We are a social media society, indeed. In an instant, millions can reach us and likewise we can reach millions. This has enormous opportunities — both positive and not-so-positive.
Social media is reshaping our understanding of words and basic concepts. Forty years ago, a friend meant someone with whom you grew up, attended school, played sports, worshipped, and/or formed another bond. Today, social media extends the terms to people you have never met. Ironically, chance encounters on social media can turn today’s “Friend” into tomorrow’s verbal enemy.
Social media even leads us to “Like” notices that could involve a death, illness, serious accident, or other misfortune.
It’s the nature of the lexicon that now shapes the world of cyberspace.
Coupled with this next lexicon is the microwave nature of our hectic world. I once heard a minister say in a sermon, “Our need for fast-and-in-a-hurry even extend to God. We want our patience, and want it now!” My family members often laugh about the length of my prayers over dinner. Once we lifted up our eyes to find Tyson, my sister’s Brindle Boxer, stretched-out sleep in the center of our prayer circle. That led to a memorable round of jokes and laughs about my prayers. We do seem to be in quite a hurry these days about so many things.
On yesterday, I received a notice from John, a Kappa Alpha Psi fraternity brother, who was about to undergo surgery. We’ve never met, but share the Kappa bond. To his announcement, I replied, “Prayers with you, my Brother.”
Surely, you’ve read similar post responses and might have posted something like this on-occasion. Well, no sooner than I could hit enter, my mind drifted to some work I needed to complete. Translated — the only prayer in John’s situation was about to be the words on that post, and nothing to the Lord. Thank the Holy Spirit for pressing me, “Ah, is there something you need to do before moving on with your work?“
It was in that brief, quiet moment that God reminded me that I committed to praying for John. He had not asked for my prayers. His announcement was a general one. I did not have to respond to John’s announcement, but I did. And I have made a commitment. And that commitment invoked our Lord. We are blessed that the Spirit really does speak to our spirit.
This experience leads me to ask you, the reader, what does it mean to say you are in-prayer with someone? Is this another way of saying, “I’m thinking of you“, or does it literally mean that you are going to pause for a moment to place the name or names of persons before the Lord on a matter of concern? Does that reply to an announcement lead to you speaking to the Lord or have you discovered times when the hectic nature of your life soon moves you away from the concern at-hand to another? If indeed the fervent and and effectual prayer of a righteous man avails much, have you ever found that perhaps your following-up with a prayer might literally be the link to someone else’s blessing?
Had it not been for the Spirit of the Living God, I would have failed John and failed the Lord.
Ever been there? If so, are you willing to slow it down, as the Lord did me, to follow-up with prayer?
I’d love to hear from you…
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