Read this article yesterday and it seems to be passing around Twitter pretty well (Twittering in Church, With the Pastor’s Encouragement-Time.com). Reactions seem to be varied: from Bad Idea/Nuts… to Isn’t that just distracting? or irreverent… to Isn’t Mass already awesome?… to “Cool!” Here are my thoughts on this topic (in several characters OVER 140):
Overall I think the whole idea of tweeting in church is a GREAT idea. I think it is the natural extension of the way an entire generation (and some people on both sides of that generation) have learned to communicate and process information. The whole idea of “status updates” or “micro-blogging” is to share what one is doing, or thinking, or seeing, or hearing; To share in concise bits of info what is happening or engaging your attention right at the moment. For those that use social media to tell others about the significant and quirky things of their lives, why WOULDN’T they tweet in church?
Twitter is widely used by Christians and non-Christians alike. And many of the Christians who do, tweet and share regularly about what God is doing in their lives, prayer requests and answers, blog posts and articles that deepen and enrich and challenge their faith. Why not in a church “service”?
Expressions of worship. Tweets about what people are seeing and experiencing as God speaks and moves among the people. Sharing about the scriptures and the message of the teacher/preacher. And then kick it up another level when the leader/pastor/priest/speaker encourages or asks for twitter discussion to happen. Wow!
And the other amazing thing about all this? Whatever is tweeted goes PUBLIC. Believers, non-believers, the curious and the skeptic, the atheist and the agnostic, all get to follow along and get a taste of what God is doing among his people. The Spirit moves. The Word is proclaimed. Peoples spirits are touched with truth. Now THAT is cool!!
Now it is very true that one could misuse this amazing tool called Twitter. That one could focus more on tweeting than on listening to God. That one could focus on the social networking “noise” instead of being quiet. That one could have wrong motives. That one could play with one’s phone rather than worship.
And then it would be just like every other tool and instrument and gift and form of communication ever used in a church.
Conclusion: Let’s think outside the box and avoid being stuck in a religious, traditional way of doing church. Let’s ride the wave, and pastor it with wisdom and grace, and discernment. And let’s enjoy what God is doing with Twitter.
What do YOU think about Twitter in church?