I’ve never known how bloggers were able to keep track of their ‘top posts’ in a given period. I’m not a tech geek and I don’t pay any attention to such things. But my brother Matt Smethurst sent this list over to me. So, for the first time I’m able to look as if I know how to blog! Thanks Matt!
Anyway, for anyone looking for yet another list for 2012, here’s the top posts in 2012 by page views.
10. “This Black Leader or That Black Leader?” (3,187)
8. “T4G Debrief: Where Were All the African-Americans?” (4,153)
7. “Two Black Churches: One True, One Not” (4,723)
5. “The Gospel According to Prometheus” (5,749)
4. “W. E. B. Dubois Would Not Vote in This Election” (6,550)
3. “11 Things I’m Thinking in the Wake of Recent Events” (9,112)
2. “The Puritans Are Not That Precious” (9,459)
1. “I’m Tired of Hearing ‘The Gospel’ (Warning: Mild Rant)” (12,837)
A few quick observations about the list.
First, what folks most read here weren’t necessarily the things I most cared about. For example, the post on “Prometheus” (#5) drew some comments and views, but for me it was just a movie. I really enjoyed writing about Propaganda’s album and song, “Precious Puritans” (#2), but I’m guessing even Prop would say that song is not the thing that should be uppermost in our hearts. For me, #9 and #6 were the things I cared about most from this list–the Lord’s death in our place and protecting the Lord’s church from moral failure.
Second, people still love controversy and apparently I wrote a number of pieces on controversial issues (#s 10, 8, 7, 4, 3, and 2). I’m not a controversialist. That is, I don’t like controversy for controversy’s sake and I don’t like starting drama. But, by God’s grace, I’m not afraid to step in where I think it may be warranted. The six posts I would rate “controversial” cluster around three issues: the election, ER2, and Propaganda’s song “Precious Puritans.” I expected posts on the presidential election and ER2 would draw some reaction since those were already heated issues when I joined in. But I was a little surprised that comments on a spoken word/hip hop song took off the way it did. Nice to know I can still be surprised by the blogosphere. Having said that, I really do hope 2013 is quieter on the controversy front. The trade-off between fewer page views and more peace would be welcome!
Third, apparently I’m not alone in hoping “the gospel” fad is waning! See #1.
Fourth, the shelf-life on most of this stuff is already expired. The election has passed. New albums have been released and are being critiqued. 2013 promises a lot of new conferences and opportunities for all kinds of folks to have opinions or be offended. Who even remembers why we were excited about Prometheus? The fevers we catch break and temperatures fall. That’s helpful to remember the next time we’re tempted to “dive in” or “mouth off” in the blogosphere. Chances are a few weeks later we’ll find that it wasn’t really the end of God’s kingdom, or a threat to the gospel, or the most urgent/critical/important issue of our time. We’ll have forgotten it in the course of the year or before the bubbly stops flowing on New Year’s night.
Finally, I’m thankful you all would read the blog and engage in so much discussion. In fact, these posts remind me of what perhaps is my favorite part of blogging–interacting with the comments when they come. I’m grateful for the many who leave thoughtful questions, passionate push-backs, and words of affirmation. I’m taught a lot about thinking, writing, responding, truth, and grace in these exchanges. Thanks to all who read and I pray the Lord makes His face to shine upon you each moment of 2013, should He tarry.