*Possible Brownout

Hello friends. Just a quick announcement. A typhoon (storm) is going to hit our province in a few hours time, which may result in power failure for a few or several days, maybe even weeks, depending on the resulting destruction. If a lengthy brownout occurs, I will surely be delayed yet again in my works for this blog. I hope this doesn’t happen.

Anyway, once everything is okay again, I’ll remove this announcement. But if you continue to see this after some days, then it means I’m not yet back online.

Notice: This post is not included in the CC license.

*Swordsman Library is under construction again

Hello friends. I just want to share some of my present works. I know that I’ve not been posting in my blogs for nearly two weeks now, and I just want to explain and show you why.

In my last announcement, I said that I’ve been working on my Google Sites, on my new blog, The Pastor Swordsman, and other related stuffs. That is true, but my work has expanded still, or rather, something that I’ve already been considering of doing is now sure.

About a year ago, I started a “fun project” here in WordPress.com — Swordsman Library — a blog/website where you can read the Bible and some Christian classics. However, for me, it was a serious project, because I’ve always wanted an online library of my own. I think that, for someone who loves books and who loves to read, having that kind of desire is only natural. Long story short, interruptions happened, and I set aside that project, but I’d done some significant work on its foundations.

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*The final leg in my present works

Hello friends. I’m sorry to announce this, but the deadline for my last essay that will complete my new founding documents is moved yet again. It is now November 15. At the most.

The reason for this delay is obvious to you: my new Google Sites which will serve as my Library, and my new blog, The Pastor Swordsman. Though the sites and blog themselves are nearly ready to use, having these new additions to the “Swordsman Network” mean that I would have to incorporate them into my foundations, especially my publishing workflow, make initial plans for their contents, and update my other sites and social media accounts about them. I would like to finish these works ASAP so that they won’t distract me anymore.

Like with Swordsman Community, which had also delayed me, these new additions were completely unexpected. But I believe that they are the final ones that God wants added to my blogging ministry (at least for this season) before I truly begin writing for Swordsman of the Word.

Thanks for all the patience, my friends! It means a lot to me.

Notice: This post is not included in the CC license.

*New Blog: The Pastor Swordsman™

Hello friends. I’ve got a new major blog. But… it’s in Blogger :)

With me already so busy and barely able to write, what am I doing with yet another blog? Yeah, I share exactly your sentiment. But this is the last puzzle piece (for now?) to fall into place regarding Swordsman of the Word, and so I’m not ignoring it.

As you know, I’m still establishing this ministry — and I’m in the very middle of writing my new foundation documents — and so the things I’m doing now are setting things in stone and will have far-reaching consequences. I do have doubts about this new blog, especially about my readiness to launch it, but the occasion demands that I announce it now, and so I have.

My new blog is called The Pastor Swordsman, and you can visit it here: [pastor.swordsmanoftheword.com]. There’s no content yet except for the About page.

Anyway, I’ll be sharing my posts there here in WordPress.com, in Swordsman Community, and so you’ll be updated.

Notice: This post is not included in the CC license.

*New Auxiliary Site: World English Bible

Hello friends. Just a quick announcement. Swordsman of the Word now has three auxiliary Google Sites. This is the first one: World English Bible. I’ll share the other two when I finish setting them up.

These sites have naturally grown from my works in Swordsman Community, where I feature Christian resources. I simply recognized my need for them, and so I acted. Also, I’ve been wanting for a long time to have an online library of my own (remember my fun project a year ago?), but the time is not yet right to pursue that, and so these auxiliary sites are the compromise.

Anyway, in my last announcement, I said that I’ll try to finish my third and last essay before the first half of October ends… but that is not possible now. I just have so many other things to do besides writing. And so my new deadline is the end of this month.

Notice: This post is not included in the CC license.

A Vocation That Is Like No Other

Creative Commons License I am an outsider. That’s how I’ve felt — in regards to my relation to the Church — most of my Christian life. Rejected by the world but loved by Jesus, I thought that my only chance of finding a place where I could truly belong is within the community of believers. After all, that’s how it’s supposed to be — an upside-down Kingdom, where the poor, the weak, the broken-hearted, the outcasts, the slaves, and the nobodies are given priority. But guess what? I’ve been rejected in the Church too. Many times.

Is it me? Am I just too different? Too weird? Too deep? Or maybe I’m just too talented. Too gifted. Do I arouse intense feelings of envy in others? Or maybe I’m just too committed to God. Too passionate. Too honest. And too unpredictable. Do I convict them of their lukewarmness? Of their sins?

God knows how long I’ve waited to find the right people… and God knows how much I’ve tried to belong. But it’s clear to me now that, no matter what I do, and no matter how much love I give, I might never be truly accepted in the Church. And that is because of my vocation itself, my calling. You see, my friends, God has ordained it that I, Arjay, would not stand among them — other believers — but to stand a bit separated from them. On the boundaries. At the gates.

I am a Swordsman of the Word, and I stand at the gates — between the Church and the world, and between them and God.

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*SC Resources (mailing list)

Hello friends. The devotionals and Bible readings I used to post in the Facebook Page of Swordsman Community are now available as emails subscription. You can read more about this here: About SC Resources.

The mailing list’s operation will begin on Monday, September 14. If you’d like to know what my posts are going to be like, please visit SC Resources on Facebook.

And so, this is now the last puzzle piece concerning Swordsman Community that has fallen into place….

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*Community Blog: Tumblr Version

Hello friends. Just letting you know. I went ahead and built another version of my Community Blog in Tumblr :)

And so I have now three places for the community: One here in WordPress.com, which I consider as the base camp, and one each in Facebook and Tumblr, which I consider only as outposts. You see, once I’ve made my post here in WordPress.com, it’s only a simple matter of reproducing them in Facebook and Tumblr, and so… why not? I only hope that I won’t be penalized (much) by search engines for this, but hey, I never cared about SEO anyway. What is important to me is having those community places where people can gather and learn….

You can visit the very fresh and shining Tumblr blog here: Swordsman Community

Note: There’s no new content yet, only the new blog.

Anyway, because it looked like I won’t be needing it anymore, I closed down my previous Tumblr, Arjay B. Araña. All my efforts in this platform will now be focused on this new blog.

Notice: This post is not included in the CC license.

*Community Blog, Schedule Update

Hello friends. As you’ve seen, I’ve been distracted again from my work in this main blog. I wasn’t able to write what I planned to write, and I also wasn’t able to finish updating my blog posts and pages.

True, as I have announced, I do struggle writing my second essay (and I will probably struggle too with my third one), but it’s also true that my work in my Facebook Page, Swordsman (of the Word) Community, has stolen much of my time and energy — a work that I have had serious doubts about even from the beginning. The fact is, and I’ve known this early on, Facebook is not a good place to build a community. Part of the problem is the platform itself, with its news distribution algorithm. (Unless my content is viral-material, which is impossible for the true gospel message, and unless I’m already popular to begin with, with lots of contacts and fans, I have no chance for a real audience.) Another problem is the ephemeral nature of posts made in social media in general. With all the effort and hours I’ve spent working, I didn’t feel that it was truly worth it, because my posts on the Page were not “tangible” enough.

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*[Patrons] Climbing High in Mt. Blessedness

This devotional reading, in a nutshell, talks about pursuing a much better life in Christ: To leave our present and unsatisfactory lives behind, and to start climbing — and to climb high — in God’s mountain of blessedness. In other words, it tries to convey hope and reassurance that tomorrow can be better for us. That is, if we get on our feet and begin climbing.

And the Word of God does confirm this, that through Jesus Christ we can have a much better life — a much blessed life. We can overcome our problems that would otherwise drive us to despair….

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