A United Methodist Pastor's Theological Reflections

"But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory (nikos) through our Lord Jesus Christ." - I Corinthians 15:57

Monday, October 1, 2012

A Cyber Blessing

Cyber ministry is a rapidly growing medium in the life of the church and that's a good thing.  While it can't totally replace face to face interaction, it can be a very helpful way for the faith community to stay in touch while apart. 

While not the most tech savvy person, I have tried my best to use facebook, twitter, and my Nikos blog to share the good news of Jesus Christ.  If I had to use a percentage, my guess is that at least 90% of my facebook updates, tweets, and Nikos articles are related to the church and the Christian faith journey.  I try to communicate to a wide audience while at the same time give particular focus to the church I am serving as pastor.

The church has a long history of using the predominate media of their day to communicate the good news of Jesus Christ:
  • Jesus used storytelling in a culture where this was the primary method of communicating news and truth.
  • The church in the Middle Ages used stained glass windows to help a culture that was predominately illiterate. 
  • The Protestant Reformation used the printing press to help the masses have a copy of the bible.
  • The Wesley's published a magazine in 18th century England which included early Methodist testimonies of faith to help people know that God loved them and that they can have a personal relationship with Christ.
In the 21st century, cyber ministry offers yet another powerful tool to help the church in communicating the good news of the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ.  This became very clear to me one day when a young person in my church sent me a facebook message asking me about a troubling spiritual question that called for a prompt response.  In a matter of a couple of minutes, I as her pastor, was able to share my pastoral thoughts on the issue that she was facing in that very moment. Yes, ideally, face to face interaction is the way to go, but sometimes God even uses facebook to help us support and encourage one another in our faith journeys.

So this leads me to offer this prayer of blessing for the tools of cyber ministry. They are just tools, but with God's help they become avenues for healing and transformation. I thank the great people at www.dailyoffice.org for offering these words.  I modified this prayer slightly. Pray with me...

A Cyber Ministry Blessing
O God, thank you for new discoveries and technologies that strengthen our relationship with you by providing universal access in Word, song, art and prayer. Help us to use our church's Facebook group, twitter, blogs and other internet tools and applications to glorify you and carry out your mission of justice, healing and peace, in Jesus’ name. Amen.

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