As mentioned earlier, I’ve been thinking recently about Marturo and what form that might take these days. In what might seem like an unrelated phenomena, this blog has gone through several name changes. To give you a quick rundown, when I first started blogging about more than just my random thoughts about life (i.e. my Myspace and prior to that my Xanga) I decided on using “Marturo” as the name of the blog.
This lasted more or less until late Spring 2010 when I switched to self-hosting and because I couldn’t take Marturo.com as a domain name, went with MetaMarturo. Reasons need not detain us, but using your imagination and the knowledge that “meta” means “beyond,” you should be able to piece together what that was all about.
After a couple of rough apologetic exchanges online, and because of the rising intensity of school in my last year at Dallas, I decided to pull back from the apologetic tone of the blog and rename it. I believe it was at that point I went with “Think Theologically” and switched the domain to its current address.
In other words, I originally had a pretty specific focus for the blog, and then didn’t necessarily widen it, but diluted it somewhat. Or at least you could say I took it from the concrete into abstraction (something you might have noticed I am pretty good at). Then later I would actually widen it with the brief period when this was called “Words With Nate.” If you remember my explanation it was something along the lines of allowing myself to just talk about whatever. This entailed more theologically thinking, but also the freedom to blog about my random thoughts about life (which basically was returning to the age of Myspace). In all of this I ramped up my blogging output, but really lost any kind of grasp on a focused niche in the blogging world.
Now that I’m no longer a seminary student and am looking for my place in the real world, I’ve had to think through what I’m really doing here and whether or not it’s worth continuing, and if so, why?
To be honest, I’m still working on the answers, but the more I think about it, the more I think I need to return to my roots. I’m probably going to change the name back to Marturo, but I need to write out a more thorough explanation first that will make its way into a permanent page on the blog you can access through the navigation bar.
In the meantime, one thing I realized made sense was to use the “Marturo” idea and name for the reading group that I mentioned starting. We’re a “collective” in the sense that we’re a group meeting together, and it is a “marturo” collective in the sense that our purpose together is to learn how best testify to what we believe. This involves learning not only how to defend and explain the faith, but also how to effectively critique faulty belief systems and theology. In a way then, the group or collective is focused on individual theological development. We are learning how to “think theologically” but that is only part of living out the lifestyle of a faithful witness of Christ.
Rather than broaden the concept of “think theologically,” I think returning to the Marturo name is completing it. We need to think Christianly, but we do more than thinking when we live out our faith. I am very cerebral and analytically oriented so intellectual activities are my strong suit, but hopefully not my only suit. I am hoping in the coming months and years to put to practice things I’ve learned throughout seminary and help build up the body of Christ through discipleship and mentoring. All of that includes more than just training in theological thinking and helping the process of renewing minds, but certainly can’t include less.
So, what does all this mean for you? It should hopefully lead to more focus in the content I put into the blog. There will still be a lots of book reviews, but I am moving away from traditional reviews to more interactive snapshots of books. I will continue to commentate on cultural issues, and may start discussing TV and movies more frequently. The bulk of the content will flow from the purpose of witnessing (Marturo in Greek = I testify) to the truth of the Christian worldview in creative and practical ways.
None of this constitutes a substantial change to the content. Overall, it should better orient the content around a holistic purpose as well as connect the blogging to an output in the real world via the Marturo Collective. Which, if you’re still interested in being part of the Collective, let me know. We’re just getting warmed up right now, but starting in full swing come January. And if you don’t happen to be in/around Orlando, still let me know and maybe you could just start up your own Collective in your neck of the woods. I’d love to branch out and see some Collectives started elsewhere, but need the right person on board to lead one effectively. If you think that’s you, then drop me a line!