Time to look back on the year just completed. I’ve had some pretty good posts for the last day of the year so far… in 2004 when the blog was barely a month old, there was Thoughts on raising daughters, which I thought offered some pretty good advice, and last year there was Church 2.0: Journeys Without Maps, to which even Andrew Jones has linked more than once.
I didn’t have a lot of posts from which to select hightlights at the close of 2004, but near the end of 2005 I posted my Top 5 of 2005, twice; the Subversive Year in Review, in which I extended a “top 5” post to link 20 posts in what I tried to pass off as a top-ten list. Hey, nobody called me on it ;^) Bearing all this in mind, I’m looking to see what my best work was last year. At the moment, I’m not using a stats module that will give me hit counts for individual posts (though I do know that this December, I reached the milestone of serving more than 200,000 pages in a single month), but even if I were, the more recent ones are selected against. Instead, this year I went through my monthly archives to pick out a sample listing of posts for each month of the past year to reflect what I was thinking and writing about at the time, and then went about creating a short-list of which of those I thought stood out more than the others. So here goes….
My nominees for “Top Five” (not in order) are:
- Oh be Careful Little Handsâ€¦ is a piece I did to illustrate the fact that “Catholic guilt” has nothing on “Evangelical guilt.” I snapped and posted an excellent companion image to this piece a bit later on, in Church Sign No. 1.
- In On this dayâ€¦ Reminiscing I reflect upon a valuable lesson my wife and I learned on our honeymoon, one which needs an occasional reminder.
- Emerging Kids & Communion: The Kidsâ€™ Table is a post about communion and kids… and how —unlike when I was a kid— the twain shall meet.
- I write to you fathersâ€¦ is a piece I did early in the year, and is particularly close to my heart.
- Church does not mean Sunday, and Vice-Versa is the title I gave to a post about what the essence of “church” is, and when and where it takes place.
A few additional posts of note from the past year include:
- With my post titled Of the Reading of Books I springboard off of some other people’s thoughts and talk about what scripture does and doesn’t offer us. Earlier in the year, I had already considered the question of scripture, specifically the translations thereof, with Containers, Culture, and Bible Translations.
- Two Years On and its’ postscript, Two Years On II offers some reflection on the fact that two years have passed since we left the organized church we’d known (and built) for the 16 years prior to that… and were in no hurry to find another church to join… detoxing from church is a theme in these ones.
- I offer some brief reflection on the life and funeral of Harry Lehotsky in An Ordinary Life: Well Done, Good and Faithful Servant.
- Easter for Simple Church Kids and Easter Mnemonics offers an idea for an Easter activity with younger kids — it’s worked well with ours over the past few years.
- One of the books I read this past year sparked a few posts, including To which tune do you dance? and Colonialism Revisited.
- Purged in the Plough: Yom Kippur, Sukkot, Thanksgiving & Harvest is a piece I did in October (when else) when I thought I had some kind of insight, but somehow I don’t think it really conveyed very well the connections I was trying to make. Oh well, you can’t win ’em all.
- Wineskins Rethunk is a relatively simple question that I thought more people would have been asking.
- The Church, the Activists, and the Homosexual Question reaches back to the beginning of 2006, where I opine on what I know little about… gay politics. And the response of the church, of course.
So for anyone who’s been following along, or who may have dipped into my list above about what I’ve been writing about this year, what would you say has been my best work this past year? Top three? External critique is always the most helpful….