This Is My 100th Blog Post (And Confetti Explodes)!

According to my WordPress site stats this is my 100th published post for “Chief of the Least.” (Thank you, Thank you, no really stop applauding maniacally) My first published post was October 22nd of last year. In under 11 months, I’ve averaged a little less than 10 posts per month. I’ll take this awe-inspiring crowning achievement to briefly reminisce over a few posts and nuggets of knowledge I have gained in this process.

Here are the top 3 most viewed posts of all time on the site:

1. “Rob Bell: Does Universalism Really Win in The End?”

2. “White Guys Who Listen To Christian Rap and The Girl Named World”

3. “Call of Duty: A Call To Biblical Manhood”

Here are the top 3 most commented on posts all time (admittedly, many of these comments are mine!):

1. “Sister Wives: Neither Nice Nor Biblical”

2. “‘Tis The VBS Season: No Sinner’s Prayer Required”

3. “How Christ Came To Me: And How I Ended Up In The Back Of A Cop Car”

Staying somewhat consistent and disciplined with writing has been a challenging and edifying experience. Here is what I have learned about maintaining a personal blog the past year:

1. Don’t count the stats

I know in the previous section I did just this. But I am talking about obsessive exhaustive bookkeeper type tabs on your blog stats. You will not miss much in a day or even a week if you fail to visit your site stats, especially if you are just getting started. Frequently checking your stats could be the vehicle that steers you away from maintaining your blog. Here’s why: You just spent dozens of minutes ; ) of your valuable time creating a post that will cure cancer and bequeath world happiness…and only two people have viewed it since Tuesday. Bummer.

Internet traffic doesn’t just magically appear in droves until you start putting up consistent content over a period of time. Maintain a blog for the enjoyment of it, not to get a platform or get a message “out there.”

2. Be consistent

You will never compete with Tim Challies, so don’t try. If you attempt to you will get burned out. Though my blogging activity has waned as of recent, during the height of my production last summer I was still only averaging 2.68723 posts a week. Consistency is a key to earn faithful readers. Frequent blog visitors should be able to visit your site 2-3 times a month and every time see some fresh content.

You’re not in a race with those brilliant and prolific Pyromaniacs, you’re on your own journey at your own disciplined pace.

3. Be concise

I’m a sucker for flowery rhetoric. But a blog format is not the place to wax poetically. Internet visitors usually just scan blogs for useful content and rarely ever sit and chew on what they have read. I’m guilty of writing a whole paragraph what could be said in one simple sentence. I rarely get diarrhea of the mouth but I frequently get diarrhea of the type-pad. A post much more over 500 words will induce ADD fuzziness in the most committed readers.

Targeted simplicity is the key to communicating any given message. Ernest Hemingway would have been a successful blogger.

4. Be uniquely personal

If people want to dig deep into lofty theological musings or political commentary they already have their trusted sources. John Piper and John MacArthur have the reformed theological market on lock and will represent biblical Christianity much more succinctly and profoundly than I every could. Don’t get into the habit of saying what an ESV Commentary has already said. Readers would much rather know what your uniquely personal take is on family, culture, church and life in general.

How does God relate to me at home when the babies are screaming, the wife is flustered and I have a million papers to grade for school? Inquiring readers would rather know that than some regurgitated thoughts I have borrowed about the hypostatic union.

Visitors want a refreshing read with real unique perspectives on the actualities of life, not a theological treatise from a random internet source. If you are having a good day, bad day, or blah day let your readers know.

Those main four points are what I have gleaned thus far from my rookie blog experience.

I’m looking forward to what God has in store for this blog in the next year. If you are a frequent lurker, reader, or commenter, thank you for letting “Chief of the Least” be a small part of your life!

Bryan Daniels

“Call of Duty”: A Call to Biblical Manhood

The tension was palpable. But after months of anticipation the much awaited arrival of the ultimate video game has been officially given unto us.

“Call of Duty: Black Ops” is this generations “new Nintendo.”

Call of Duty: Black Ops is a first-person shooter video game developed by Treyarch, published by Activision and released worldwide on November 9, 2010 for Microsoft Windows, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Wii, and Nintendo DS consoles.

Yes, Nazi Zombies....

Black Ops gives every boy and man-child an opportunity to team up with fellow gamers to fight Cuban armies, communist gulags, and…..Nazi zombies?!

In past generations, young American men spared life and limb to fight actual enemies for their God, family and country. Now young American men spare a meaningful life and relationships to fight virtual enemies in the comfort of their bean bag chair. The disparity is slightly sickening.

Young men are looking for something to fight for. What they have chosen is Bill Gates dream, not God’s. One of the high-school seniors in my class waited outside of a store for hours with many other Call of Duty-ers to be the first to purchase “Black Ops” when the clock hit 12:00 AM on Tuesday. He immediately went home and started playing it until he had to go to school that same morning. He went to school and when he got out he went directly back to playing the game until 12:00 the following morning. On Wednesday morning, he looked like a “Nazi zombie” (minus the ‘Nazi’ I guess) in my math class.

Gaming addictions are some of the worst kind.

Middle and high schoolers are not the only victims of this gaming disease. Unfortunately, a large segment of twenty something college and career aged men have contracted it. They should be finding a career, getting married, rearing children, and at the very least moving out of their parent’s house. Instead they are settling for notoriety of their “thumb skills” and ”E-hard” status.

A whole generation of young women are still waiting for their respective “Peter Pans” to awaken from their self induced Never-land’s.

I am certainly not innocent. Though I haven’t been legitimately addicted to a game since PlayStation’s (the first one) NCAA Football 2000, the fleeting attraction of technology still has its grip on me. I spend too much time watching ESPN and perusing meaningless Websites, instead of actually pursuing the knowledge of God, leading my family, and loving people.

Young men need something to fight for. Young men are even created for something to fight for. And though there is not the same type of “World War global crisis” the men of old were beckoned for, there is a very real war and real global crisis contemporary men have been called to.

There is a spiritual war calling for the enlistment of real men.

In Isaiah 32:2 we see a captivating picture of biblical manhood. It states that the good man will be “like a shelter from the wind and a refuge from the storm, like streams of water in the desert and the shadow of a great rock in a thirsty land.” The verse shows the man as protector and guardian, as life-giver and as the firm rock for others. Married and single men are made to defend and protect their family, friends, church, community and country from spiritual attacks of all sorts.

Real men don’t fight fake zombies, they cast down real strongholds that stand between them and the knowledge of Christ (2 Cor. 10:3-5).

This is done with the deadly gospel weapons of Scripture and prayer (Eph 6). This is done by cultivating real fellowship that edifies, challenges, and encourages fellow warriors in the battle of life. What is at stake is not a high score or temporary bragging rights, but the fame of God’s holy name and an eternity in heaven and hell (Malachi 1:11).

I am not calling for a moratorium on fun, or a misguided form of fundamentalist separatism. Maybe just an honest evaluation of our values will do. Maybe we all need to take a heart inventory of what (or who) we truly love, and what we truly desire to pour our time and resources into.

Maybe what is gripping us is also what is killing us.

Maybe there really is something to fight for. Maybe it isn’t a “Call of Duty” but a call for the restoration of Biblical Manhood.

Bryan Daniels

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