My Top 5 Blogs of 2016

Blogging is weird, because you can write something that isn’t widely read but that you think is really good. You can also write something that you aren’t all that proud of, and people read it and share it and otherwise trick you into thinking it was better than it actually was.

Just for funsies, I put together a short list of my five best (I think) blogs of 2016. I took an scientific approach*  to determine what made the list. Factors included:

  • How many people read it?
  • Actual decency of writing
  • Amount of times I messed up “there” “their” and “they’re” as well as “your” and “you’re” (something I do with embarrassing frequency)
  • Click-bait-y-ness vs. Actual Substance

I punched all the data into my formula and came up with these five.*

Take a trip down memory lane or read one you missed…




5. Being a Good Christian in a Bad World

Not too many people read this blog from way back in January. It was posted in the midst of the refugee crisis — a crisis that has not ended but we became distracted from since. It tackles the subject as a believer who takes the mandates of Scripture literally, and asks some tough questions (hopefully in a gentle, palatable way).

I think this blog about fear, faith, and how to be a good Christian in a bad world is one of the better and more important pieces from 2016, so for that reason it wins the #5 spot.

4. 4 Reasons Why You Should Never Go to Church Again

There is a lot of ongoing discussion about what the church is and whether or not we should be a part of it. This blog, among the most-read of 2016 on my page (partly because of some moderate click-bait-y-ness), tackles this topic with a little turn of phrase and, at least I think, some pretty good reasoning.

Good enough for #4.

3. 50 Groups/Individuals Jesus Says You Can Hate

By far my most-read blog not only of the year but also all-time (because of a LOT of click-bait-y-ness), what this blog lacked in word count it made up for in the simple point making department. A bunch of people agreed, so it got read a lot. Some other sites picked it up as well.

Still, it wasn’t that good, so it doesn’t win the contest. But it is #3.

2. Two Ears, One Mouth & a Big Heart: Some Election Follow-Up For Everyone

It was an election year, and while this blog got drowned out by a lot of other (READ: better) online reflection and wasn’t all that widely read, I do think it is really important for folks to consider the long term impact of our short term reactions. As much as we didn’t see the best our political system had to offer this year, we didn’t knock it out of the park as a general public either with our reactions and interactions.

For overall importance and theological soundness, this blog earned the number 2 spot.

1. We Should Not Be Afraid of Any of It

If one word captured 2016 better than the others, I’d pick fear. There was a lot of fear — attached to people of other religions, groups that hold differing views, and of political candidates we didn’t want to win. Fear has a way of strangling our hearts and minds. It turns loving, reasonable people into guarded, defensive souls.

By far, this blog was one of my least-read posts of the year, but I would argue it was more important than any of the others. If you missed it, read it now and give it a share. Using my unscientific, made-up formula,* I’m declaring it my best blog of 2016.



*Just to be clear, I didn’t use any data or formula. I just thought about it and picked five.