I’m still asking that question…”What role does silence play in all this noise?” Read the rest of the original post here.
I’ll be completely candid and honest, one of my biggest twitter pet peeves is all of the “name dropping” that seems to happen. In fact, as a result I’ve gotten to the point of rarely tagging people in my tweets because I don’t want be lumped in with the name droppers.
But, I’ve been thinking this week about the difference between name dropping and “friend dropping” or “someone you believe in dropping.” I had the opportunity to meet some incredible people this week who are new friends and people I believe in. But, if you looked at my tweets from the last couple of days you wouldn’t have any idea who any of those incredible people were. And honestly, that makes me a bit sad because I want the world to know about those people. They are genuine, influential, encouraging, relationship building, servant hearted, Jesus loving dreamers. They are the kind of people that give me hope for the world and for the Church.
So, I’m actively struggling to find a balance. A balance between too many names and not enough names. A balance of the difference between a name and a friend or someone I believe in. And all of that makes me wonder if what I think is “name dropping” is often just people who are excited to talk about their friends and people they believe in.
On Saturday I had lunch with a friend who I met because of a “mutual friend” on Facebook and a Facebook #fail.
Saturday night I went out with my roommates whom I found on Craigslist.
Sunday morning I went to church…a church that I call a home…a church that I ended up at because of a friendship that developed several states away via Twitter.
We can criticize all we want, and yes, we need to remember that technology and social media are simply tools. But, if we slow down enough to see it, at the heart of it all is people and relationships. That is why I love technology.
Why do you love technology?
A brief glance through 140 character twitter bios quickly results in a long list of titles we use to identify ourselves. I won’t call anyone out by making a list, but it makes me wonder where we root our identity as individuals. I don’t think artists are the only ones who have a tendency to draw their identity from what they create…from their work…from what they do. In fact I would argue that most of those titles in social media bios describe what we do more than who we are. I can’t help but wonder if it’s because we root our identities in what we do.
I’ll be the first to admit that I’m guilty of this. I’ve spent my entire life unknowingly (or at least refusing to admit it) rooting my identity in what I do…in the results I produce. When I decided that God was calling me to quit my job at my church and move to Nashville a big piece of that puzzle was the conviction to go somewhere for who I was going to be there rather than what I was going to do there. I think it was God’s way of retraining me on where I root my identity. And He’s still teaching me. There are days when I’m 100% content and my identity is firmly rooted in the fact that I am a loved and redeemed child of God but there are also days when the fact that I don’t have a title or a really defined “what” in my life right now drives me absolutely crazy. And it drives me crazy because in those moments I feel like if I don’t have a “what” I don’t have an identity.
Now, maybe I’m over-analyzing a 140 character bio. But, maybe not. Either way I would encourage us all to remember that God loves us first and foremost for who we are, not what we do. In His eyes, what we do should flow out of who we are.
Lord, help us to root our identity in the fact that we are created, not in what we create.
Relationships. One simple word, but one word that can make or break or so much. One word that demands our focus and attention whether we like it or not. One word that God called us to – with Him and with others.
In a society where we live so much of our time online our view of relationships can become quite distorted if we’re not careful. We can develop a community that is a mile long but only an inch deep.
Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that relationships cannot be built or fostered through online interaction. What I am saying, however, is that we can’t let it stop there. If we do, we’re missing out. We’re missing out on depth and growth in community. We have to take the online offline.
I’ve always been a firm believer in that – taking the online offline, but my time at the Echo Conference last week reaffirmed that. Sharing a meal and great conversation or staying up well past 2am talking about life, ministry and the church is something that you just can’t duplicate online.
So here’s to being intentional about seizing opportunities to take the online offline…to have a face to face conversation with someone who you normally associate with a tiny square picture on a screen. And here’s to intentionally using the online tools to continue the relationships when distance makes offline impossible.