EDIT: To clarify, I'm not finished blogging forever. This isn't the end of Emily is Smiling. However, for the time being, I need a break.
This is all a big ramble and definitely breaking the unspoken rule of "Never Blog About Blogging," but if you read my blog regularly at all, I hope you'll take a moment to read.
I love to write. I always have. One of the things that I love to write about the most is my faith in Jesus, because it is the most important thing in my life. It is the most significant piece of my identity and a huge part of who I am. Let me reassure any readers that even when my posts on this blog consist of pictures from Instagram or lists of books that I'm reading, it isn't because I'm wearying of my faith. It's because I'm wearying of blogging.
This is in part because the world's response to blogging is also changing. In the year 2014, online audiences have been moving largely out of the blogging sphere to share their thoughts in other places. Posting comments on blogs is practically a thing of the past, which means conversations between bloggers and readers are almost nonexistent now. This isn't only happening to me. Nearly every blog on the Internet has taken a hit in both readership and, especially, comments in the last year or two.
While view-count isn't the sole reason why anyone should blog, it does play a part. Since I began blogging 5 years ago, I've considered my blog as both a journal and a ministry, a way to reach out to people who are looking for encouragement as they walk with Jesus. With less people taking the time to read blogs or join in conversation, the time I put into writing thoughtful blog posts is affected. I desire to put my effort into forms of ministry where people are receiving and giving back, where community can be found.
Also, the amount of time I choose to put into blogging these days is changing, regardless of who is reading. I've found ministries that have impacted my heart more in this season, like Deaf ministry. I'm a busy college student. My grandma was in the hospital for almost the entire month of December, which focused my thoughts and intentions recently more on family than on the Internet.
A day may come in the future where I sit down and re-shape Emily is Smiling into what it was before. I treasure some of the blog posts I've written. This place is forever special to me. But for right now, most of my attention is straying to other places and other ministries.
I'm not ready to give up this blog completely yet, so don't think I'm never going to post again after January 1, but I will be posting less. Many of my intimate thoughts about faith and about Jesus are being journaled right now instead of blogged, and sometimes I may share them on here, but quite often, I won't. The things I've blogged about in seasons past are still heavy on my heart, and I'm still working hard to implant them in my life, but Emily is Smiling is not a big priority for me in this moment. There is a season for everything, and my season of frequent blogging may be coming to a close. At least for now.
I'm still happy to talk with anyone who reads this blog, and I'll be back now and then to share both silly and serious things. But here's an update of what's going on in my life right now. I hope this long tangle of words makes some kind of sense.
I love you all,