Tag Archives: social networking

Twunity

Tuesday Re-mix –

“He who no longer is listening to his brother will soon be no longer listening to God.” Dietrich Bonhoeffer

If I am honest with myself, I must admit that my ability to hear God speak through you is directly related to how much “agreement” you and I have on issues which are important to me.  The more we disagree, the less we listen to each other.  In turn, the less we listen to each other as Christians, the further we get from experiencing unity.  But understand this: it is not disagreement that kills our unity…it is our inability to manage that disagreement.

Anyone involved in a peacemaking ministry to Christians will tell you that doctrinal differences are by far the most difficult differences for Christians to work through.  It is one thing to say “In essentials, unity; in doubtful matters, liberty; and in all things, charity” (a saying often attributed to Augustine), but we Christians cannot even agree on what is essential and what is not.  50 years ago, one’s millenial view was considered by many to be essential.  Today, one’s view of inerrancy of scripture is considered by many to be essential.  Who knows what the hot-button issue will be for the next generation?  And so, how you see certain “litmus test” issues of mine will determine my willingness to hear God speak through you on other matters.

For as long as I have been alive (and surely for much longer than that), peacemakers have struggled to get conflicted parties beyond their points of disagreement in order to agree on some other issues, i.e., in order to find some common ground elsewhere.  That, I suppose, is one of the real challenges to the global church today.  I am not talking here about some watered-down, ecumenical revolution …

Church Unity for a Social Media Generation

Tuesday Re-mix –

If you’re reading a blog (and you are, by the way), then you probably already understand that this youngest adult generation in the church, the “social media generation”, is learning to do relationships a little differently than relationships have ever been done before (and I should add here that social media has now made huge inroads into all the generations and no longer “belongs” just to the 18-35 crowd–the “social media generation”, therefore is not an age-label, but rather an era label for our time).  Between TwitterFacebookMy SpaceLinked In, and a host of other social networking worlds, this generation is more connected with one another than any generation before it.  Reportedly, more than 95% of American college students today are actively connected in one or more of these social networks.  Their culture has them receiving massive amounts of information about one another all day and night through steady streams of photos, videos, and text.  Never before has an entire generation been more “connected” with one another. Tony Steward of church.tv observes, for example, that the concept of a class reunion will be completely foreign to this generation, who will have stayed “connected” with each other throughout the years following their graduation so that a “reunion” will seem superfluous.

social-networkingAn older generation of Christians has stood back and observed all of this “interconnectedness” with varying responses.  While some of us have worked to embrace it and participate, others are more wary, calling into question the long-term ramifications.  The concerns range from “what does this do to intimacy in relationships?” to “what does this fast-paced, fire-hydrant delivery of information do to the brain?”  For purposes of my point here, I will not engage that debate.  But I will say it is more …