{RD}A New World…

Just about three years ago, I entered a new world. At least, that’s what I remember thinking of it as… I started my first blog, then called “Lily of the Valley”. (Now it’s called “Adventures of the Mann Family”)

I remember wondering what would happen… what kind of impact I’d have, what sort of people I’d meet, what it would do to me.

Three years in, and… wow. What a lot has happened; things I never would’ve imagined.

I ended up finally deciding to join the Rebelution forums, after much thought and prayer. I’m not sure why it was such a huge decision for me… perhaps because I’d never joined a forum before, or perhaps because the sign up form is rather daunting if you take it seriously. At any rate, I joined. I remember looking around at the different groups–particularly the Attic moderators– and wondering if I’d ever be in one of those or if it was even possible to join.

Lo and behold, several months later, I found myself helping lead a cafe study on the book Don’t Waste Your Life. Through that I made quite a few new friends… and had the novel experience of being able to talk to young people who also *gasp* had a vision for their lives and a love for God.

And not too long after that, I was promoted to Editor, and from there, Attic Moderator. To my surprise, I was just about the only active Attic mod… which meant there was plenty to do. o.0 And, homeschooler style, I figured it out and did it, asking questions and making mistakes as I went. That was a big aspect of my online life for the first while…

There was also Holy Worlds: a forum just starting up. I was the only other team member at the time I joined… The Editor. I watched and helped, on and off, as HW grew up into an amazing, God-glorifying community of writers. At first, I wasn’t terribly excited about the forum… but now, when I tell people about it and about all the things God has done through it, I get so excited I become slightly short of breath. 😀

I decided to start another blog, this one on blogger… (Rejoice Always) and then have started numerous other blogs here and there.

I’ve been blessed to be a part of many different projects and such things… had plenty of chances to edit (yay!) for various people… so many things.

I’ve learned tons, grown tons, been blessed tons.

As to the people… ahem. 😀 The people have been wonderful, weird, inspiring, funny, helpful, convicting, supportive… crazy. 😀

A few people that I’ve known the longest and best would be:

Allison Whisler
Rebeka Fry
Andrea Powell
Hannah Lenover
Jay Lauser
Katie Daniels
Brendan Hanley
Sian Jones
Holly Hutcheson
Daniel Osborne

And there have been and are many others…

It’s been a very unique experience; having genuine friends–especially ones I’ve never met. It’s odd… a lot of people would suppose that online friendships would be among the more superficial and less helpful… but, at least in the circles I’ve been in, that hasn’t been the case. I am used to people in real life only being “sometimes friends”… not really sticking to me. (which, though it isn’t really an excuse, is part of the reason that I have on occasion seemed to abandon y’all… I’m just not used to people actually wanting to talk to me and be my friend. :P) But some of the people I’ve met on here… they stick. 😛 😀 God has really blessed me in this way… and I’m very thankful. Even when I don’t talk to you much… I’m so very grateful you’re there and think and pray for you often. 🙂

How has it changed me… oh, I don’t even know all how. 😛 There have been both positive and negative changes…

I’ve definitely improved my writing and typing skills… I’ve become more adept at explaining and expressing myself, both on and off the computer… I’ve become more open, in some ways… I’ve gained much useful experience in dealing with people and doing various computer things… I’ve come to know God more, through conversations I’ve had… I’ve learned a great deal more words… I’ve become more aware of the hurts of others… I’ve learned more about how to lead… I’ve become a better editor… many things about me have grown and changed for the good.

Some things, though… have not been so good. My family has seen less of me, which has caused hurts and other troubles. I’ve been distracted from my other projects and things I needed to do. I’ve wasted time on here…

I don’t know what I would’ve done differently, honestly… what’s past is past, and I will take the good and learn from the bad.

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