Today, April 1, 2016, I turn 13. Well, not me, exactly. But sort of. My blog turns 13, which means I am now officially a “screenager.” Kind of a long time online for somebody my (real) age. It means I’ve been blogging more than 20% of my entire lifespan! And by the massive word-count from all my writings and bloggings, it would certainly seem to be I’ve been sitting here doing nothing but writing for 13 years …
Anyway, I started blogging on April 1, 2003, mostly at the insistence of a few friends from the “emerging ministry” WabiSabi event in Austin, Texas, earlier that spring – primarily Andrew Jones, Shannon Hopkins, and Jessica Stricker. I purposely picked April Fool’s Day to launch, just because my life so frequently seems like it’s at the edge of silly. Or over the edge into the absurd, actually.
I’ve gone through different phases in the kinds of things I’ve written about. I suppose that’s normal for babybloghood. But ultimately, I’ve come to see my blog as an archive for my research and analysis on missional movements, spiritual abuse and recovery, and sustainable organizational development. I’m glad I’ve done this, and I intend to continue to process my experiences and observations online. In case interested, here are posts from blogging milestones past, which share some stats and summaries of interest:
As a value-added bonus to the day, here’s some new information: I thought I would explain where my handle of “brad/futuristguy” came from. When I started blogging, there were several other Brad Sargents with blogs or websites, and at least three or four Brad Sargents living in the greater San Francisco Bay Area where I lived. So, I started using the name “brad/futuristguy” to distinguish who I was among all the local and virtual B.S.es, and make it easier to search for and re-find comments I’d made on other peoples’ blogs. That’s because I processed a lot of my thoughts on other people’s blogs back then, but I didn’t always have my own computer and so would have to print out comments I wanted to save. And now you know.
Anyway, to celebrate the milestone, I asked my long-time friend Andrew Jones – one of those who cajoled me into cyberspace – if he would write a guest post to commemorate the moment. He said yes, and offered some very kind words that I much appreciate. Here they are, from yesterday on his TallSkinnyKiwi blog:
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by Andrew Jones
FuturistGuy, the blog of Brad Sargent, celebrates 13 years on the internet tomorrow. Brad is a prolific researcher and writer and its been my privilege to know him back in the 90’s when he wrote a book about our ministry in San Francisco called GodSpace 4 the New Edge.
The past ten years, on his own blog and popping up in the comments of others, Brad has been a tireless champion of abuse survivors, a forensic scientist offering autopsies of failed ministries and movements, a dedicated futurist offering a glimpse into what is coming up next.
I have been saying since 2001 that the Reformation will be blogged. If I am right, the commentary on our current reformation owes much to Brad Sargent. He has tracked the new movements, warned us about toxic systems, showed us where the purging is taking place and why.
Bono from U2 once said on stage, regarding their relationship with the entertainment industry, “We ate the machine, before the machine could eat us.” Brad Sargent helps us understand the machine, both the dangers of the evangelical industrial complex and the possibilities of new life, new growth, and a potential future for the people of God.
Brad, happy 13th blogiversary! We salute you!