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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Blog (10/20/11)

TITLE: I Was Blogging Before Al Gore Invented the Internet!
By Tom Parsons
11/03/11


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Before Al Gore invented the Internet and global warming, I was blogging, five days a week for several years. I covered a wide range of topics in my blog, and even heard that someone came to the Lord as a result of it.

It was the 1980s, and personal computers and all the great gadgets we now have were still in an unknown future. But what we did have was radio. Oh, we had television, too, of course, but radio was big in the small Illinois town in which I lived at the time.

The church I pastored had a monthly radio broadcast on our local radio station, WLPO-AM. We paid for that time. But there was another station in town, owned by the same folks who owned WLPO. It was WAJK-FM.

One day I received a call from one of the officials at the radio station. As part of their license requirement, they carried a three-minute religious program each morning. But the source of the program they were then running was ending the broadcast. They decided to turn to a local source and asked me if I would do a five-day a week series of broadcasts to air at 5:20 am. Thoughts of getting out of bed early and driving to the station, which was just a couple of miles away, filled my mind. I thought that would be especially challenging on wintry northern Illinois mornings.

But, I was told, I could record the broadcasts, either at the studio or on my church’s equipment. I chose the latter. I usually recorded two weeks’ worth of broadcasts at a time and made just one trip to the station every two weeks to take the tape to them.

Of course, someone had to write those broadcasts. There was no one to do that except me, so I began my first blog. It really was a blog, of course. We just didn’t know that’s what it was. But every week I had to have five three-minute scripts, fifteen minutes of written material.

The station had given me no restrictions, other than the usual prohibitions against slandering local officials and sponsors. I couldn’t say the mayor was a scoundrel, or that Joe’s Plumbing Shop was cheating its customers by employing untrained workmen.

But I could talk about the Bible. I could talk about current events and relate the Bible to them. And I could talk about the saving grace of the Lord Jesus Christ.

A local McDonalds carried the WAJK-FM signal in its restaurant twenty-four hours a day. Every weekday morning at 5:20, my “blog” was broadcast to the customers at McDonalds. It was reported to me that a lady who had breakfast there regularly heard me and came to know Jesus as her Savior. I never had the privilege of meeting her, but I look forward to meeting her someday in Heaven.

I did that broadcast for about five years. That is about 1,300 three-minute programs, about 3,900 minutes. I discovered that one of the challenges of writing a blog five days a week is keeping it fresh and finding new material. Sometimes I would sit down to write and come up with an idea, only to remember that I had already done that. And, yes, I did sometimes rerun a favorite.

Now I have two blogs. Real blogs, not radio broadcasts. And I wonder how I kept my writing up for all those years on the radio, but now have a hard time writing one entry in one of my blogs per week, let alone five times a week. And, so far, at least, no one has indicated they found faith in Jesus Christ because of my blogs.


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Member Comments
Member Date
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 11/03/11
This is really interesting. I enjoyed reading it. I thought your strongest criteria was creativity. The start was also quite good. The weakest part might be flow. I stumbled over a few sentences. The very last line felt a little forced. I think you might be surprised to find out how many people you have touched with your poignant words. It's wonderful to see gadgets being used to glorify God.
Joanne Sher 11/03/11
I LOVE your title. It totally drew me in. Fascinating read. Enjoyed the way you linked the two type of "blogs" together.
Noel Mitaxa 11/03/11
Very enjoyable read. I'm not sure how on-topic it was, but then I'm not completely sure about blogging either. As a an occasional radio presenter and a weekly columnist - and being blessed with the ideal face for radio and a wonderful voice for writing - I congratulate you on your faithfulness in presenting so much material for a "faceless" audience.
Theresa Santy 11/04/11
What I enjoyed about this piece was the personal, relaxed nature of it. I felt like I was sitting accross from you sipping coffee. Actually, I was sitting accross from you sipping coffee while enjoying your story -- you just didn't know about it.

What I find fascinating about blogging is that those who don't get it, really don't get it, and those who do are drawn to it for reasons that go beyond their total understanding.
Danielle King 11/05/11
This was very interesting. I was drawn by the title and similar to the above comment,felt that you'd just bobbed round to my house for a chat.

You only know of the one soul that was led to Christ by your broacasts, but it was worth your effort for just that one person and there may be many more who you didn't hear about.
CD Swanson 11/09/11
Nice job- It was very interesting. Thank you. God Bless~
Edmond Ng 11/16/11
We may never know whether our blogs minister to people or win some souls, but we can be sure our effort in the Lord is never wasted. Thanks for sharing this well written piece. God bless.
Leola Ogle 11/17/11
Lovely! So many of us did do that, keeping journals and diaries,etc before blogging was ever around. Good job! God bless!