Tuesday, 13 September 2016

Let's connect

And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, 25 not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching. Hebrews 10:24-25
You may not have heard, but I recently moved... to Cambodia. (Oh, you have heard. Don't exaggerate, it hasn't been a thousand times. Well, some people may have missed it, okay? No, Queen Elizabeth doesn't know that I've moved; you're just being silly now.) This has made me thankful for modern technology, and some old school ones as well.

Skype, WhatsApp, Facebook are all brilliant for keeping connected with people back at home*. This is great, as it means that I can know what's happening in the UK and I can also share what's happening over here. The Bible calls us to meet with one another, and to spur one another on toward love and good deeds. I'm so thankful for the opportunity to talk with my Christian friends at home and for the encouragement that is! It's amazing that despite being 6,000 miles apart, we can still spur one another on.

However, some people think that a lot of social media actually encourages superficiality in relationships rather than being helpful. The Bible encourages us to have deeper relationships with one another. Not just ones of fleeting, 140-character updates. So how do we make sure we are using these technologies to do this? I love The Message's rendering of the verses at the top:
Let’s see how inventive we can be in encouraging love and helping out, not avoiding worshiping together as some do but spurring each other on, especially as we see the big Day approaching.
I think modern technology means that we can be creative and we have all the more opportunities to worship, encourage and communicate together.

But, there is always good old-fashioned snail mail. On Friday, I received my first post! (I've not actually given my address out to many in UK as its only temporary. Also, the post system here is perhaps not the most efficient.) The teenagers at the youth camp I help out each year (except this one) wrote me cards and postcards. It was a massive blessing to get them.

So, let's encourage one another- whether in good old fashioned meet-ups or snail mail, or by Facebook messenger!

Quick questions

  1. How have you been encouraged lately?
  2. What imaginative ways have you seen that can help us encourage one another?
  3. Who are you going to encourage today and how will you do it?

*These messaging apps are not always best when more private information needs to be shared, or if the context is slightly more complex. This is because privacy cannot always be guaranteed; the security on a lot of these apps is somewhat lax.

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