, fundamental principles of the gospel.
We are living in a world saturated with all kinds of voices. Perhaps now, more than ever, we have a major responsibility as Latter-day Saints to define ourselves, instead of letting others define us.
I have found that the blog is useful in many ways. It’s a great place to store all of the research and things I find as I study. Putting it into an article form and making it public forces me to really make sure that I have done my due diligence of finding answers and presenting them in an accurate manner. I’ve always believed that you’ve only learned something when you have the ability to teach it to another.
The blog has become a repository for talks and lessons; I can give a lesson on almost any topic in a very short time period. The only downside to this is that you will be known at the person to call at the last minute (sometimes literally at the “last” minute) to substitute for a lesson or give a talk. I don’t really mind doing last minute lessons, I personally find it kind of exciting!
oneClimbs was not very impressive in the beginning. Your blog does not have to get a ton of traffic or every become very notable in the world; that’s not the point. Do it for you, your posterity and most importantly for the sake of truth and the glory of God. Do it your own way and change it from time to time if you feel so inclined. There are no rules, it is a blank canvas on which to explore.
Go for it, you will discover many great blessings in your journey and on your climb ;)
***UPDATE*** I forgot to include this but the Church published a short how-to on how to create a blog as well.