Monday, January 21, 2008

Facebook and Fellowship

All over the world men and women and young people are in search of community. Within each of us beats a desire to be known and to know others in a deep and satisfying manner. In a past generation this was displayed in meeting at the local corner or in the proliferation of public houses up and down the country. Today the longing for community is displayed in cyberspace. Myspace was at one time signing up 500,000 new users a week. Bebo advertises itself as a social media network where friends share their lives. Friends Reunited uk claims to have 19 million old friends listed. All in the quest for community. Why such a strong desire that displays itself in so many different ways? The answer is simple - we are wired for community. When God created man, though he was perfect, in a perfect world and in contact with God for he had no sin we are given the startling information in Genesis 2v18 It is not good for man to be alone. Made in the image on God we are designed to have meaningful and satisfying contact with others. Sadly our sin has spoiled everything and every effort to connect with others quickly gets marred and does not satisfy.
So where is the answer? In the gospel, in I John 1v3 we read, We proclaim to you what we have seen and heard, so that you also may have fellowship with us. And our fellowship is with the Father and with His Son Jesus Christ. When we are restored to fellowship with God through faith alone in Christ alone we are linked with other Christians in true fellowship.
The local church is God's visual tract to the world. The world ought to be able to look at your church and mine and be blown away by the unity amidst our diversity. They ought to see in all our local churches where true community is found and how to true community can be experienced. Your congregation is God's facebook for the lost world the one place where people can truly share their lives that God is remaking. Your church is to show that it is possible for enemies to be reunited - that is how it was in the NT church with Jew and Gentile sitting together, lovingly caring and providing for one another.

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