In part of the sermon I dealt with true fellowship, making strong friendships like that of David and Jonathan in the bible (see 1 Sam. 18:1 & 2 Sam. 1:26). Not like the ones that we perhaps make on Facebook, in which we may see a few pics and update on what's happening in a 'friends' life, without really ever speaking to many of them.
Then this morning I read an article (could've used it before my sermon:) in the NY Times regarding the effects technology may be having on young people being able to make true friendships. The article states:
"The question on researchers’ minds is whether all that texting, instant messaging and online social networking allows children to become more connected and supportive of their friends — or whether the quality of their interactions is being diminished without the intimacy and emotional give and take of regular, extended face-to-face time."Having a generation that is growing up with social media such as facebook, twitter, IM, texting, and video chatting. Researchers are trying to see what kind of effects this is having on people really connecting with each other face to face.
Hilary Stout who wrote the article quotes Hannah a 15y/o girl saying;
“I definitely have conversations but I think the new form of actually talking to someone is video chat because you’re actually seeing them,” she said. “I’ve definitely done phone calls at one time or another but it is considered, maybe, old school.”Old school? Well Hannah may not be far off, since it has been said, though not confirmed, that when Apple which is set to release their new upgraded iphone this summer. It will have video conferencing! Once again changing the way we communicate on a daily basis to some degree.
The word is still out on whether social media is helping or hindering teens/youth in their social development when it comes to engaging people face to face in order to have true 'friends/fellowship'. To be fair I believe this is not just for teens/youth but even adults.
We live in an ever changing world, in which simply calling someone is well...getting to be old school. Ultimately though there is something that will never grow old, never be passe, never change. That is of course our biblical need for true friends/fellowship!
So what do you think? How important is it to have true friends/fellowship? Do you feel that this is something that is lacking in our churches?
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