We have cleaned and adapted this graphic for web use from a larger archive made available by J & R Lamb Studios.

We have cleaned and adapted this graphic for web use from a larger archive made available by J & R Lamb Studios.

We have cleaned and adapted this graphic for web use from a larger archive made available by J & R Lamb Studios.

We have cleaned and adapted this graphic for web use from a larger archive made available by J & R Lamb Studios.

This depends on whether or not you intend to expand your website into something that will be invested in for many years to come. Permanence and reputation are the hallmarks of those who intend to be working on the web for a lifetime. We have found that there are very few problems with journaling under a common blog domain like blogger.com We seem to rank fairly well inside of most large important search engines even though we do not own more than one of our domain addresses. This is good given the condition of our pocket books.

However, one word of caution to ministries that intend to sell merchandise. It is far better to own your own domain name under these conditions simply because most Christian search engines are biased against listing blogs without individual domain registrations. It would be better for a large ministry to own their own software or rent it from a reliable company and then attach a blog to it. Or link to a free blog from a visible tab inside of their web pages. In this way, you will not be "turned away at the door" so to speak, when your web master goes to list you under multiple Christian search engines. We do not understand this biased behavior on the part of Christian search engines but we do know that it is a very real problem.

  1. Allow web masters to handle all complaints and answer all e-mail. If there is something seriously wrong with your website, you won't hear about it until it's too late. Web masters care about job security too, they will hide their own mistakes from you if they can.
  2. Never reviewing the job effectiveness of staff employees who answer e-mail or take phone calls. These employees can directly sabotage ministry efforts apart from their employer's knowledge. Many older generations of employees will unwittingly assign jobs on the computer to those staff members that they can not regulate personally because of their own limited experience. There is an age gap between those who know the internet and those who know ministry. Employers must strive to hire trustworthy people for technology jobs that will drive missions on the internet with a positive attitude.
  3. Treating blogs or any other form of internet communication with apathy because it is over the internet. There are vast numbers of ordinary people moving across the internet at all times. Many more will read your blogs etc. than will often ever hear you preach.
  4. Not submitting your blogs to search engines.
  5. Not linking to a multitude of ministry resources just because you do not know the denomination of the individuals. This is not difficult to look up or make a phone call to find out.
  6. Not learning to express a variety of emotions in your literary endeavors. Your web visitors will want to see a healthy, well balanced, Christian personality in your sermons, posts and articles. Don't just post when you are angry, sad or sarcastic. Post about joy, laughter, love and forgiveness too!
  7. Pastors don't always try to anticipate their visitors needs. Sometimes the pastor will not include important things like a profession of faith or the basic doctrinal ideas that he may take for granted in himself. Treat your web traffic as though they have never even met Jesus.
  8. Pastors sometimes act on the internet in ways that they would never act in public. But the internet is public, never forget.
  9. Some pastors are all work and no fuss. But visitors are looking for family on the internet even if you are already perfectly content with your own. Leave space in your heart for seekers. God may bring someone to your blog that desperately wants to come home. A visitor may very well be a prodigal son, someone's lost daughter or a child's wandering parent.
  10. Not submitting to the ministry of other Christian workers on the internet. The internet is a giant web community and also a large interactive library system. Articles count for time and eternity here. If you post excellent ones, make them easy for others to find. Also remember that all of us who are for Jesus are employed by Him. Whether we are small and defenseless or gigantic and powerful. We who love and depend on the Savior are part of one large body. We need each other and we must learn to partner together to make this community a better place for everyone.
  11. Sometimes Christian authors or ministers are promoting their own books or outreach and forget to include materials that are free on their webpages. Remember the internet is about "draw" traffic. This means that setting up shop alone is not enough to keep visitors interested. People can feel as though all you really want from them is cash. Websites that promote products should also be environments for growth and exploration.
  12. New content is necessary for a successful internet ministry. The only way to avoid this is to have so much content that folks can't absorb everything on your webpages in one visit. However, a note of caution. New content is also a element that causes search engines to rank you. So, even if it is a small new entry that many visitors don't always see, that new content is very important.

We've listed the top ten, we are sure there are more.

1. Posting 15 times only.

2. Refusing to include links
3. Posting with type that can not be easily read
4. Posting with only a few lines of type
5. Posting to market products without human interest articles available on the blog as well
6. Foul language makes people think you can't think
7. Including jpgs. that are not adapted to internet browsers
8. Ignoring the importance of visual interest. Although people go to blogs to read, they still need a bit of visual interest to keep them entertained.
9. Blogging constantly about negative topics. Not everyone wants to be depressed with your problems.
10. Not taking any responsibility for the kinds of things you blog about, it is highly unprofessional

Readers seem to prefer black, grey, or navy type. I have read that visitors do not respond as positively to black pages. Too depressing, I suppose. And also I believe that pages should flatter clipart not detract from it. Sometimes white just seems to be the best choice for those bloggers who include many photographs in their posts. Play around with color. Most blog software will allow you to change the color of your web pages minutely if you should so desire. There are also many new free blog templates available on the web that you can upload onto your old blog to give it a bit of a face lift.

Well, you asked for it.

1. Many posts varied in length. 150 words, 250 words, 350 words

2. Listing your blog on search engines.
3. Foot traffic.
4. Internal linking
5. External linking
6. Popular topics of interest
7. Yearly updates and new formats
8. Consistent new content
9. Excellent organization of content
10. Continuing sagas, reasons for returning traffic
11. Daily feeds. Blogger.com has new gadgets on their software that promote this kind of content.
12. Links to other bloggers in specific
13. Materials that are specific to particular key words but more importantly key word phrases. Key words are "overused."


Here is a list of considerations when applying to other web masters for a link. Ask yourself the questions below first before approaching someone about a linking partnership.

1. Does the website have similar content?

2. Would the website owner consider you competition?
3. Does the website already carry corporate advertising? If so, they are probably under a contract with that specific company and can not oblige some requests even if they would like to.
4. Does your product or content compliment the product or content of the website you would like traffic from and vice versa?
5. Would the owners consider your content immoral or unethical?
6. Would visitors from their web pages be offended by your content?
7. Do there appear to be other links like your own on their website already?
8. How old is the site? Is it possible that it is abandoned?


Well, o.k. we added this question just to get our two cents in. Nobody ever asks us this question, we just wish they would. The reason for this? The question implicates volunteer performance. Most people need personal motivation to do this. Usually it's a very hungry, struggling author. However, if a web master is savvy, he can make excellent back links by these means. "Oh, really, and just what kind of articles would your staff be looking for, you might ask?" Our gallery is always looking for articles that introduce topical elements, personal witness, and unique information to our visitors. These articles are increasingly difficult to find on the internet. But if by chance you are willing to labor a little for a few precious legitimate links, our gallery is in search of these for our Christian Christmas Directory.

Visit the directory for yourself and see what you can come up with. We are not at all interested in public domain resources, recipes, or re-hashed encyclopedia type articles. We can write these ourselves. But we would like to link to articles about childhood memories, unusual gifts, and humorous original material involving the Christmas season. We especially would like to link to church web pages or Christian ministries that publish real articles about Christmas events, not ads for Christmas events that are dated after one year. These articles should be kept on your original website for as long as possible because we don't want to link to those of you who are only looking for temporary satisfaction. Keeping old articles such as these will actually boost your ranking inside of search engines so we feel no guilt in requesting them whatsoever. What's that I hear? You didn't know that this improves your ranking? Surprise, surprise, you may just be getting the hang of this internet thing by the time you finish reading our guide. Inter- net, enter-the-net, net-working, comprende? And if we send visitors to your ministry, you can share Jesus with them. (Wow, what a novel idea.)

Yes, most of the time. This is a smart idea if your church has a tight budget, limited resources, and you only intend to publish information for the congregation to access alone. Blogs are perfect for this type of use. Also blogs, are user friendly software. You don't need to rely upon the availability of a web designer in order to update your pages or remove them. You can do all of these functions yourself at little to no expense to your church. In fact, if you are a pastor or church secretary, we recommend that you become very familiar with blog software in your free time. This will give you an educational advantage should your church ever decide to conduct a ministry online. It will also help your congregation trim their budget expenses. One of the volunteer staff members here at our blog says that her church spends on average $5000 a year for it's web site. I've seen this web site myself and it is absolutely "no big deal." They could fall off the back side of a log and improve this baby. Blogs are pretty sweet these days. We are all in agreement on this one. Pastors and priests should run their own congregation's web pages or hire office help to run a free blog until they have well established ministries that demand the attention of a staff.

Yes sir. Blogging is a great way to include seekers in your ministry as well as educate young inexperienced believers. Blogging is also hip, and you want to move along with the times don't you? You've got to live in the world in order to reach it. We're not suggesting that you give into ungodly activity, we're just suggesting that you speak in love to the audience that God sets at your table. For some of you, this may very well be over the internet.

Blogging is also a reasonably inexpensive way for pastors to communicate with their congregation. Well, it's free. Need we say more?

Develop a ministry blog based upon your own private interests or profession. By these means you will be able to maintain interest in a long term project, will have a legitimate knowledge of the things you write about and will be less likely to bore others consequently. Write what you know and care about what you write!

Remember, the benefit of keeping a blog instead of other software, is that people are able to engage you in a conversation about your posts. Make sure that you are relatively competent in holding a conversation about the subjects you address in your posts. For instance, we wouldn't dream of blogging about politics because we know nothing about politics.

The answer to this question is T O P I C A L. Articles that are designed to address popular issues and key word phrases are by all means the most popular articles with web masters. However, professionals believe in doing this naturally so that readers don't get suspicious about the content. The articles must appear as though they "suit" the blog. If you have time, visit real newspapers and magazines run by professionals on the web. Take out a years membership with one of them and familiarize yourself with their marketing and writing tactics.

People search the web with key words or phrases most of the time. Seekers rarely search for Jesus intentionally. It is not likely that they will type in the web address of your church or ministry. I've been complaining about this for years now. But to no avail yet. I recently visited a marvelous Christian Broadcast website. They had the best content but I simply could not link to it. Every time I tried to link to an article from my blog the pages would shut down on me and shoot me straight back to a main search page on this site. I could go to the website to read articles there but I could not send any of my visitors to specific articles through my own pages. I literally would have to describe to my readers "how" to access material from this website. Who wants to take the time to read directions about "how" to access articles from a site you don't own or care to visit? My point is, I need to be able to direct traffic to excellent topical materials at the touch of a link. A seeker is not looking to flatter those who intimidate them or who they don't trust to possess unconditional love. Many people avoid Christianity because of negative experiences they have had with Christians in the past. They do not understand that it is Jesus who loves them. All they see is people. People who didn't love them in the past and that these were people somehow connected with a church. Seekers need to be introduced to Christ by key word phrases on the internet or they will be able to avoid finding Him altogether. Blogs are quite beneficial by these means if they are made public.

Is linking to those who do not link back to me important? Yes, practice some generosity, it is a virtue. "It's nice to be nice." Keep all of your links sorted by topic or inside of the context of a article. This also will give you better ranking on the web.

Our answer to this question largely depends upon how many posts your blog already has and what type of content is in your blog to begin with.

If you have a relatively medium sized blog of 65 to 100 posts, we recommend you update the blog within every 14 to 24 days. If your blog is over 300 posts, once a month is sufficient enough of an update. The fewer number of posts you have the more frequently you should make updates. Of course, none of this advice is necessary if you are keeping a blog for yourself, friends and family. Blogs are extremely personal for the majority of people and they need not conform to any demands of publishing as a rule for those of you blogging for personal reasons.

Our opinions about numbers of posts are based upon statistics for ministry blogs alone. The successful ministry blog is measured by many varied pieces of information accumulated together. The number of posts is only one factor to take into consideration but it can be a very important one. Each post on a ministry blog, if possible, should number approximately 150 words. Each post should average four outside links and two internal page links. For those of you who read our blogs, you may have noticed that we do not always do this. But when giving professional advice to others, we speak to the truth of what we know to be the best advice possible for page ranking. There are certainly other web masters out there who are better bloggers than us and we know that these bloggers are meticulous about what to include in their posts.

Abstract of "The Good Shepherd"
      This modern collage includes a combination of antique lace, rice papers, faux fur, metalic paints and oil paint. It has been exhibited twice and whenever it shows, little ones can't help but rub their hands over it. I love to see their enthusiasm but I'm afraid it won't hold up to it. 
      The sheep remind me of the time I spent at school in England. I love the countryside there, particularly in the Lake District. Although I am an American, England felt like home to me. I seemed to have a familiar connection to the land and people there. Many of my older relatives were from England and I guess the people reminded me of those family members. If you've ever gone to a place and felt as though you should have some agenda for being there, that's how I feel every time I step off a plane in that country.

Jesus and His Gospels (Good News) by Kathy Rice Grimm, oil pastels
In iconography the evangelists often appear in Evangelist portraits derived from classical tradition, and are also frequently represented by the following symbols, which originate from the four "living creatures" that draw the throne-chariot of God, the Merkabah, in the vision in the Book of Ezekiel (Chapter 1) reflected in the Book of Revelation (4.6-9ff), though neither source links the creatures to the Evangelists. They are normally, but not invariably, all shown with wings like angels. The meanings accruing to the symbols grew over centuries, and were fully expressed by Rabanus Maurus, who set out three layers of meaning for the beasts, as representing firstly the Evangelists, secondly the nature of Christ, and thirdly the virtues required of a Christian for salvation:
  • Matthew the Evangelist, the author of the first gospel account is symbolized by a winged man, or angel. Matthew's gospel starts with Jesus' genealogy from Abraham; it represents Jesus' Incarnation, and so Christ's human nature. This signifies that Christians should use their reason for salvation.
  • Mark the Evangelist, the author of the second gospel account is symbolized by a winged lion - a figure of courage and monarchy. Mark has John the Baptist preaching "like a lion roaring" at the beginning of his Gospel. It also represents Jesus' Resurrection (because lions were believed to sleep with open eyes, a comparison with Christ in the tomb), and Christ as king. This signifies that Christians should be courageous on the path of salvation.
  • Luke the Evangelist, the author of the third gospel account (and the Acts of the Apostles) is symbolized by a winged ox or bull - a figure of sacrifice, service and strength. Luke's account begins with the duties of Zacharias in the temple; it represents Jesus' sacrifice in His Passion and Crucifixion, as well as Christ being High priest (this also represents Mary's obedience). The ox signifies that Christians should be prepared to sacrifice themselves in following Christ.
  • John the Evangelist, the author of the fourth gospel account is symbolized by an eagle - a figure of the sky, and believed to be able to look straight into the sun. John starts with an eternal overview of Jesus the Logos and goes on to describe many things with a "higher" level than the other three (synoptic) gospels; it represents Jesus' Ascension, and Christ's divine nature. This represents that Christians should look on eternity without flinching as they journey towards their goal of union with God.
Each of the symbols is depicted with wings following the biblical sources first in Ezekiel 1-2, and in Revelation. The symbols are shown with, or in place of, the Evangelists in early medieval Gospel Books, and are the usual accompaniment to Christ in Majesty when portrayed during the same period, reflecting the vision in Revelations. They were presented as one of the most common motifs found on church portals and apses, as well as many other locations. When surrounding Christ, the figure of the man is usually at top left - above Christ's right hand, with the lion above Christ's left arm. Underneath the man is the ox and underneath the lion is the eagle. This both reflects the medieval idea of the order of "nobility" of nature of the beasts (man, lion, ox, eagle) and the text of Ezekiel 1.10. From the thirteenth century their use began to decline, as a new conception of Christ in Majesty, showing the wounds of the Passion, began to be used. Sometimes in Evangelist portraits they appear to dictate to the writing evangelist. All four evangelists are all Jesus's disiciples. (Wikipedia)