Gone Coastal

Monday, October 09, 2006


Well, having got that last post off my chest, I can move on to other things. Last week, Coralie left a prayer for her comment on my post The Ugly. I first connected with Coralie through a post from the Goddess back in August. I started following her blog, and praying for her and her husband.
I've long had an intercessor's heart, though sadly I've neglected it at times. But typically I'm called to pray from behind, quietly lifting up people or situations without going out of my way to highlight it. Sometimes I'm prompted to share something that comes out of an intercessory session - a thought or an image, as happened with Coralie at one point, and I try to pass that on as directly as I can, without interpreting or repackaging the message. And that's typically as far as any interaction goes.
So I found it strangely humbling to have my prayers come full circle in a prayer for me posted back to my blog from a 'near stranger' I'd been praying for. (I recall she made a similar remark about a certain stranger commenting on her blog back in August).
This got me thinking about our online community, how we can build relationships and add friends and supporters to our families from among people we've never met or spoke to in person (though next time you're north of the border, Coralie, let me know). There is indeed as much opportunity to increase togetherness and sincere fellowship through the technology as there is to avoid it.
It also got me thinking about the transparency of this community. If we have fellowship within our local congregations, much of that interaction happens behind closed doors, either in church buildings or in private homes. This is particularly true of the deeper relational stuff, where our character becomes evident through how we care for and deal with one another. There's something about physical walls that's fairly exclusive. It takes considerable courage for a church outsider to step into a church building.
On the other hand, our blogs are out there for anyone to see. For strangers to observe over time the reality of how we think, how we look after and support one another, how we demonstrate Christ's love for his bride, the church body. We aren't broadcasting ads to market our blogs to a target audience and increase readership, but I know I've got friends and colleagues who have at least occasionally stopped in to read a post or two, silently. And we've all followed links from one blog to another blog to read more from someone who left an interesting comment, or passed on the address of a blog we're following to someone else.
Granted, not everything that happens comes up in the blog, nor should it. Some of us, myself included, choose pseudonyms for ourselves and friends mentioned on our blogs to deal with certain security issues. And we choose to send some messages, wisely I think, through more private channels. But I think the reality of who we are, good and bad, is out there for people to see for themselves.
I hope our lights are shining, and I hope some of our silent readers will feel like saying hello some day.


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