I got a new iPhone a couple years ago, and one of the things that new iPhones do NOT have now is a port for headphones. This is old news to the computer savvy among us, I’m sure, but to remedy this problem, Apple created something called a dongle, a short cord that connects my headphones to a different type of port on my iPhone so that I can use my headphones as I once did.

The experience of having to buy a dongle to connect my phone to my headphones made me think that we live in an age where we are forced to connect in new ways that were not even invented or known before. This tendency toward new ways of connecting is not limited to technology, but is also felt in connecting with one another. Very broadly speaking, people are not as available as they once were, people do not respond as readily to the old ways of connecting, and there is a sense that people have a very low tolerance for interruption.

We feel this especially in the Church where things like door-to-door evangelism, cold calls on land lines and the delivery of paper newsletters in the mail are outmoded or obsolete. So what is the Church’s dongle? What is the new way of connecting? For me personally, I have connected more with fellow members of my church more often through text messages. They are no longer seen as intrusive as in the past and people can respond to them when they have time. I also notice that people are more aware of posts we make on social media and we can connect to people in our church body through comments on posts or through conversations at church later on about what was posted. I have the feeling I know what is going on more with people through social media when I see them in church, so conversations are easier to start. We live in a time when we can be creative with our connections with members of the Church and the results can be just as impactful or even more impactful than they once were. Keep an eye out for making new connections in the name of Christ.

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