I Need Your Help: Some Questions

March 26, 2007 — 8 Comments

Recently, I’ve been thinking about you, the readers. I want to assure you I am here. I am writing. I am growing in Christ. For those who’ve emailed me over the past few weeks about my semi-absence from the blogosphere with no explanation, I want to offer my deep gratitude. I also want to thank those who have noticed some change in the content of my posts during the winter. Hopefully my posts are coming back to what they were before and I will no longer have to force you to believe I am a real secret agent due to my sudden absences.

Today, I want to ask all of my readers some questions that can either be answered by email (click the comment button on the top of the page) or in the comment section below. The first is about the website.

In your opinion, what is Agent Tim Online’s mission?

Since I began this blog it was about one thing: looking at our culture and current events and evaluating them from a Christian teenager’s perspective. Is that what you are seeing? How can I do that better for you as a reader? All in all, the question is about why you read Agent Tim Online.

The second and third question is completely different, but I need to ask it of you because of a writing project I am involved in. First:

Is the blogosphere fading in popularity?

Is it going to die? Is it going to level off? Is it worth using any longer?

Secondly:

What books do you know of that specifically help young men and women grow in holiness? If you know of none, what would that type of book look like and what would it include?

Those may be somewhat “random” questions, yet in the next few weeks I believe they will all come together and you will finally be able to understand.

Tim Sweetman

Posts

Tim Sweetman is a young writer, blogger, and student who lives near our nation’s capital, Washington D.C. He has been much more widely known by his “code-name,” Agent Tim. This name also served as the name of his popular blog, which received over 750,000 visits between 2005 to 2007. In 2005, he quickly rose to become a leading teenage spokesperson and cultural critic within the booming blogosphere, taking on issues such as MySpace, alcohol, homeschooling, pride, racism, tolerance, and other topics relating to our culture today. His blog has come to the attention of people such as Albert Mohler, C.J. Mahaney, Alex and Brett Harris, and La Shawn Barber. Tim’s written work has appeared in Lifeway’s Living With Teenagers (February 2012), Lookout Magazine, FUSION Magazine, The Brink Online, The Old Schoolhouse Magazine, Virtue Magazine, Regenerate Our Culture Online Magazine, and on many other blogs and websites across the internet like Marry Well and the Lies Young Women Believe Blog. He has also been featured in WORLD Magazine, The Towers Magazine, and Maryland Newsline. He is scheduled to have an article appear in Veritas Magazine this December. Most recently, his work can be found on Focus on the Family’s Boundless Webzine. His personal interests include writing (surprise!) and sports, both watching and playing. He is a die-hard Washington Redskins fan.

8 responses to I Need Your Help: Some Questions

  1. “In your opinion, what is Agent Tim Online’s mission?”

    Well I’ll just quote from the Westminster Catechism here:

    “Q. What is the chief end of man?
    A. Man’s chief end is to glorify God, and to enjoy him forever.”

    So long as your aim is to glorify God, your blog can be used for whatever purpose you desire. People are interested in your thoughts and beliefs, even when they disagree with them… which explains why I am one of your regular readers! People want to hear your struggles, your ideas, your changes of mind.

    “Is the blogosphere fading in popularity?”

    It depends which part you’re talking about. The political wing of the blogosphere (both left and right wing) is more powerful than ever. The current problems with Attorney General Alberto Gonzales would never have occurred had not they been originally raised by a blogger.

    Christian-wise the blogosphere is also growing. Bloggers within the Southern Baptist Church are challenging their leadership to be more biblical and less cultural… and are being noticed.

    Since you’re a Christian and a political blogger, I think you still have a decent potential audience (as do I).

    Who are the people who read blogs?
    1) They are often bloggers themselves.
    2) They do not mind spending time in front of a computer.
    3) They are aware of places on the internet that they trust for reliable information.
    4) They have strong opinions on things.
    5) They don’t mind revealing their own lives on occasion.
    6) If they are Christian, then they have strong theological views.
    7) If they are Christian, then they have a higher level of biblical literacy than the average.

  2. With the first question, you are right on. I also have believed all along in “delivering the truth,” or looking at culture and current events and God’s Word and understanding the “mission” of truth. In the end, it’s all about glorifying God. I love the Westminster Catechism.

    With the second question, I agree completly, or at least partially. I agree that it is not “dying” but rather maturing. Not sure if that sums in up, but I think it might.

  3. I would say in short that your mission seems to be making others aware and sharing, often times “different” takes on political and spiritual issues. (I guess to put in other words what you said above, but this IS what I feel you do)And furthering HIS kingdom.

    Is the blogosphere dying? hmm… I don’t really think so. I see kids becoming bored with xangas and myspace, but after all, theres only so much entertainment from those. I think the blogoshpere has a lasting chance to continue on,(as long as our goal is NOT entertainment) and in agreement with the first commenter, especially in Christian circles. Its a way to stay connected and learn from each other when we may not have that kind of encouragment where we live.

    Books I would recommend? At the top of the list it would have to be- ‘Don’t Waste Your Life’ by John Piper. Anything by Elizabeth Elliot, but especially ‘Passion and Purity’, and ‘God’s Guidance’ Also I would highly recommend making the effort to read Francis Shaeffer’s ‘True Spirituality’. The book changed my life. I know I don’t comment often, but I DO enjoy and reap truth from your writings.
    God bless you in your endeavors!

  4. The Reformed Pastor March 27, 2007 at 1:57 PM

    Hey Tim. It is Charlie Albright from the Boyce preview conference. Since I have not looked at your blog before I am going to skip the first question.

    “Is the blogosphere fading in popularity?”

    All I know is that I still profit greatly from it.

    “What books do you know of that specifically help young men and women grow in holiness?”

    I see that, Don’t Waste Your Life, is already taken. Anyway, I second that choice. Anything by John Piper I would recommend. I got his book, What Jesus Demands From The World, there at the college bookstore and am looking forward to diving into it. Some other books I would put into the hand of a teen: Living the Cross Centered Life, by C.J. Mahaney. Saved from What? by R.C. Sproul. I need to go back and reread R.C’s book, The Holiness of God. From what parts I remember, it is very good as well.

    Soli Deo Gloria
    Charlie Albright

  5. I’m just going to address questions 2 and 3, since I think #1 has already been pretty well covered.

    No, the blogosphere is not dying. People are suffering from information overload however, which means that more people read less blogs. I only read yours, for example, once a month, since once a day or even once a week is just too much for me. So I think that blogging has hit “the glass ceiling” so to speak. It isn’t novel or new anymore, so people are less excited about the form and more excited about the content. That’s why podcast are so popular right now, although I’m sure they will reach their leveling off point someday too!

    Regarding books on holiness, I can’t think of any off the top of my head. I guess you could say I’m in the market right now for some. I’ll definitely check out the ones mentioned by Mr. Albright.

  6. “In your opinion, what is Agent Tim Online’s mission?”

    The purpose of ATO should be to glorify God. I have always seen it as a place to read articles from a Christian Home School perspective.

    “Is the blogosphere fading in popularity?”

    I do not have a good grip on what is going on in the Blogosphere, as I only read 3 blogs. Therefore, I will only speak for myself and why I read. My view is as long as the people writing the blogs post good stuff, and I have time to read it, I will read it.

    “What books do you know of that specifically help young men and women grow in holiness? If you know of none, what would that type of book look like and what would it include?”

    Sorry, can’t help on this one, as I have not read any that stick out at me right now. The book would include the many scriptures that discuss Holiness, and would include application for today.

    Hope that helps,
    ~Sparky

  7. Books I recommend are The Pursuit of Holiness by Jerry Bridges, or Passion and Purity by Elizabeth Elliot as a couple people mentioned. Elliot will be the easier read. The Pursuit of God by A. W. Tozer when you are ready for the deeper stuff (in a meditative/ relational not philosophical/ theological way).

  8. It thrills me to see you asking for books on holiness! I join Robert in highly recommending any by A.W. Tozer, especially The Pursuit of God and That Incredible Christian. Other greats are any by Andrew Murray, especially Absolute Surrender and Holy in Christ. I can’t tell you the tremendous impact these works have had on the lives of my family and myself. “Be ye holy, as I am holy!”

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