This is who I am now – a Christian blogger, a webmaster, and a Linux user.
It’s been a year since I decided to leave WordPress.com, and to learn how to self-host my own websites. It’s also been a year (well, more than a year) since I started actively leaving behind the pains and burdens of the past several years. Rejected by my church and denied the support for ministry I had rightfully earned, I have set out to independently establish the things that God wants me to do – and all without resources, except the little that I have and what God provides.
And as expected, it’s been a difficult process. So many new things to learn, and so much suffering to endure. For what did I know about making and self-hosting websites, except using WordPress at the basic level? And how do I get over the bitterness of having my dreams destroyed by the very people I’ve trusted with my life?
One thing is for sure. I’ve been changed so much by these things. And for the better. Because God has been in control all this time, and as loudly and boldly declared in his Word, he is able to bring good things out of the bad. I’ve become a real webmaster, and I’ve become a fighter.
After years of depending on Blogger and WordPress.com for blogging, and after a long and hard search for the right CMS for me, I’m now publishing this post in my own self-hosted Textpattern website. This CMS epitomizes reliability and stability, the overarching criteria I’m looking for.
After years of dreaming about it, and to further develop my computer skills now that I’m a webmaster, I’ve finally migrated from Windows to Debian Linux. Like Textpattern CMS, this computer operating system also epitomizes reliability and stability. I can easily envision it supporting my works for God for decades to come.
And after many years of struggle (years of preparation and discovery), and though there are still a lot of things to do and to prepare for, the path of my works for God is clear: I’m a Christian blogger and freelance writer, also a web publisher of Christian literature, and right now I’m studying and readying for my upcoming ministry at OnlineBibles.net. This is a domain I own, and on it will rise a group of Bible-study and Christian-resource websites. It will also be the new home of Swordsman of the Word, my personal blogging ministry. Yes, ONLINEBIBLES.NET is the culmination of my years of preparation, and it will be the justification of my obedience to God.
As Paul said of the apostles:
But we have this treasure [the gospel] in clay vessels, that the exceeding greatness of the power may be of God and not from ourselves. We are pressed on every side, yet not crushed; perplexed, yet not to despair; pursued, yet not forsaken; struck down, yet not destroyed; always carrying in the body the putting to death of the Lord Jesus, that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body. – 2 Corinthians 4:7-10 WEB
I’m using Textpattern for my personal blog here at
www.arjayarana.xyz. I may also use it for two of my future websites for OnlineBibles.net, including the primary one at
www.onlinebibles.net. Or I might trying using Drupal instead, which is an enterprise-level CMS that I am yet to know how to use, but it will give me all the features I need. Learning Drupal though will be difficult, since its primary audience are web developers. But the important thing is that, if I choose to, I can learn Drupal. I’m confident of that.
And this confidence is hard-worn – just like the fact that I’ve migrated to Debian and I’m confident that I can become proficient at it. I remember surfing the internet many years ago, overwhelmed by Linux and computer terminologies. As a Windows user, reared in easy-to-use GUIs and shielded from the computer’s internals, I had a very tough time adjusting.
This is not my first time using Linux. I had dabbled several times over the years, discovering a few distros and setting my eyes finally on Debian. But this is the first time I’ve really committed to using Linux as my primary OS, because the time is finally right. As I’ve said above, the path of my works for God is clear, and I need a reliable OS for those works. Debian is that OS.
What I’m saying in all these is this: I’ve broken down the initial high barriers to my computing needs. I’m not yet an expert, but I’m not a beginner either, and I can now do important computer works – like creating and managing my own websites. The same can be said about my spiritual life: Yes, I still have a lot to learn as a writer and as a minister of the Word, but I’m also not a wide-eyed, untested novice. I have walked with God for a long time, and I have suffered for a long time, and that makes me qualified, even if not yet an expert – and I can now do important works for him.
Expertise will come. In time. In my computing skills. In my writing skills. And in my knowledge of, and practice of, the Word of God.