A few examples of "The Small Things"

Last week in this space I encouraged the “one-talent” Christians out there to not lose heart, but rather to rejoice in the “small things” they may be able to do in service to God and to the church.  I thought I would follow up today with some specifics.

Again, these are things that virtually any Christian can do. 

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Reason

Because I love torturing myself, I occasionally use social media to check on some of the Christians I have known in the past who have shown signs of faith slippage.  Invariably I find what I expect.  It’s a sickness.  I need to stop.

Anyway, one lovely young girl from our past got a tattoo on her foot awhile back.  It reads, “Everything happens for a reason.”  She has a beautiful baby girl now.  Never been married.  I doubt she sees the irony.

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Delete

December has five Saturdays, Sundays and Mondays this year.  That’s unusual, as you might expect.  Pointless and uninteresting, sure, but unusual.  In fact, it was suggested on Facebook (yes, I’m railing on Facebook again today) that it only occurs once every 823 years.  OK, that might push it past the border into Interestingland.

Except it’s not true.  And when you think about it, it can’t be true. 

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Who is my brother?

One of my Facebook “friends” (actually a complete stranger to me — social media makes for odd relationships) posted the following last week: “Don’t you dare tell me who I can call my brothers and sisters in Christ!  That is way above your pay grade!”

I was tempted to respond, “Is it above yours?”

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Selfies

I am channeling Jude today.  The epistler famously wrote of feeling “the necessity” to write how his readers should “contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all handed down to the saints” (Jude 3).  His plan had been to write regarding their “common salvation.”  Similarly, though not by inspiration, I was feeling the urge to write regarding the strange compulsion toward selfies in our culture (a less noble topic, granted).  But amidst my angst, I think I may have found some sympathy.  And I find myself writing something quite different from what I had planned.

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Like

"Like," for most English-speaking humans, means like.  I say that to clarify for those who may not be acquainted with the nuances of social media.  When you “like” your wife’s cooking, it may simply mean that you don’t want to eat Cheerios for dinner tomorrow night.  When you “like” your child’s latest painting, it may say speak more to your relationship with the child than it does the child’s artistic talent.  But usually, like means like.  And that’s especially true if, as with social media, you provide no context.

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Judgment

I preached a sermon Sunday in which I mentioned how discouraged I am over people’s obsession with sports, how completely irrational and destructive behavior is permitted and even bragged about because of “team loyalty.”  Just an hour or two later, in a (probably) unrelated incident, Mark Wahlberg walked out on his beloved Patriots at the Super Bowl (they were behind 28-12 at the time) and began receiving an unceasing stream of vitriol from other fans.   

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Unfriend

It used to be that the ultimate enticement was, “I’ll be your friend.”  Granted, a 6-year-old mind has a limited grasp on the “friend” concept.  But it was a good thing; I got that much.  And when the cool kid offered friendship in exchange for putting him on the same dodgeball team as the other cool kid, well, you have to seriously consider an offer like that.

Today, thanks to social media, there is the "unfriend."

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