How to Build Online Relationships Like Jesus (Part 5)

make adjustments, stay on courseIf you’ve been following along parts 1-4 of this series, you have your systems (lists & apps) in place to facilitate both deep relationships with close friends and connections with large crowds, and you’re using “best practices” to prepare your heart and engage with people in all of you relational tiers each day.

But we can’t just put the cruise control on at this point or it could lead to complacency, distractions, or veering off course when the road of life takes a turn.

What adjustments do we need to make to keep our online relationships on track?

Here are 7 suggestions…

  1. Look for people who you’re engaging with on an increased basis. Does anyone need to be added to a list or put on a higher priority list?
  2. Look for people on your lists who may be distracting you from living out your faith online. Anyone flooding you with negative updates? Links to questionable sites? Does anyone need to be removed from a list?
  3. How are you doing with your boundaries? If you’re spending too much time online or you’re not keeping to the time constraints you set-up, you may need to restrict your time or reduce the number of people on your lists.
  4. How are you doing on the humility thing? Are you really engaging people in social media to serve them? Or are you finding yourself posting just to get attention or increase your stats?
  5. How is your offline time with God, family, and friends? If any of these relationships are struggling, it might be worthwhile to take some time off – a day or two, a week, or maybe even longer.
  6. How is life? Some seasons of life are more demanding and may call for reducing our online engagement indefinitely. That may mean cutting back blogging. In some seasons, perhaps all you have time, energy, or emotion for are your closest friends and you have to give up.
  7. As with everything we do in life, we’ve got to constantly be praying for guidance and listening to the Holy Spirit. Don’t keep doing what you’re doing out of a sense of compulsion or obligation, but only out of a sense of God’s calling.

Discussion:

  1. What other checks do you suggest people make to keep their social media usage and relationships healthy?
  2. What adjustments do you need to make?

That wraps up this 5 part series on How to Develop Online Relationships like Jesus. It’s my sincerest hope that through strategic, intentional, Spirit-led use of social media you are able to develop deep, meaningful relationships as well connect with and impact large crowds of people.

Paul Steinbrueck is co-founder and CEO of OurChurch.Com, elder of CypressMeadows.org, husband, father of 3, blogger. You can follow him on Twitter at @PaulSteinbrueck and add him to your circles at Google+ as +Paul Steinbrueck.

3 Responses to “How to Build Online Relationships Like Jesus (Part 5)”

  1. Thanks for sharing this. I just reshuffled my lists today, they were becoming so unmanageable. I may need to still revome some people from my lists. Thaks for helping us keep the faith in the world of Twitter.

    • PaulSteinbrueck Jun 29, 2011 at 4:15 pm

      I hear you, Esta! My lists get a unmanageable at times too. I just keep meeting so many awesome people online – people who I want to get to know better and read their stuff – I can't help but add them to a list. But as the saying goes, "If everything is important, nothing is important." :)

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