Sunday, September 5, 2010

Emerging into Hipsters

I just read an interesting article in Christianity Today on Christian Hipsters. It seems as if the emerging church movement has not just faded away but has morphed into an even more anti-establishment version of itself. The author of the article, Brett McCracken, says it this way:

"The latest incarnation of a decades-long collision of "cool" and "Christianity," hipster Christianity is in large part a rebellion against the very subculture that birthed it. It's a rebellion against old-school evangelicalism and its fuddy-duddy legalism, apathy about the arts, and pitiful lack of concern for social justice. It's also a rebellion against George W. Bush—style Christianity: American flags in churches, the Ten Commandments in courtrooms, and evangelical leaders who get too involved in conservative politics."

First the positives: Hipster Christianity is more committed to social action and real involvement in community than most churches. They challenge the shallowness of some of the mainstream Evangelicalism that is more committed to conservative values than in following Jesus. They long "for a simpler, back-to-basics faith that was more about serving the poor than serving Starbucks in the church vestibule." They are embracing ancient liturgies and incorporating hymns into their worship. They strive for authenticity and mobilize their members to live out their faith.

From the article:
"One of hipsterdom's positive values is its concern for justice—whether it be sweatshops or sex trafficking, water wells or finance reform. Hipsters almost always champion the cause of the underdog (immigrants, the poor, minorities) over those with power and privilege. Christians would be hard-pressed to find any Scripture passages that suggest Jesus didn't do the same. Many Christians, sadly, have moved away from social justice and fighting for the well-being of the downtrodden, but Christian hipsters are leading the way back."

But on the other hand hipsters living out their faith doesn't always include some of the more traditional commitments to holiness and righteousness that accompanied those who followed the ancient liturgies. As such "Some hipster Christianity is as indistinguishable from its secular hipster counterpart as yesterday's megachurch Christianity was indistinguishable from secular soccer-mom suburbia." Hipster culture is defined in some ways by its countercultural ethos: ie we are against anything currently embraced by mainstream culture. It constantly strives to follow and embrace that which is new and not yet discovered by the mainstream and once this new thing is embraced by too many people they move on to the next thing after that. You only discover these things virally - by being deeply connected to cultural influences by cultural social networking media. So if your mother begins wearing the style of jeans that were cool last week something else needs to become cool this week. The current stylistic trademarks are: skinny jeans, cotton spandex leggings, fixed-gear bikes, vintage flannel, fake eyeglasses, a keffiyeh, an American Apparel V-neck shirt, Pabst Blue Ribbon beer and Parliament cigarettes - but those things might already be out of style.

As one writer puts it:
Hipsterdom is the first "counterculture" to be born under the advertising industry’s microscope, leaving it open to constant manipulation but also forcing its participants to continually shift their interests and affiliations. Less a subculture, the hipster is a consumer group – using their capital to purchase empty authenticity and rebellion. But the moment a trend, band, sound, style or feeling gains too much exposure, it is suddenly looked upon with disdain. Hipsters cannot afford to maintain any cultural loyalties or affiliations for fear they will lose relevance.

"In order to be a hipster, one must be a rebel. Despite the fact that (ironically) hipster culture usually operates within and is sustained by the very structures it opposes, hipsterdom's raison d'ĂȘtre is countercultural, boundary-pushing rebellion. As such, hipster existence is frequently rife with vices. If hipsters cannot completely overthrow the structures that bind them, they can at least destabilize them by engaging in hedonistic behavior: smoking, drinking, cursing, sexual experimentation, and so on. It's about freedom, partying, and transgression—not in the Jersey Shore, frat-party sense (unless ironically), but in the "bourbon cask ales taste good and I don't care if I get drunk" sense. Hipsters ridicule bourgeois concerns such as "cigarettes cause cancer" and "drinking should be done in moderation," opting instead to recklessly embrace such vices with "why not?" abandon. If you aren't willing to engage in at least some of this "subversive hedonism," you will have a hard time maintaining any hipster credibility."

Adbusters website is a key communication vehicle for hipster culture. A recent article by describes the hipster culture as one without a whole lot of redeeming values.

"An artificial appropriation of different styles from different eras, the hipster represents the end of Western civilization – a culture lost in the superficiality of its past and unable to create any new meaning. Not only is it unsustainable, it is suicidal. While previous youth movements have challenged the dysfunction and decadence of their elders, today we have the "hipster" – a youth subculture that mirrors the doomed shallowness of mainstream society."

But what does this mean for Christian hipsters? When, in the name of rebellion and "freedom in Christ," Christian hipsters begin to look and act just like their secular hipster counterparts, drinking and smoking all the same things, shouldn't we raise a red flag?

Good Question.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Don't Mess With the Zohar

Someone asked me about the Old Testament high priest ministering in the temple and having a rope tied around his ankle to drag him out of the Holy of Holies in case he had dropped dead because of his sin. It turns out that the story is somewhat apocryphal (kind of like a Christian urban legend). There are a number of sources that have helped perpetuate this legend – particularly the NIV Study Bible note on Exodus 28:35.

34 The gold bells and the pomegranates are to alternate around the hem of the robe. 35 Aaron must wear it when he ministers. The sound of the bells will be heard when he enters the Holy Place before the LORD and when he comes out, so that he will not die.

The rope is not mentioned anywhere in Scripture or other ancient Jewish literature. The earliest reference to this tradition seems to be a 13th century A.D. Jewish work, the Zohar (don’t mess with the Zohar) where he states:
A knot of rope of gold hangs from his leg, from fear perhaps he would die in the holy of holies, and they would need to pull him out with this rope.

The Zohar is not necessarily a reliable source. In fact, wearing such a rope would probably be a violation of Leviticus 16:3-4, which gives clear directions on what the high priest is to wear on Yom Kippur:

But in this way Aaron shall come into the Holy Place: with a bull from the herd for a sin offering and a ram for a burnt offering. 4 He shall put on the holy linen coat and shall have the linen undergarment on his body, and he shall tie the linen sash around his waist, and wear the linen turban; these are the holy garments. He shall bathe his body in water and then put them on. (ESV)

It’s doubtful that many of the NIV scholars had been reading the Zohar, so I suspect that they get it from some Protestant commentary, such as John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible (An Exposition of the New Testament, 3 vols., 1746–8, and An Exposition of the Old Testament, 6 vols., 1748–63). John Gill lived from November 23, 1697 to October 14, 1771, and the anecdote appears in his remarks on Hebrews 9:7:

Hebrews 9:7

Ver. 7 But into the second went the high priest alone, once every year,.... Though this is not expressed in so many words in Le 16:2 only it is said that "Aaron came not at all times into the holy place within the vail"; yet it is the constant and generally received sense of the Jewish writers, in agreement with the apostle here, that the high priest went into the holy of holies but once a year {q}, on the day of atonement, which was on the tenth of the month Tisri, and answers to part of September; not but that he went in more than once on that day, for he went in no less than four times {r}; the first time he went in to offer incense; the second time with the blood of the bullock, to sprinkle it; the third time with the blood of the goat; and the fourth time to bring out the censer {s}; and if he entered a fifth time, they say he was worthy of death; wherefore Philo the Jew {t} seems to be mistaken when he affirms that, if he went in three or four times on the same day, he suffered death, nor was there any pardon for him; and as it was but one day in a year he might enter, so when he did, no other man, either Israelite or priest, might go in along with him; he went in alone without any attendance:

the Jews say {u}, that a cord or thong was bound to the feet of the high priest when he went into the holy of holies, that if he died there, the rest might be able to draw him out; for it was not lawful for another priest to go in, no, not an high priest, none besides him on the day of atonement. Pausanias {w} makes mention of a temple of Minerva into which the priests entered once every year; which very likely was observed in imitation of this custom of the Jewish high priest; who in it was a type of Christ, and of his entrance into heaven, and of his constant and continued intercession there:

not without blood; for he went in with the blood of the bullock and the blood of the goat; which was typical of the blood of Christ, by which he entered in once into the holy place, into heaven, when he had obtained eternal redemption by it, Heb 9:12 which he offered for himself and for the errors of the people; the bullock was offered by the high priest for himself and his family; and the goat for the sins of the people of Israel, even all their iniquities, transgressions, and sins, Le 16:11, but Christ the antitype having no sin, had no need to offer for himself, only for the sins of the people; See Gill on "Heb 7:27".

{q} T. Hieros. Yoma, fol. 42. 4. & 43. 1. Bab. Pesachim, fol. 86. 1.
{r} Bemidbar Rabba, sect 7. fol. 188. 4. Maimon. Biath Hamikdash, c. 2. sect. 3. Moses Kotsensis Mitzvot Tora, pr. neg. 303.
{s} Maimon. & Bartenora in Misna Celim, c. 1. sect. 9.
{t} De Legatione ad Caium, p. 1035.
{u} Zohar in Lev. fol. 43. 3. & Imre Binah in ib. {w} Arcadica, sive l. 8. p. 531.

Thanks to The Gypsy Scholar, Christian Answers and Bible Places Blog for some help on this one.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

On the Third Day

I have rewritten an earlier Hillschurch post about some of the controversy over the Good Friday - Easter Sunday conundrum that some people have in regards to three days and three nights mentioned in Scripture. I got some help from Keith Schooley here. I actually lean towards a Thursday crucifixion because it seems to incoporate all the expressions used to describe the third day/three day issues.

The four expressions used in Scripture to refer to the time period between Jesus' death and his resurrection are "on the third day," "after three days," "in three days," and "three days and three nights." (There are a few more Greek constructions, but they boil down to these four meanings.) It seems clear that (at least on the surface) there is a conflict between these four expressions. If indeed Jesus rose from the dead "on the third day" after his crucifixion, it is impossible that he spent "three days and three nights" in the tomb; conversely, if he did spend "three days and three nights" in the tomb, it would seem necessary that he rose on the fourth day, not the third. While "in three days" could be reasonably accommodated to either scheme, "after three days" would seem to support the idea of three full days and nights in the tomb.

These slightly different wordings either all mean the same thing (which I think is true) or they all mean different things. If they each mean different things that would also make both Jesus and the Gospel writers somewhat unclear on their facts and possibly even liars - which is why people have difficulty with this concept.

Just to summarize the Scriptures, we have at least five readings with slightly different wordings (but unlikely to have different meanings):

- in three days (6 times) 
(Mt 26:61 ;27:40; Mk 14:58; 15:29; Jn 2:19,20)

- after three days (4 times) 
(Mt:27:63; Mk 8:31; 9:31; Lk 2:46;)

- three days later (1 time) 
(Mk 10:34)

- three days and three nights (1 time) 
(Mt 12:40)

- on the third day (9 times) 
(Mt 16:21; 17:23; 20:19; Lk 9:22; 18:33; 
24:7, 46; Ac 10:40; 1Cor 15:4)

And possibly a sixth from the road to Emmaus

- this is the third day since all this took place 
(Lk 24:21)

Another interesting passage is the one where the chief priests command that the tomb be guarded "until" the third day in Matthew 27:64 
So give the order for the tomb to be made secure until the third day. Otherwise, his disciples may come and steal the body and tell the people that he has been raised from the dead. This last deception will be worse than the first.

As I mentioned above, for most of the passages in the Bible, this issue is not really a problem because Sunday is the third day after Friday (including Friday and Sunday). However the problem comes with passages like Matthew 12:40

 For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of a huge fish, so the Son of Man will be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.

The simplest explanation is that all these terms essentially mean the same thing and cover the same period of time.
In Matthew 27:62-64, the chief priests and Pharisees ask for "the tomb to be made secure until the third day," because they remember his claim that "after three days I will rise again." The formulation "after three days," occurs immediately in context with the formulation "until the third day"; i.e., we seem to have here an explicit equating of the two expressions, "after three days" and "until the third day," which would reconfirm the idea that according to Jewish inclusive reckoning, "after three days" would mean "until the third day," and not "until the fourth day," as it would naturally mean in modern English.

I don't think the context, the culture of the time nor the text "requires" or specifies an exact 72-hour period. Neither does it absolutely rule it out. However, the phrases "on the third day" and “this is the third day since all this took place” would seem to indicate that it was somewhat less than 72 hours.

Because the text(s) doesn't make it absolutely clear one way or the other, the reasons to affirm one position or another rely mostly on people’s personal theological preferences (i.e. what do they want to try and prove) rather than historical grounds. It also doesn’t really make a whole lot of difference to our faith or the accuracy of Scripture to adopt one theory or another.

This is the simple answer and pretty much settles the matter. However ...

If you want to continue reading and continuing studying …

John’s gospel mentions a High Sabbath, which might mean the actual day of Passover (which would have been a special Sabbath and gives us a number of interpretation options). John 19:31 says

Now it was the day of Preparation, and the next day was to be a special Sabbath. Because the Jews did not want the bodies left on the crosses during the Sabbath, they asked Pilate to have the legs broken and the bodies taken down. 

It also says in Mark 15 that Jesus died on the Preparation Day.

 42 It was Preparation Day (that is, the day before the Sabbath). So as evening approached, 43Joseph of Arimathea, a prominent member of the Council, who was himself waiting for the kingdom of God, went boldly to Pilate and asked for Jesus' body. 44Pilate was surprised to hear that he was already dead.

and in 16:1

 When the Sabbath was over, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome bought spices so that they might go to anoint Jesus' body.

and Matthew 28:1

 After the Sabbath, at dawn on the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to look at the tomb.

So the information that we have is that Jesus died on the Preparation day and rose again after the Sabbath on the first day of the week (or at least the women discovered the empty tomb on Sunday morning). It also talks about being raised on the third day like in Luke 24

 6 He is not here; he has risen! Remember how he told you, while he was still with you in Galilee: 7'The Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, be crucified and on the third day be raised again.'"

However we might also be able to explain three days and three nights with a more unusual explanation. This is where this concept of the “double Sabbath” comes in. The Passover meal (seder) is usually celebrated on “Erev Pesach” or the evening before the Passover. Jesus ate the Passover meal with his disciples. But given that he was arrested later that night it is possible (even probable) that he did not eat it on Erev Pesach, but that he actually ate it with them two nights before Passover because the trial never would have happened on a Sabbath and it says he died on the "Preparation Day." Every Sabbath has a preparation day – but it may be significant that there were special preparation days for the feast Sabbath days (like Passover where they needed to sweep clean the house to remove all leaven). So Jesus had supper with his disciples on the eve (which was Wednesday evening - keep reading) of the Preparation Day before Passover.

That same evening he was arrested, tried and the next morning brought before Pilate, beaten, made to carry the cross and then crucified. He was placed in the tomb later that afternoon or evening perhaps after Passover began (at Thursday sundown - the start of the special Sabbath) and then was in the tomb on Passover (a High Sabbath - Friday) then also on the Saturday Sabbath and then on the third day (Sunday) he rose from the dead. That gives you three days (Friday, Saturday and Sunday) and three nights (Thursday night, Friday night and Saturday night). It also allows Sunday to be “the third day” (Friday, Saturday and Sunday – even though he was crucified on a Thursday). Although Scripture does not specifically mention two back to back Sabbaths in that week, I know of no Scriptures that would explicitly eliminate that possibility.

The Jewish community would never move the celebration of Passover to the Saturday so as to only have one Sabbath. Also the women would not have come with the spices on a Sabbath (ie they would not have been allowed to do the work of carrying them and preparing the body - also touching a body and defiling themselves on a Sabbath). So Jesus must have risen on the Sunday morning - and the Scriptures also say it was the first day of the week (the Sabbath is the seventh - the day God rested) that he rose.

Monday, March 22, 2010


I'm involved in a number of city-reaching activities in the Toronto area. Most of these activities are coordinated under the umbrella of MissionGTA (GTA stands for Greater Toronto Area). This week is filled with consulting and brainstorming activities that hopefully will refine our vision and move it forward. It is tiring work but we are making some good progress. Below are some parts of the documents that we are putting together. Definitely a work in progress!

After a number of months of battling to get our website back up we have finally launched a new MissionGTA website - albeit seriously lacking in content.

Our Purpose is ...

To see the kingdom of God impact every sphere of society by facilitating unity in the Body of Christ across the Greater Toronto Area.


• Identify the key indicators of a transformed city and establish and monitor benchmarks for each of these indicators.
• Facilitate unity in the Body of Christ by…
a. Connecting various groups who are already causing a transformational impact in the different spheres of society as identified by the key indicators, and where such groups do not exist encourage their formation.
b. Providing representative leaders of the different geographical communities of the GTA with opportunities for interaction, prayer and strategy formation.
c. Providing representative leaders of the different ethnic communities of the GTA with opportunities for interaction, prayer and strategy formation.
d. Mobilizing unified intercession through the efforts of PrayGTA.
e. Providing the Body of Christ with opportunities for regional prayer gatherings (including City Hall Prayer, Prayer Summits and Global Day Of Prayer).
f. Encouraging the creation of a communication hub for all Christian activity in the GTA.


• City Hall Prayer Meetings
Having spiritual leaders pray in the seat of political power is an important step in transformation. Since 2000 MissionGTA has hosted a bimonthly pastors and leaders prayer meeting at Toronto City Hall’s Council Chambers. Every second month (usually on the 2nd Wednesday, but check our website for the latest info) we gather from 10am till noon to pray for our city and region. We also encourage other local networks to pray in their civic centres.

• GTA Prayer Summits
MissionGTA hosts an annual two-day Prayer Summit, bringing together pastors and leaders to listen to what God is saying to the GTA

• Global Day of Prayer
MissionGTA provides the visionary and administrative foundation for the annual Global Day of Prayer. Visit for more info.

• Prayer Assemblies
We email prayer newsletters to hundreds of intercessors a couple of times a month and gather intercessors for strategic prayer several times a year.

• Promoting Christian Activities
Through our regular email updates we attempt to keep leaders informed of significant events in the GTA.

Our Core Values

Relational Unity
• Encouraging the expression of the one church in each geographic locality in the Greater Toronto Area
• Honouring our fellow Christians and celebrating diversity within the context of historic Christian orthodoxy

Servant Leadership
• Respecting and valuing every part of the Body of Christ through a consultative style of leadership
• Serving the local networks, helping them function as a corporate church in their locality
• Maintaining integrity before God and all people by personal and corporate accountability in all humility

Listening Prayer
• Calling the church in the GTA to corporate prayer
• Listening to hear clearly what the Holy Spirit is saying to and through the church in the region.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

A Bold and Brave Move

Meeting in rented facilities is not a big deal for most church plants. But I think it's a pretty big deal for a church in the southern USA to sell their building and meet in rented facilities so that they can invest their money to help people. Thanks for showing the church building world that it can be done.

Check out the story of Rolling Hills Baptist Church in Fayetteville, North Carolina who sold their building and now meet in a movie theatre.

Imagine if shrinking congregations would be willing to sell their buildings and help people in need or invest in hiring a number of community outreach workers to develop community run programs. Or imagine if the RC church sold off some of their highly visible assets and did the same thing.

It reminds me of a brainstorming session we had at Yonge Street Mission a few years (15) ago where I suggested that we sell all our property (probably worth about $20 million at the time), invest in more program staff and run our programs in rented facilities. Nobody else thought it was a good idea. Turns out that they moved in the opposite direction and now own twice as much real estate as they did back then. But they have also invested in hiring about twice as many program staff and are running a lot of good programs in downtown Toronto.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Do You Believe?

This is too funny not to post.

This mock ad was originally posted on Michael Liccione's blog Sacramentum Vitae It is a response to an interview in 2006 found in the New York Times with the very liberal and tolerant Presiding Bishop of The Episcopal Church, Katherine Jefferts Schori, where she explains why her church is small and shrinking compared with certain others. The bottom line of the ad offers free birth control products to Catholics and Mormons.

NYT: How many members of the Episcopal Church are there in this country?

"About 2.2 million. It used to be larger percentagewise, but Episcopalians tend to be better-educated and tend to reproduce at lower rates than some other denominations. Roman Catholics and Mormons both have theological reasons for producing lots of children."

NYT: Episcopalians aren’t interested in replenishing their ranks by having children?

"No. It’s probably the opposite. We encourage people to pay attention to the stewardship of the earth and not use more than their portion."

NYT: You’re actually Catholic by birth; your parents joined the Episcopal Church when you were 9. What led them to convert?

"It was before Vatican II had any influence in local parishes, and I think my parents were looking for a place where wrestling with questions was encouraged rather than discouraged. So, you see, it's a sign of their ignorance and heedlessness that Catholics and Mormons wax as Episcopalians wane. It's only to be expected that people who really know and care what life is about will refuse to replace themselves, and that people who neither know nor care will more than replace themselves. It's only natural that, in the end, the barbarians will have the field. And those who will have abandoned it should be proud of why they did."

Hmmm ... Barbarian evangelism through reproduction. These comments by Bishop Schori remind me of what a previous Episcopal Bishop, John Shelby Spong, has said about the church that I happened to quote in my thesis.

“The only churches that grow today [Evangelical, Catholic, etc] are those that do not, in fact, understand the issues and can therefore traffic in certainty … The churches that do attempt to interact with the emerging world [like the Episcopalian, United Church, etc] are … almost by definition, fuzzy, imprecise and relatively unappealing. They might claim to be honest but for the most part they have no real message.”

The certainty that I traffic in is the reality of the living Christ. I guess I do not really understand the issues [which is true enough], and am poorly educated [I continue to realize how little I know] and because I have children who still go to church now even though they are out of high school, I must a barbarian.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Writing - On the Side

Three years ago I was in the process of beginning to write my thesis and kept bumping into obstacles. I came across Scot McKnight's thought provoking ideas about writing found on his blog here. I deeply identiified with them because of my tendency to write when I'm inspired - which too often is at 1:30 in the morning - and those moments are too few and far between. I can't remember who said it but it has stuck with me. "You learn to write by writing. You overcome writer's block by writing. If you don't know where to go next in your thoghts just start writing." It helps with essays. It helps with blogging. It helps with journalling. It helps to write your prayers. I actually love the tactile feel of a fountain pen on paper - the scratching roughness of it and the deep inkiness. Unless out of ink they don't skip. Too bad there is nothing really to compare when typing on a keyboard (especially now as mine is acting up and doubling letters all the time.) Anyways, enjoy the post - I repeated it in its entirety below.

Writing — On the Side
If I’ve been asked this once, I’ve been asked it 500 times:
“How do you do it?” And by that my questioners want to know how I have time to teach, write books, take care of this blog, and speak on occasions. I’ve given all kinds of answers — our kids and grown and gone; I’ve been at it for 30 years; it’s fun. Now that I’ve read James Vanoosting’s essay in And the Flesh Became Words, “And Be a Writer — On the Side,” I’ve got another answer:
I don’t write “on the side.” Many take up careers, most often as professors or sometimes editors or pastors, with the plan to write “on the side.” Most editors I know struggle, once they become editors, to write on the side. Not enough time, and the best hours of the day already consumed. And most pastors don’t have time, nor the practice, to write on the side. What might surprise many of you is that the vast majority of professors also don’t write “on the side.” Why?
My explanation is simple: writing can’t be done on the side because, as James Vanoosting says it, “Writing is not pedagogy but an epistemology” (160).
In other words, writing is a lifestyle, a way of life, a way of being, a modus operandi, a way of breathing and eating and drinking. Better yet, writing is a way of learning, a way of coming to know what someone wants to know, a way of discovering.
Writing is not something to do when everything else is cleared off the desk; no, it is something that makes order of the desk. I don’t get up wondering what I will write about, but I write about what I’m wondering. (That’s almost Chestertonian.) In other words, as Augustine spoke of “faith seeking understanding,” so writing is a pen seeking understanding.
Some write about what they already know; those books show up as textbooks. Others write about what they don’t know; those books show up as suggestions, innovations, explorations, experiments, and — here’s the joy — possibly really interesting. FF Bruce wrote about what he knew; Jimmy Dunn writes about what he doesn’t know. That is why the former’s books are standard and solid, and the latter’s suggestive and provocative.
Now back to the “on the side” bit. If a person wants to write, nearly always it has to be a way of life. Some do manage to write on the side, but the vast majority write every day, all the time, and they begin the day in the mind wondering how best to express a thought.
The biggest mistake I see in young professors is the (almost always) mistaken notion that they will write during the summer break full-time or they’ll wait until the Chrstmas break or over the Spring Break. No analogies work completely, but to me that is about like saying, “I’ll not train all year long, and try running competitively over break.” Like running, writing is something that takes constant practice.
And here’s the second mistake I often see: some think they can begin a writing career by writing a book. Instead, it is easier to begin by writing book reviews, magazine articles, and journal articles. It might be easier even yet to begin with a blog — but only if you can add to it daily, or at least five times a week. (Otherwise, no one will read you.) In other words, begin small — writing small pieces so that a daily habit, or a weekly habit, is built. Over time, it can become a genuine habit.
When you look at writers, it is wise to remember that most of us/them began small, and over time the daily routine of writing became a habit. That habit is what you now see; it didn’t spring up one summer break into a full-blown habit.
In other words, writing isn’t done on the side. It’s in the soul, it’s a way of being, and it’s not for everyone. It’s a scribbler’s itch to get it down.