Thursday, January 24, 2013

community coming near

community has been coming to me in new ways in the last year or so thanks to social media and some women who listen and respond to other women.

i have been blessed with the gift of two incredible groups of women that have become dear to me and allow me to see Jesus up close and personal.  i "found" these women while searching to connect on a deeper level with other women seeking after God.  we were brought together through the ministry of (in)courage.

just a few examples...

one night as i struggled to find words to share with others i spent some time doing research on Facebook.  while there one post led to another and i became intrigued by a link posted by a "friend."  the link led to a powerful You Tube video of an old hymn sung in a way that was unfamiliar to me.  that video led to the words i needed to share with others.

in the past when something like happened i would say a quick prayer of thanks and move on.  this time i took a risk and sent a message to the lady who posted the link thanking her for how much the post blessed me.  that evening we messaged back and forth and i now have a new friend i may never meet this side of heaven.

  • me:  Thank you for sharing. I so needed that this evening. It has been a rough day and now I have had church. To be so free in front of others in worship is a gift.  And the words are words to remember as I prepare to step into the pulpit tomorrow.  You have blessed me in ways you will never know C!
    C: well then go'on and preach, girl! Stand flat footed and deliver healing water to those thirsty in the desert. I want to hear all about it. 
    me:  you make my heart smile.  sweet dreams!
    C: a blessing upon your rest and your heart. Good night, sweet sister. Peace and good to you in Jesus' name

on another evening i realized a lady in one of the groups whose passion and love for her children had touched me had been on my heart all day (this is always a sign to me to pray for a person).  usually that would lead me to quietly praying and moving on.  this time i took yet another risk and send a note to her.  her response let me know the prayers were appreciated.  i don't know what i was praying for and don't need to know, but was glad to know reaching out helped a sister on the journey at the right time.

  • me:  Not sure why but God has placed you on my heart this afternoon. I took that as a call to pray for you and your family.  No need to share why, just wanted you to know I am praying.
    J: Thank you for that! I appreciate it more than you will ever know.  :)
    me: <3

    a high school friend recently connected with me in one of these groups and our relationship has grown in ways living in two different countries would not have allowed without social media.  while struggling through the crud recently i was unable to share in my super power of (in)couragement.  she noticed and posted words of prayer and healing which were affirmed by other ladies in the group.  they used their super powers to bring a smile to a sickie face.

M: Let's remember to pray for Julie today. I think I'm seeing that she's not feeling great today. You are LOVED dear friend! I'm sure I speak for the whole community here :-)

God is using social media to send people into my life in new ways and at just the right time for just the right purpose.   what started in each of these examples as one way communication became relationship.  relationship centered on Christ and rooted deeper as we trust in God to work out the details.

there are many women who are sharing their super power of (in)couraging others and social media is allowing us to live into being the body of Christ as we share our gifts to build one another up.  community and connection is happening in new ways.  creative ways.  ways this over 50 woman still doesn't always understand yet is coming to thank God for.

want to experience this incredible community for yourself?  stay tuned at (in)courage for the next round of groups for women beginning february 12th.  and join us april 26th and 27th for (in)RL 2013.

As you go, 
proclaim the good news, 
“The kingdom of heaven
has come near.”  
Matthew 10.7