I’ve known about Facebook for a while now as I’ve heard my kids talk about it. My first thought was oh, no, not another social network! Don’t people have enough to do these days but to sit around cultivating invisible relationships? It’s true many people find such relationships easier to carry on than face to face ones. I also figured it would be one more great way to waste time, or at least to spend time that I should be spending on something else. Besides, as a still-active missionary, I already had enough relationships to keep up with, including lots of long-distance ones and some online ones. I didn’t have time to add any more.
At the same time, I knew I would sign up with Facebook eventually as a means of spreading the word about my book, if and when it gets published, but I figured I could wait until such a time as I knew for sure that was going to happen. Then this week I got an invitation from a long-time friend, and next thing I knew I had gone and done it. Yikes! And the next thing I knew, friends were coming out of the woodwork. That was cool, though I soon learned my daughter was putting them up to it. “Oh, but that’s the only way they’ll know you’re there!” For now, I have to take her word for that. The truth is, it has been a pleasure to make a lot of connections, including old friends and former students.
So now the challenges for me are keep it in balance (i.e., not let it become my master), to learn enough about it to make it really serve me, and to find ways I can perhaps use it to be a blessing. And would you believe that God threw in a little confirmation that this is a good move and the right time? A real-life friend gave me a heads-up about a blog just posted by a writer about the many ways writers can use Facebook to network and get the word out. By jumping in now, I have time to learn about those things so that when the time comes to use them, I’ll be ready to roll.
If you’re a new reader of this blog, be sure and read the two paragraphs at the right that tell about this book I keep talking about. You may even want to go back and look up some earlier posts about what’s going on with it. And feel free to make a comment.
I never cease marveling at how things have changed in my lifetime. Growing up in a missionary family in central Africa during WWII, we went months without any connect with the outside world--not just relatives far across the ocean but even coworkers a few hundred miles away. Now I can not only “talk” to family members on other continents, but I can peek in on the lives of friends all over the country and the world. If you’re too young to have experienced that difference, you’ve missed something.