As a young man I spent a great deal of time traveling. I had many experiences exploring new lands and learning new things. Some of what I learned has stayed with me to this day. I learned it is best to travel light, that meeting new people is an essential part of the journey, that new discoveries are only open to those willing to try something new and that helping others is just as important as being helped. These lessons are a vital part of why I tweet. They have helped me to reflect on Jesus’ words in Acts 1:8 and enter into this virtual world as a witness for Christ.
Connecting is an important part of the culture of Twitter. Unlike Facebook most of the people you follow or who follow you are strangers at the start. You get to know them through the various tools that Twitter provides. They also get to know you and whether or not they want to continue to follow you. It is essential to be yourself, travel light and be willing to meet new people.
Communicating is essential. This means learning a new language and culture. In the land of Twitter we are required to communicate within a fixed limit of 140 characters. It is intriguing and fascinating how much can actually be said in a very small amount of space. We also need to learn the lingo. Lingo used on Twitter is both unique and important. It is unique because it has to fit within the context of a limited space. Knowing the lingo is important because many words and phrases are abbreviated which allows you to use the limited space to more fully share your thoughts. So, to be effective on Twitter it is vital to learn this lingo.
Being able to communicate well is also vital if you are on Twitter. It will determine how much influence you have in this land. Each time you share and someone else shares what you shared your influence is multiplied. How amazing it is when that influence brings people closer to Jesus. This is the power of Twitter.
Caring about others ought to be a way of life for Christians on Twitter. It can make a powerful difference in the lives of those who inhabit this land. Sometimes it is just answering a tweet with a word of encouragement. Being real in a virtual world is shown by the way we care about others. This is more difficult then it at first appears. However, the dividends make it worth the effort.
A very enjoyable part of going on any journey is discovering new things. Most residents in the land of Twitter are very patient with new comers. Many want to help people get settled in and become a vital part of the community. Can you imagine the difference a loving and active Christian witness could make in the lives of tweeps?
The Twittersphere is a remarkable place filled with remarkable people. It is a land full of opportunities to connect, to communicate and to care about others. It is up to us to be willing to enter into this land and take advantage of these God given opportunities.
A few questions:
1) If you have not started using twitter what is stopping you?
2) If you are on twitter why did you choose to use it?
3) What are some possible ways you can envision twitter being used for ministry?
4) Why do you think twitter is so appealing to so many people?
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