Has Much Really Changed?

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Ecclesiastes tells us that there is nothing new under the sun.  So true.  Hate, prejudice, bigotry, racism… it is not new.  Sin is not new.  Ecclesiastes also tells us that was has been done, will be done again.  We should bear not surprise that these sins still run rampant.

This picture, was taken in 1992.  Twenty five years ago.  I look at it and I see Charlottesville 2017.  Things really haven’t changed that much, not in the heart.  But the boldness, perhaps has displayed itself in unprecedented ways.  The hoods, cloaks, and shadows are withdrawn, sin is exposed.

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For there is nothing hidden that will not be disclosed, and nothing concealed that will not be known or brought out into the open. ~Luke 8:17 

Sin is out in the open, and with it has come a reckoning.   Parents and friends are seeing faces splashed across the news, their children and loved ones displaying their hate for the world to see.  Those secret things hidden in hearts are being confirmed as sin stares us in the face, desiring to make us meek and hide in response.  But let us not be meek, but BOLD as we stand up for what it good, honorable, holy, and righteous.

Creator God,

We pray that these wearisome things, that weigh us down… that seem too big or frightening to tackle down, let us see them diminished in to the shadow of your greatness.  Your word is true, that which has will be again.  We cling to that as a promise that Jesus will come again and overcome sin and death, destruction and division; standing victorious over his foe.  Lord, we ask for you to protect the eyes, ears, and hearts of the little children so that they may not be turned by the words of hate that others teach them.  Let them find joy, peace, love, and goodness in You.  May they have eyes to see, the way you see.  May they look upon all of your people, regardless of the color of their skin as sister and brother, created in the imagine of our Precious Father.  Bind the serpent that hisses in their ears, for he will be crushed once again.  Sin was here before my time, our time… but our future remains.  For you know the plans you have made for us, that is the future we await… waiting and yet praying LORD JESUS COME!

In this darkness, let us be light.  In a sea of hate, let us be love.  In a crowd of fists, let us be an embrace.  Let our churches and homes become a city on a hill, refuge for those who need safety, a fortress against oppressors, and a battle ground of prayer.

In Christ’s holy name we pray,

Amen.

 

Social Media Series – #2 Twitter

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By Gena McCown, Women’s Ministry Council Co-Founder

Twitter is a unique form of social media, because it restrains your posted information to a specific number of characters.  It’s purpose is short, jets of information that someone wants to get out quickly.  Over the years, it has found new uses… but for Women’s Ministry the original purpose I find to be the best use.

When you set up your Twitter Account, you have two options to consider Public and Private.

The benefit of Public is that you can get your information out to anyone.  Which can also be it’s downfall.  You can’t control who is seeing the tweeted information.  If you choose the public option, this would not be the best place to share events that may have limited seating or personal prayer requests.

The benefit of Private is that it allows you to keep control over who sees the information you tweet.  You can limit it only to those women who the information replies, and thus foster bit of community.  The only real negative, in my opinion, is that it takes a bit more work on your end since you will have to approve each request to join.  (How are you going to verify if this person is in fact part of your church).

Since Twitter is pretty cut and dry, I decided to share some ways that I believe Twitter can benefit your ministry.

* Planning an outdoor event, and a deluge of rain hits the area?  Twitter can be a fantastic way to get cancellation or relocation of events information to the women attending.  When you know bad weather is possible, you can give the women a heads up to keep an eye for up to the minute updates.

* Planning a retreat and on your way to set up you see that the roads are closed?  Twitter can be a great way to let the women know to reroute their travel plans and give them new directions.

* Live tweet from events, so that the women who couldn’t come can glean some highlights.  Not only do I like tweeting for this purpose, but it also lets those fence riders know what they missed out on.  You my find better (and earlier) commitments to your next event.

* Tweet out upcoming important dates for the Women’s Ministry, link to conference registrations, or tweet urgent prayer requests.  You can also use it to share answered prayer requests and encouraging notes.

* Use Twitter to remind women of the suggested scripture reading for the week, send out  a memory verse, promo upcoming small groups and bible studies, introduce new WM team members, etc.  It’s a great announcement platform, because it is short… sweet… and to the point.

* Twitter is great vehicle for asking questions too.  Your women can use it to ask for book recommendations, resource ideas, etc.  Or, they can use it to pass on things they are finished with… like a bible study, devotion book, or video.

* Use Twitter to toss out a quick lunch or dinner invite, beach/lake trip, shopping trip, etc

* Tweet out links to articles worth reading, youtube or soundcloud links for Christian music, or other external resources that impact the women in the church (like your local newspaper/station).

An important thing to note is that if you want Twitter to be used, you really need to set the example as a WM team.  You can link your Twitter account to your Facebook page, which would allow for the women who are not as acquainted with Twitter to see how they are using it.  Make sure to remind the women that you are adding Twitter as an avenue of communication, and be clear with the women about HOW you are going to use it.  You don’t want women to assume it is private and post personal details.  Nor do you want them to assume it’s public and a place to extend community wide invitations or information.

It may take some time to get the women on board, but it can be a great resource if you choose to use it.