Tuesday, June 21, 2005

What Do I Want To Say?

I know that a lot of you read my blog because you want to know more about Laurie. You want to feel connected to her, you want to know the person that she was, and you want to remember the influence she had on this world. I also know that a lot of you would probably quit reading my blog if I decided to stop writing about Laurie.

I have no plans to stop writing about Laurie anytime soon. However, there's something else I can't stop thinking about.

I was talking to Barb and Pete about this last night. More people are reading this blog than ever before, and that changes the way I approach the whole idea of blogging. Especially when I'm not writing about Laurie.

I've been asking myself two questions lately:

1) What do I want to say to the people who actually take the time to read this nonsense that spews out of my brain and onto the computer screen?

2) What can I write that will be compelling to the person who wasn't reading my blog before Laurie died?

Those two questions carry all sorts of "sub-questions" with them. But I can't stop thinking about them. And at the risk of sounding completely pretentious, I feel like I have a pretty unique opportunity to express my thoughts, my ideas, my frustrations, my joys, and my pains. I have the "ear" of a lot of people right now...so what the hell do I do with that?

I mean really. There are people who read my dumbass thoughts every day. I feel like I've been given more responsibility with this blog than ever before. And that thought alone just made me wet my pants.

Excuse me.


Blogger tory dolan said...

Drew... Hey, I kind of know what you're going through (only for a different reason) with more people reading your blog... Kelly and I had a conversation about it the other day that once the pressure is there - when you know more people (and especially people you don't know) are reading your blog, how do you deal? Do you write differently? Do you become a more protected writer or get your voice heard no matter what it's saying? Do you remain honest, or try to be more sophisticated? Do you write for a cause, or just because you want to? Tough questions to answer, and hard to know what direction to move in.

But know this... not that it matters a ton... I'll continue reading whether you write about Laurie, the Cubs, needed wisdom about buying a car, or how much your day absolutely sucked. So keep writing my friend, whatever way you choose to do it.

June 21, 2005 5:13 PM  
Anonymous Rebeka R. said...

Three reasons why I like reading Drew's blog:

1. Everything u expressed about Laurie. Learning more about the mystery that is Laurie.

2. The Cubs. As a new Cubs fan, it's really interesting to get that perspective from an "old" Cubs fanatic!

3. Dude, you're funny. That last paragraph, that was a gem.

June 22, 2005 1:28 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i think you're brave to face this darkness--and more than that, you're brave to face it while others are watching and reading. it speaks volumes about your character and strength drew. even if what you wrote wasn't "pretty" we'd still read it, because it's real and it's your heart whether it's about Laurie, the cubs or something totally random and hilarious. keep writing--

June 22, 2005 2:14 AM  
Anonymous fe said...

drew, i was reading your blog before laurie died.....and i admire you for sharing your feelings/thoughts and your heart even more since she's died.....keep writing, it's helping people out there more than you realize.

June 22, 2005 6:51 AM  
Blogger joney said...

I read it because you are a person going through life. The good the bad and the ugly. Because you are you and your view on the world is different than mine. I read because you are real and it is nice to feel a connection to another person just trying to make it through life. Sometimes my bad days are your better days and I feel better after I read a funny story you have posted. Some days my better days are not so good for you and it helps me remember to not take anything for granted.


June 22, 2005 8:36 PM  
Blogger thisdesertlife said...

I just wanted to say that isn't necessarily true - that we read because of Laurie. I found your blog through Laurie's site, but I find myself reading more and more because I want to know more about you, because you are a very cool guy. I enjoy hearing about your relationship with Laurie and smiling at your memories and praying for you when you're down. You know how I feel about the blog - that it's yours, and you shouldn't feel responsible to come across a certain way or worried about saying certain things for how they'll be perceived. If people don't like it or you, they can just stop reading it. This is your place, you know? Who are we to come in and tell you how to express yourself here?


June 22, 2005 8:37 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


In view of the present troubled state of world affairs, with wars and rumors of wars threatening the peace of the world, we, the representatives of the Mennonite Church, assembled in General Conference near Turner, Oregon, on August 25 and 26, 1937, and representing sixteen conferences in the United States and Canada, one in India and one in Argentina, S. A., do desire to set forth in the following statement our faith and convictions in the matter of peace and nonresistance as opposed to participation in war and military service, earnestly admonishing our membership to order their lives as becometh Christians in accord with these principles.

In doing so we do not establish a new doctrine among us, but rather give fresh expression to the age-old faith of the church which has been held precious by our forefathers from the time that the church was founded in Reformation times in Switzerland (1525) and in Holland (1533), at times even at the cost of despoiling of goods and exile from native land, and in some cases torture and death. On a number of former occasions since our settlement in America we have set forth our non resistant, peaceful faith in memorials to officers of state, such as the petition of 1775 to the colonial assembly of Pennsylvania, and in ad dresses to the President of the United States and to the Governor-General of Canada during and after the World War in 1915, 1917, and 1919, and at other times, thus testifying to our rulers and to our fellow citizens of our convictions. Since our position has been fully and authoritatively expressed in our confession of faith, known as "The Eighteen Articles," adopted in Dortrecht, Holland, in 1632 and confirmed at the first Mennonite Conference held in America in Germantown in 1725, reaffirmed in the declaration of the 1917 General Conference at Goshen, Indiana, and in the statement of faith adopted by the General Conference at Garden City, Missouri, in 1921, we do not consider it necessary at this time to set forth our position in detail, but rather merely to affirm in clear and unmistakable terms the main tenets of our peaceful and non resistant faith as they apply to present conditions.

Our Position on Peace and War

1. Our peace principles are rooted in Christ and His Word, and in His strength alone do we hope to live a life of peace and love toward all men.

2. As followers of Christ the Prince of Peace, we believe His Gospel to be a Gospel of Peace, requiring us as His disciples to be at peace with all men, to live a life of love and good will, even toward our enemies, and to renounce the use of force and violence in all forms as contrary to the spirit of our Master. These principles we derive from such Scripture teachings as: "Love your enemies"; "Do good to them that hate you"; "Resist not evil"; "My kingdom is not of this world: if my kingdom were of this world, then would my servants fight"; "Put up thy sword into its place; for all they that take the sword shall perish with the sword"; "Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves"; "If thine enemy hunger, feed him; if he thirst, give him drink: for in so doing thou shalt heap coals of fire on his head"; "Be not overcome of evil, but over come evil with good"; "The servant of the Lord must not strive; but be gentle to all men"; "The weapons of our warfare are not carnal"; "Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should fol low his steps, who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth; who . . . when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffered, he threatened not"; "Not rendering evil for evil, or railing for railing: but contrariwise blessing"; "If a man say I love God and hateth his brother, he is a liar . . . and this commandment have we from him, that he who loveth God love his brother also"; and other similar passages, as well as from the whole tenor of the Gospel.

3. Peace within the heart as well as toward others is a fruit of the Gospel. Therefore he who professes peace must at all times and in all relations with his fellow men live a life that is in harmony with the Gospel.

4. We believe that war is altogether contrary to the teaching and spirit of Christ and the Gospel, that therefore war is sin, as is all manner of carnal strife, that it is wrong in spirit and method as well as in purpose, and destructive in its results. Therefore, if we profess the principles of peace and nevertheless engage in warfare and strife we as Christians become guilty of sin and fall under the condemnation of Christ, the righteous Judge.

Our Position on Military Service

In the light of the above principles of Scripture we are constrained as followers of Christ to abstain from all forms of military service and all means of support of war, and must consider members who violate these principles as transgressors and out of fellowship with the church. Specifically our position entails the following commitments:

1. We can have no part in carnal warfare or conflict between nations, nor in strife between classes, groups, or individuals. We believe that this means that we cannot bear arms personally nor aid in any way those who do so, and that as a consequence we cannot accept service under the military arm of the government, whether direct or indirect, combatant or noncombatant, which ultimately involves participation in any operation aiding or abetting war and thus causes us to be responsible for the destruction of the life, health, and property of our fellow men.

2. On the same grounds consistency requires that we do not serve during wartime under civil organizations temporarily allied with the military in the prosecution of the war, such as the YMCA, the Red Cross, and similar organizations which, under military orders, become a part of the war system in effect, if not in method and spirit, however beneficial their peacetime activities may be.

3. We can have no part in the financing of war operations through the purchase of war bonds in any form or through voluntary contributions to any of the organizations or activities falling under the category described immediately above, unless such contributions are used for civilian relief or similar purposes.

4. We cannot knowingly participate in the manufacture of munitions and weapons of war either in peacetime or in wartime.

5. We can have no part in military training in schools and colleges, or in any other form of peacetime preparation for service as part of the war system.

6. We ought carefully to abstain from any agitation, propaganda, or activity that tends to promote ill will or hatred among nations which leads to war, but rather endeavor to foster good will and respect for all nations, peoples, and races, being careful to observe a spirit of sincere neutrality when cases of war and conflict arise,

7. We ought not to seek to make a profit out of war and wartime inflation, which would mean profiting from the shedding of the blood of our fellow men. If, however, during wartime, excess profits do come into our hands, such profits should be conscientiously devoted to charitable purposes, such as the bringing of relief to the needy, or the spreading of the Gospel of peace and love, and should not be applied to our own material benefit.

Our Willingness to Relieve Distress

According to the teaching and spirit of Christ and the Gospel we are to do good to all men. Hence we are willing at all times to aid in the relief of those who are in need, distress, or suffering, regardless of the danger in which we may be placed in bringing such relief, or of the cost which may be involved in the same. We are ready to render such service in time of war as well as in time of peace.

Our Attitude During Wartime

If our country becomes involved in war, we shall endeavor to continue to live a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty; avoid joining in the wartime hysteria of hatred, revenge, and retaliation; math fest a meek and submissive spirit, being obedient unto the laws and regulations of the government in all things, except in such cases where obedience to the government would cause us to violate the teachings of the Scriptures so that we could not maintain a clear conscience before God. Acts 5:29. We confess that our supreme allegiance is to God, and that we cannot violate this allegiance by any lesser loyalty, but rather must follow Christ in all things, no matter what it cost. We love and honor our country and desire to work constructively for its highest welfare as loyal and obedient citizens; at the same time we are constrained by the love of Christ to love the people of all lands and races and to do them good as opportunity affords rather than evil, and we believe that this duty is not abrogated by war. We realize that to take this position may mean misunderstanding and even contempt from our fellow men, as well as possible suffering, but we hope by the grace of God that we may be able to assume, as our forefathers did, the sacrifices and suffering which may attend the sincere practice of this way of life, without malice or ill will toward those who may differ with us.

If once again conscription should be established, we venture to express the hope that if service be required of us it may not be under the military arm of the government, and may be such that we can perform it without violating our conscience, and that we may thus be permitted to continue to enjoy that full liberty of religious faith and conscience which has been our privilege hitherto,

Resolution of Appreciation

We desire to express our appreciation for the endeavors of our governments, both in the United States and Canada, to promote peace and good will among nations, and to keep from war. In particular, do we desire to endorse the policy of neutrality and nonparticipation in disputes between other nations. We invoke the blessings of God upon the President of the United States and the Prime Minister of Canada as well as upon the heads of state in the various lands in which our missionaries are serving, in their difficult and arduous duties as chief executives, and pray that their endeavors toward peace may be crowned with success.

We cherish our native lands, the United States of America, and the Dominion of Canada, as homelands to which our forefathers fled for refuge in times of persecution in Europe, and we are deeply grateful for the full freedom of conscience and liberty of worship which has been our happy privilege ever since the days of William Penn and which is vouchsafed to us as well as to all our fellow citizens by the national constitutions and the constitutions of the several states and provinces. We pray that the blessings and guidance of a beneficent God may continue to rest upon our nations, their institutions and their peoples.

Adopting Resolution

We hereby adopt the above statement as representing our position on peace, war, and military service, and we instruct the Peace Problems Committee to bring this statement to the attention of the proper governmental authorities of the United States and Canada and other lands in which our missionaries are laboring. We would likewise suggest to each of our district conferences that they endorse this statement of position and bring it to the attention of every congregation and of all the members individually, in order that our people may be fully informed of our position and may be strengthened in conviction, that we may all continue in the' simple, peaceful, nonresistant faith of the Scripture as handed down to us by our forefathers of former times.
As a matter of practical application, we request our Peace Problems Committee, as representing the church in these problems, to carefully and prayerfully consider the problems which may arise in case our members become involved in conscription, giving particular attention to the proposed legislation on this matter which is now before congress or its committees.

June 22, 2005 10:43 PM  
Blogger dbrown said...

Just what we all needed, a 60,000 word essay that no one will ever read.

June 23, 2005 1:03 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i will admit that I found your blog after Laurie died, BUT, I am glad I found it. Regardless of what you write about, I will read. I have a blog on a different site and have a lot of readers. I can relate to how it feels when it comes to writing and thinking about those reading it. It is hard because you want to be open about whatever you are feeling, but then you worry if the reader actually really cares to read what you are saying. i know i don't make sense, but just know that i do understand.

i opened a blog on blogspot so i could be more open about my feelings and not worry about my readers. no on from my other site knows about my new blog.

continue to write what YOU want to write about and I will definately continue to read. :)

June 23, 2005 7:06 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Drew, NONE of your thought's are dumb! I read your blog because i love to hear and see what is going on in your life, and how your doing! Alot of your blogs have made me laugh, cry, think about life, but mostly, the way that Laurie was! I try every single day to live my life with the compassion, love, and tenderness that Laurie enveloped!! You have evry right to feel the way you do, but just know that everyone that read's your blog, obviousely love's the way in which you write your thought's! I Do!
Love, In Him, Dana (The Overnight)

June 23, 2005 4:07 PM  

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