Imagebearer’s Weblog

The Only Evangelism That Works: Be An Imagebearer

Book Review: Digital Disciple

I picked this book up for free on Kindle and after just a few pages realized it was nothing like I expected it to be. It is a good read and worth the time if you are having trouble with spending too much time online or if you want to be able to work with those who are. I was looking at the book because I was interested in what others are doing to make disciples online. Anyway, it is a quick read and helpful in several ways. The author’s concept is correct, we must maintain physical, face to face, relationships in order to make disciples as Jesus instructed us.

The author is not anti technology, he met his wife in an online dating situation, but he realized that he was addicted. I must say though, his addiction was to gaming and not just social media. Gaming has never interested me so that part of the book was helpful to see what others are doing.

Here are a few hi-lights for me in the book.

“Following Jesus Christ is first and foremost about connection, about the arms of love reaching from the cross to embrace everyone. The Word became flesh in Jesus Christ in order that we might see more clearly the connection that God yearns for us to have with one another and with God. The Internet offers wonderful opportunities for connection, but they always come attached with the danger of isolation.”

“Like most things in this life, we can’t separate the danger from the opportunity; we can only hope to trend toward the opportunity while trying not to ignore the nature of the danger.”

“The trouble is that the speed of innovation has kept us from pausing, breathing deeply, and taking a hard look at technology’s effects on our lives. Consider that a hundred years ago, people dashed and dotted with the telegraph and wrote long correspondences in perfect cursive. Seventy-five years ago, they shared a phone line with half a dozen neighbors and sat in front of the radio in the evening. Fifty years ago, they had their own telephone numbers and televisions. Twenty-five years ago, mobile phones and personal computers had begun the big, boxy stage of their evolutions. Fifteen years ago, my computer spent an agonizing forty-five seconds doing a fuzzy R2-D2 impression while attempting to dial up a connection to the Internet. Ten years ago, my family got our hands on a shiny new piece of technology called a cable modem, and the connection tripled in speed. Today, broadband allows connections of ease and immediacy. The breadth and depth of content online have now matched the blazing download rate; indeed (and I’m saying this with only the slightest hyperbole), I could live my whole life virtually and never notice the lack of fresh air and exercise. We communicate more quickly, more frequently, more globally (and often more anonymously) than ever before. The Internet, once a harebrained idea hatched in a military think tank, has pervaded our lives and our society. Removing it would be like amputating not an arm or a leg, but a central nervous system. I know I’m not alone when I confess that, while I don’t live my whole life virtually, I do almost everything online: shop, check baseball scores, read the news, watch TV, play games, chat with friends, research my sermons. I even met my wife through some combination of divine intervention and the Series of Tubes.”

“Seeking God in both the real and the virtual worlds makes us digital disciples.”

“The new house church meets when a thoughtful blog post spurs vigorous and amiable conversation about Jesus Christ. The new house church meets when a tweet links to a website exposing the plight of child soldiers, and the partner charity raises thousands of dollars as a result. The new house church meets when a prayer request goes out via a Facebook status update, and within hours three dozen people are praying for the friend in the ICU. Following Jesus Christ is about connection with God and with one another. The new house church—meeting on blogs, forums, and feeds across virtual space—connects the faithful to one another. And when we meet in the name of Christ, we discover that Christ is there as well.”

“Remember, we can’t separate the danger from the opportunity; we can only hope to trend toward the opportunity while trying not to ignore the nature of the danger. Most things in life present this kind of tension, and the Tech is no exception. But attentive followers of Jesus Christ live within this tension every day. Indeed, the very symbol of the Christian religion is an instrument of suffering and death, which Jesus redefined to be a symbol of hope and life. The cross is the ultimate reminder of the danger of separation, of abandonment, of isolation. But when the power of the Resurrection kept Jesus in relationship with us, even after his death on that cross, it has become a reminder of reconciliation, of union, of connection.”

 

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May 30, 2011 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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