January 12th, 2020

Recently Facebook started a new advertising campaign based on its Groups feature. There is the ad where the deployed mother has members of her group, decorate her families house for Christmas, or the guy who discovers the Basset hound park. But, it got me to thinking that maybe Facebook has figured out what has been known since the beginning of time. We were made for relationships, and connection. I mean, it is nice to find out what friends from High School, or friends on the other side of the country, or world are doing. It is nice to see pictures of nieces and nephews as they grow, but even with all the likes and comments, the pics and the instant messaging, there is something missing. It has been said that we are more connected as a planet than at any other time in our history, yet we are more isolated as individuals than we have ever been. How is it that in a society where virtually every single person has access to the internet, and the ability to connect with anyone else on the internet, that loneliness and depression are so prevalent? How is it that in a time when long distance minutes (kids, ask your parents) don’t exist, and everyone has a cell phone in their pocket or their purse, that we feel so isolated and disconnected? Could it have something to do with the age old truth that we were made (created) to have relationships, to have connections? In the first book of the Bible, God said, it was not good for Adam to be alone… and nothing has changed. We live in a world in which we can be anonymous, and shielded, a culture in which we can filter out what we don’t want. But, that isn’t what our heart wants, and what our spirit years for. We long for deep meaningful relationships, for personal interaction, for intimacy. I can’t tell you how many “friends” I have on Facebook or how many contacts I have in my phone, but I can name off the few men and women that I know I can count on. I can count (on one hand) the people that I can go to with anything, knowing that they love me, and that there are no secrets, or agendas in our relationship. But those relationships don’t happen instantly, or by accident. They begin with out willingness to connect with others, and with the decision to be vulnerable and honest. It is the reason that the Bible tells us to not give up the habit of meeting together, so that we may encourage one another. Because we need that, not from motivational speakers, or posters, or from cool memes on the internet. We need men and women in our lives who are a part of our lives, who will pat us on the back, let us cry on their shoulder, and kick us in the rear end when needed. We need relationships that matter. And no relationship is more important than the one we have with the Savior, Jesus, who made us this way. So, if you are feeling disconnected, or alone, I want to invite you to join us this morning at Antioch Christian. We are not a perfect group of people, but we are a friendly group of people, who understand that we are only who we are, and where we are, because of the relationship we have with Jesus.