Archives For relationships

Sorry I haven’t posted in a while, I am busy preparing for my spring semester classes, which includes my new Internet Ministry course.  However, I ran across this article today and thought I would share it. The article relates how people in Second Life are getting married inside of Second Life and then meeting in the “real world” and forming a relationship there as well (many times getting married). This goes back to a couple of previous postings I had about how we need to learn to integrate online relationships that are avatar-based (whether it is in Second Life, World of Warcraft, or Facebook) with relationships in the real world. How can we take what we do online and translate it into real-world relationships to better understand others and share our message with them?

The Lord has been teaching me lately about how He uses relationships as the primary means for transforming lives. Many of us, myself included, grew up focusing on how to intellectually understand the gospel.  To mature in the faith meant understanding doctrine and reading C.S. Lewis.  Now, there’s nothing wrong with this – it is an integral part of growing in your faith. But God has been showing me that true faith includes relationships. How we interact with those around us is also an important part of our Christian walk. Maybe more important.

So how does this relate to web sites? Well, it seems to me that, for the most part, the web sites I see are directed at the head (intellect) and not the heart (relationships).  But yet, to have a real impact, we must be focusing on both. Our web site readers will not internalize our message if they do not feel a connection to it.

So, how can we do this?  We must make our web sites personal. When someone reads a web site, they shouldn’t be seeing a “church” web site or a “Christian ministry” web site – they should be seeing people.  This can be done in many ways: pictures, stories, testimonies, video, audio. Connections to more personal sites such as blogs or Facebook profiles could also do this.

How does your church or ministry web site do in this area? I will be writing and researching this further this summer, so stay tuned! And I will be presenting all my findings this fall at the Internet Ministry Conference, so if you’re thinking about going, get signed up now.