While we’ve been social distancing, social media has become a huge blessing and a lifeline for many. Perhaps now, more than ever, we can appreciate all the different ways to stay in touch – but despite that, it can be easy to lose contact with people you were once close to.
Why not choose now, when many might be feeling isolated, to put that right? If you’re worried your approach won’t be welcomed, start with prayer to prepare the way, then take the first step, trusting God to open the door.
Green: Spend a few minutes in prayer, asking God to show you who he has in mind for you to reconnect with. Write down their name, and continue to pray blessing over them and for the Lord to help you reach out.
Amber: Suggest a digital catch up with someone who you haven’t seen for years, maybe someone that you’ve heard has been through a particularly hard time or may be alone.
Red: Be ready to share something of your life with them, including what excited you about Jesus.
‘Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.’ (Colossians 4:5–6 NIV)
Keeping in touch with people is hard work. (Is that because people tend to be hard work?! Me included?!)
I don’t find it easy. But I work at it.
I work at it because people are made in the image of God and are worthy of our love and attention.
I work at it because God is actively at work in people’s lives – sometimes unbeknownst to them – and I want to be there for people when they are ready to consider Jesus.
My friend Carl inspired me to keep a spreadsheet that helps me stay in touch with others. I list out the people I know and am in touch with regularly. Then I list out the people I know who are important to me but whom I haven’t seen for a while. I have a slot in my weekly calendar to pray through the list. This method keeps me accountable – perhaps it wouldn’t work for you but I’m sure there are other ways that would.
I don’t always have time to follow up with everyone but perhaps God lays one person on my heart and I try and follow up with them. Sometimes it’s just a hello. Sometimes we are able to catch up on the phone or over a coffee. Sometimes I am able to share what God is doing and it leads to further conversations, perhaps even a look at the Bible.
I’m ready to go as far as my friend would like to go in showing them Jesus. But if they are not up for that, at least I’ve connected and said hello, and that in itself is a wonderful thing!
Le Fras Strydom is Director of the Word One to One. Le Fras has found the most effective way to help others know Jesus is to simply open the Bible with them.
Today’s charity is: The Word One to One
The Word 121 is a guided read-through of John’s gospel (a book of the Bible). Each episode takes a small section of John’s gospel to read through verse by verse.