What You Can Do About Migration Cyber Effects, 8.0

What You Can Do about Migration Cyber Effect, 8.0

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The global effect of all these issues on the body of Christ is what it’s doing to our local churches. The family is the core of all civil societies, and within the Christian world, the family constitutes the local church. In former generations, the social center of every community was the local church building, the structure where Christian families gathered to build koinonia practically. All roads led to the church building.

In This Series:

Three to Thrive

It’s where people worshiped, got married, were buried, and gathered socially. We met for choir practice, evangelism, and family fun days. We coined an expression to emphasize the value of the building: “We’re going to church.” We let the Internet age destroy the historical, social center for the Christian community. We have migrated to endless social communities in cyberspace, relocating the church building to the perimeter of our lives and moving our preferred social media platforms to the center.

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We have thrown the baby out with the bathwater as we mock our former “three to thrive habits” of showing up for church Sunday morning, Sunday night, and Wednesday night. We restricted our church attendance sermon diet to once on Sunday, competing with our vacations, Sundays on the lake, and kid’s sports. Meanwhile, our youth have full access to these social platforms where they can hang out with their friends anytime, day or night, and they love it. When they turn eighteen and go to college or get jobs, it’s not a big deal for many of them to leave their local churches behind because the building (or its inhabitants, the church) was not at the center of their lives anyhow; it was one of many social offerings that sat on the perimeter. I mean, “Why get in a car and drive to the building to meet up with someone when I can do it in seconds online?”

A high view of the church, which was a given, is old-school. There are several reasons why our teens are leaving our churches in droves, but you will always find a smartphone and its effects associated with this problem. One of the assessment questions you want to ask about your child is his view of the local church. Is he committed to it, as evidenced by his desire to fellowship with flesh and blood people in the church? Or would his first impulse be to grab his phone and connect there? Are you committed to your local church? Or do you prefer strangers on the train, in cyberspace, or some other spot where connecting is more effortless but transformative sanctifying discipleship is lacking?

Call to Action

  1. Why might bringing back the three to thrive, old-school practice be better?
  2. What would you have to change to unhook from social media and reconnect with your local church family?
  3. What if you committed to Sunday morning and one other weekly church meeting, e.g., small group? What would you need to change? How would you benefit?
  4. Perhaps you’ve enabled your child to drift from the church by creating a new social epicenter. Will you discuss this with your child if it’s true for you?
  5. What must you do to create, re-establish, or enhance a high view of the church in your life?

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Summing Up

The cyber effect is real. Though we won’t understand it entirely, we have enough data to respond differently than our culture. We are redemptive agents doing the Lord’s work. The devil has thrown us a massive curveball, but we can take it, reverse it, and use it redemptively. The question for us is whether or not we believe this is a big enough problem that needs our attention and intentionality.

  1. If you do, then what will you do? What will you change about how you use technology? What changes do you need to make right now, and what is your specific plan to change the tech culture within your sphere of influence?
  2. Will you review the questions I have asked you throughout this series with a friend, making adjustments as needed?

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