The gift of social media

I was talking with friends at dinner last night thinking how blessed we are to have friendships. Gathered around the table were friends who have shared the menagerie of life for over 20 years and others who merged transparently into our homogenous community of mostly retired motorcycle riders.  We talk, we laugh, we eat dinner, we talk, we laugh, we depart to meet again next week.  Some would ask if we don’t get tired of meeting every week or how do we keep other things from interfering.  Answer: No we don’t get tired of sharing Monday nights with friends and sometimes things do interfere and Plan A has to acquiesce to Plan B.

Recently I was reading Ecclesiates – you know where in verses 8-10 the writer brings in the truth about how life can sometimes get pretty mundane.  “All things are wearisome, more than one can say. The eye never has enough of seeing, nor the ear its fill of hearing. What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun.  Is there anything of which one can say,  “Look! This is something new”?”  There’s an old Country Western song that somberly talks about the same thing … “Life gets tedious, don’t it.”  I don’t remember the tune – in fact I don’t think there was a tune, but life gets tedious, don’t it?

Yesterday an organization posted on Facebook “Are Facebook friends really friends?” You can answer for yourself, but this is my take on that question. Just as there are very casual acquaintances, familiar friendships, and deep soul mate friendships, so are there levels of friendships through social media. Hundreds of years ago when families started scattering instead of staying in their home town forever, we had the pony express, then the U.S. Mail, then the telegraph, then the telephone — the links between friendships; communications bonding relationships.  Social media is a gift. This is the new way we stay in touch with people we love. It works!

When God created the heavens and the earth, when he created people in his image, he knew that we would be disbursed across continents. God knew that we would crave the relationships we shared with friends from our past and friends who live next door.  A lot goes on in social media that does not please God, true. The Internet can be a place of destruction to relationships.  But as with anything else, if there is good that can come out of it, capitalize on that good thing.

Is there someone you can encourage today using email, Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, Instagram, Pinterest, your own blog?  Social media is a tool and what are tools for?  To help us do things better and more effectively.  Tools are used to lift.  Tools are used to smooth things out. Tools are used to tear down the old and replace it with new.  What’s in your tool box today?  What can you use to clear a path and begin a new construction project to build someone up in their faith, encourage them on their journey, love them back to a peaceful life?

Some encouragement from Philippians 2 “If you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, any tenderness and compassion,  make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind. Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit.  Value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others. for it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose. Do everything without grumbling or arguing…Then you will shine among them like stars in the sky as you hold firmly to the word of life. And then I will be able to boast on the day of Christ that I did not run or labor in vain ….then in faith, I will be glad and rejoice with all of you. So you too should be glad and rejoice with me.

Ready for this day?  Get your joy on.  Let’s get out there!


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