I circled the word Change on my bulletin today. I put it there. I was writing words as fast as I could to keep up with the spoken words flying from the pulpit. It was not because Pastor Don was talking fast, because he wasn’t. He was purposeful and almost slow in his speech. You could hear his heart loud and clear in the message. You could also feel the urgency and the necessity in the sermon he titled, “Why We Can’t Stay Here“. His voice and words asking not for what is impossible, but what may be considered difficult to do. “We can’t stay here and do the things the way they have always been done”, he tells us. Us pew sitters listening as he talks. He lets us know that we’re losing people. We’re losing children. We have to step up. We have decisions to make. We have to decide to change the bitterness and hurt residing in heart,head, and spirit and apply the healing balm of forgiveness. We have to change in more ways than one.
Personally and in general, I’m always up for change. So I liked circling the word, Change. I liked staring at it all bold and beautiful squeezed between the lines of the order of service in the bulletin. I feel like I am often in some kind of sick minority where members seem to enjoy a change of pace, a change of scenery, a chance to travel to somewhere new. I like the challenges change can bring and the problem solving that ensues. I like seeing what’s around the corner and I love seeing how change can make what is good even better. Now, don’t get me wrong, I like some things the same too. I like knowing where I head to work every Monday through Friday. I like knowing what bed I sleep in at night. I love having a husband who doesn’t really like change at all and keeps life stable. I’ve also noticed that some of my best friends are of the steady sort and I figured out over the years that I must need and enjoy the balance that they bring to my life.
The message today, though, is not about me and my need to change, although I most certainly do. It wasn’t about any one individual. It was vision casting laid out courageously. It was a call to our church to change. Really, all of us have to, any organization, any church, any people group that is trying to not only stay relevant, but to grow. Today, change is rapid and change is required. Here are some social media statistics from the book, Socialnomics, How Social Media Transforms The Way We Live and Do Business.
1. Over 50% of the world’s population is under 30.
2. 96% of Millennials have joined a social network.
3. 1 out of 8 couples who are married met via social media.
4. It took radio 38 years to reach 50 million users. It took TV 13 years to reach that same number. It took the internet 4 years, the Ipod 3 years, and Facebook added 200 million users in 1 year. Ipod application downloads hit 1 BILLION in 9 months.
5. Ashton Kutcher and Britney Spears have more Twitter followers than the combined population of the following countries: Sweden, Israel, Switzerland, Ireland, Norway, and Panama.
6. Generation Y and Z consider e-mail passe’. Enough so that some universities have stopped distributing email accounts.
7. You Tube will load 100+ hours of video in 4 and 1/2 minutes.
8. Kindle books outsold paper books on Christmas.
9. 24 out of 25 of the largest newspapers are experiencing a significant decline in circulation.
10. Social Media isn’t a fad, it’s a fundamental shift in the way we communicate.
So all this brings me back to that sermon today. That message I heard. That change that needs to happen in our church. That shift that needs to change in the way we communicate God’s truth. Yes. My church. My place of worship, in the town I live, and where my kids have grown up. How will we continue to reach them? How will we reach their children? How will we reach other children? How will we not only say we are willing to change, but also show that we are willing to change? I see other words I wrote on my bulletin this morning while I was listening. While the Holy Spirit was prompting. While my toes were being stepped on in that really good way when truth gets sent out and finds it’s target. Words that say, “Our faith needs to be active and alive”! Yes. It does. Indeed.
You can find more about Forgiveness here: https://livinginthemomentsthatmatter.com/forgiveness/
You can see the Socialnomics video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0eUeL3n7fDs
You can leave comments and beautiful thoughts below.