3 Ways to Show Love on Social Media 

Deception, pseudonyms, trolling, employing tricks to increase followerships – all of these strategies have gradually seeped into our lifestyles and gained grounds in this era of tech and social media. If you missed our previous post on how social media have complicated our lives and relationships, hence, making it impossible to identify true and genuine love, read this.

Using social media tools to spread the gospel creatively, like what the Christian Blog Ghana has been actively doing in the past seven months, have revealed the competitive nature, indifference of followers and the various tactics or tricks used in this world of social media. These attitudes, sometimes, kill the spirit of a brand and this post aims to suggest some of the ways that we can show love and encouragement to each other on social media:

Let’s focus on the Overall Goal

This suggestion goes to individuals and brands which share similar aims and goals – let’s focus on the overall goal. The Christian Blog Ghana. for example, aims at using creative means to propagate the gospel, therefore, when it finds brands in the same niche, it does not hesitate to share, like and follow them. However, that is not the case with all brands, for instance on Instagram, individuals and brands swarm onto a page when there is some new content. They follow, like your post and page and, astronomically increase your number of followers within a few minutes and in a matter of seconds, the number of followers reduces drastically.

 

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What is this tactic called, if it cannot be equated to a trick? It is even more shocking to find brands in your niche (Christian, in our case) in this activity of ‘following and unfollowing.’ Why is the focus on using this means to make people believe we are following them while we unfollow them surreptitiously or when they are not looking? Why are we competing for numbers? Don’t we share the same goal of spreading the gospel (Matthew 28:19)? Are we not supposed to encourage each other and hold each other’s hand to do that? Will it be about the number of followers we had on our social media pages when Jesus Christ comes for the second time?

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Let’s Show some Kindness by Reading and Liking Content

It is quite challenging to promote Christian content on social media. For whatever reason, it is very difficult to get friends, family, and followers to like, comment and share your posts. This is not to say we thrive on your commendation but it shows us we do not have dormant pages. It gives us the ability to interact with you and it helps us understand how the Spirit is influencing you through us.  Please interact with us, We would love to know if you are being blessed by our content or not. If there are changes you wish to see on our pages, do share them with us. Love is kind (1 Corinthians 13:4) – remember?

Let’s Support One Another

Let’s help each other to achieve our various goals. There may be individuals and brands who may not necessarily be in our niche but are using their platforms to push worthy causes – let’s give them the little push.

On WordPress, let’s follow other blogs, let’s read, like and comment on each other’s posts. On Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter – let’s support one another by liking, remaining loyal followers and commenting on each others’ posts. Let’s  avoid seeing each other as competitors but rather one big community promoting different causes.

Today, we celebrate a huge milestone:

200 Followers!

We have 200 followers on Instagram. God knows it’s been tough out there. Instagram is that world, where people follow and unfollow your page constantly, so with 200 followers gained organically within seven months of actively posting, it calls for a celebration. Don’t you think :)?

In this Era of Social Media

In this era of sophisticated technological and social media tools like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and the rest, where the world has been reduced in size and space, how can we understand the meaning of true love?

When we do not spend quality time to know each other but with the click of the button on any smart device, find the details of someone’s life – their thoughts, their likes, dislikes…

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When we are made to feel so special because a million and one friends are reminded it’s our birthday, hence, the need to wish us…

When we sometimes do not feel the urge to wish someone a happy birthday but are afraid when it gets to our turn, they’d also not send us wishes…

When we intentionally post certain content for those group of ‘friends’ to see…

When we tip vendors to post our wedding photos and ensure they go viral for our ‘friends’ to see…

When there is no clear difference between our personal lives and what we post online…

When we have specialised in ‘branding’ ourselves so well that when others get onto our social media pages, they feel their lives are too boring and must do something about it…

When we are forced to look and act in a certain way every time because that is what attracted our followers to us…

When we sometimes check out the pages of our friends and former colleagues and they make us wonder which route of life we took…

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When our lives have even been reduced much further through the creation of ‘closed’ groups where we seem to find solace in the arms of people we hardly know…

When we see people in trouble but are concerned about getting their information online than helping them…

When we allow the photos of dead bodies and the manner in which people lost their lives to go viral but, when it comes to a church programme, the last stop for that poster will be our devices…

When we do not care so much about verifying details and the consequences they might have on victims, so far as, we are the first to report that juicy piece of information…

When we do not really care about the emotions of other people but say it anyway, because it will attract a lot of comments and reactions from our friends and followers…

When we ask people to say ‘Amen’ and share posts by putting fear in them…

“Share this to all your contacts or lose that special person in your life.”  

“If you want 1 million dollars, type Amen and share with 5,000 people.” 

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When some of us are shy to declare our faith publicly because of what our friends and followers would say or do?

“Are you a Christian? No, I believe in God but not in organised religion… 

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In this era of social media, it’s really hard to tell who is that genuine friend or brother or sister. The next time we decide to post on social media, remember this:

…“You are the ones who justify yourselves in the eyes of others, but God knows your hearts. What people value highly is detestable in God’s sight. – Luke 16:15

Of Ebony, Life and Death

Teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom – Psalm 90:12

In less than three days, I’ve been forced to think of the whole phenomenon of life, death and life-and-death. First, it was the devastating news of the death a cousin who suffered some complications after delivery. Baby is fine but the mother is gone.

While recovering from this shattering news, three young lives have also been lost in a gory accident. This incident included the 20-year-old musician making waves in the country at the moment – Ebony and her friends.

The news of their death has saddened me tremendously because of their ages and the manner through which they lost their lives. Nobody deserves to die in childbirth nor an accident. Every young person deserves to go through life, age graciously and die after 70 years. Isn’t that supposed to be the case or what we normally say? It is high time we saw our lives as fleeting – it could be taken away from us anyway.

It is our prayer that the good Lord will comfort their families. Let’s not be quick to judge or propound theories (as some of us are so quick to do). The question of their salvation is between them and God since He is the omniscient one. Instead of questioning their deaths and being judges, quick assessments should rather be done in our lives. The Bible says;

And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment. (Hebrews 9:27)

Death is a natural process and we will all go through it one day. Just like the second coming of our Lord, we do not know the time and day it will happen, therefore, the need to be more intentional in how we live. Let’s not wait until some ‘future’ to start living out the purpose for which Christ has called us for. We need to see our lives as a loan from God and the loan recoverer  (God) may come for His money at any time and of course, with interest. How are you supposed to impact the world?

If our lives are this fleeting, why do we hold grudges against someone/people? What is the point in being so competitive while the world can accommodate all of us? Why do we accumulate for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal (Matthew 6:19)? Why do you keep postponing those Godly ambitions to a later date when the loan recoverer can come and take his money (life) at any time?

This post is not to make us fearful but rather designed to put us in a reflective and sombre mood.  We need to make each day count, starting now.

NB – Is it possible to convey this message to the recipients of our taxes? Can we show some sense of urgency in our developmental processes? Can there be a responsive ambulance service,  dedicated health workers who are enthusiastic about what they are doing because their salaries are sufficient and other systems are working in their facilities? Can the road contractors also be more deliberate in their work?

We will all die someday but the proper systems can slow this process a bit.

The Love of an ‘INVISIBLE’ God

‘God loves you’ is probably one of the most common phrases used by Christians. It is used during church services, when winning souls, to console people in difficult situations, when things are going well and in our daily conversations. These words have become so common that they are gradually becoming a cliché. Have we actually sat down to meditate on the meaning of this simple words? A God, who is unseen, loves me (insert your name)? Is that possible? How does this love manifest?

One of the most common ways of defining the love of God is through the biblical salvation story of Him giving His only Son to come and die on the cross for our sins (John 3:16). There are other scriptures that describe this love that God has for us including:

God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us (Romans 5:8

Give thanks to the God of heaven, for his steadfast love endures forever (Psalm 136:26 )

Apart from what we know from the Bible, the love of this ‘invisible’ God is so ubiquitous. It is expressed in the most simple forms that we are beginning to take them for granted. It is now a normal phenomenon to wake up from bed feeling very healthy and forgetting to say ‘thank you’ to the giver of life. Through our own efforts, we go through days, months and even years of not hearing any bad news. We have worked so hard in school and are gainfully employed, therefore, we are not able to decipher the meaning of God’s love. Everything has become so normal that every gift from God is being seen as results of our hard work.

Before you categorise all of God’s gifts as ‘normal’ things, remember there are people who choked on their food. Some people board buses and are not able to reach their destinations. There are 28-year-olds who are dying of heart attacks but you wake up each morning and are able to go through the day so effortlessly.

You remember the day that guy proposed to you or when the lady accepted your love proposal? The way you heart flipped when you vowed to spend your lives together. You ensured your life and day revolved around each other. It is time to transfer this same measure of love or even more to God, the giver of life and the provider of every gift.

As for the love of this ‘invisible’ God, it is indescribable but it can be seen in the most minute forms. If you haven’t spent some time today to say ‘thank you to God,’ this is your chance to do so.

 

 

Pause. Evaluate January 

Development experts spend quite a substantial amount of their resources on monitoring and evaluation when executing a project. In fact, they hire officers in charge of this unique area even before the project starts. Why not at the end? This is because they do not underestimate the role of monitoring and evaluation. Measuring their successes and failures as they go through a project ensures they are charting the right course and perhaps, saves them more resources. If we determined to make good use of this new year, we can as well take a cue from the development experts – monitor and evaluate our progress with our various goals monthly.

Pause. Let’s go back to January 1. It’s been 30 amazing days already. How have you fared? Have you started working on your resolutions yet? Are you spending more time in prayer and reading the word? Are you working on acquiring that new skill, reading those books already or building yourself up in a specific capacity? Are you practicing that good saving habit? How about that new business? Have you started working on the proposal? If you haven’t started, it’s not too late to put down some goals, of course, with the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Don’t allow the year to pass by without you placing some demand on God, the Father.

One practice the Bible encourages is the writing down of our visions as stated in Habakkuk 2:2,

Then the LORD replied: “Write down the revelation and make it plain on tablets …

There are certain ideas and dreams that God has laid in our hearts. You may choose to call them resolutions, goals, dreams, ambitions or aspirations, but, take a paper or your phone, state them and include how the Holy Spirit has directed you to work towards them. You can only know the mind of the spirit when you spend time praying quality prayers.

This month, we learnt that the Holy Spirit makes everything possible for believers, hence, it is important to involve God in our plans. We also learned that whatever you ingest is what we bring out as Christians, therefore, we should be wary of what we allow into our senses. Let’s learn to build ourselves up by taking in the right stuff – which will help us achieve our bigger goals. It could be reading more books or watching videos that can build our intellect.

Take some time and cast your mind back to the beginning of the year and take an assessment. Do you like how you’ve spent the month? If you do, keep it up! If not, let’s involve God and work towards the various ministries that God has before us.

It’s been a great start but we trust that God has more in store for us. Let’s hold Him by His word!

New Year Resolutions – Are they relevant to Christians? 

Back in Senior High School, a very good friend and I used to joke that our new year resolutions must be more terrible than the previous year. We resolved to be more ‘sly’ with our seniors, ‘cut’ school functions and simply break more rules because to us, in the previous year, we had been good but new year resolutions meant doing things differently.

Even though we were not confident enough to put into practice those resolutions, the perception we had added some excitement to the way we approached our seniors. That was also a wrong mindset and a not-so-good way to start the new year.

New Year resolutions are often defined as a tradition where individuals resolve to achieve certain goals (positive) and quit undesired behaviour.

Some of us, while we grow have stopped believing in new year resolutions because of personal reasons. We used to make lists of things we wish to achieve in a particular year but halfway, we realised we could not achieve them, hence, the decision to do without them.

We’d love to lose weight, continue our education, find better jobs, start our own businesses, find life partners, move out of our parents’ homes among others. These are some examples of new year resolutions.

The new year does not automatically change who we are. We do not become superhumans because the clock struck 12 midnight on 1-1-2018 but as Christians, we believe God’s mercies are new every morning and He’s a faithful God (Lamentations 3:22) who has the interest of His Children at heart. That is the reason He’d like to see us succeed each day and that is the reason we believe in positive new year resolutions.

From a personal experience with this blog, anytime I listed ideas of topics, I realised I was able to follow through proving right Habakkuk 2:2:

“Write down your visions on scrolls…”

Do not just fold your arms and watch the year pass by. Prayerfully seek the face of God on what He’d like to achieve with you in 2018 and list whatever He reveals to you. Go back and ask Him how He’d like you to achieve them. Hold God’s hand every day through quality prayer time and word study and see if you will not achieve what you had on that new year resolutions’ list.

We’ll be here at the end of the year to take your testimonies.

Happy New Year!

Like a Child

Babies are beautiful, delicate and adorable. Their process of formation through to their growth could simply be described as a miracle. Observing their growth process is a way of appreciating the perfect God that we serve. They also exhibit other traits which Christians must adopt.

This attractive feature about babies is their trusting nature, particularly in interacting, with their parents or caregivers. They tend to believe so much in the abilities of their parents or caregivers. In the presence of their caregivers/parents, they will not go hungry or thirsty or cold or experience any form of discomfort.  Even when they are treading dangerously by moving on the edge of a couch or bed, they have smiles on their faces because they know with their parents or caregivers would protect them from any form of danger. They simply trust in the abilities of their caregivers making it possible to liken their behaviour to what Jesus Christ wants believers to portray in Matthew 6:25-30:

“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life? “And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. 

Have you seen a baby getting worried about when or where their next meal is going to come from? They only think of the present – I am hungry, just feed me. After they are fed, they start to smile and jump about, not caring about what is going to happen to them in the next few hours.

This level of trust or faith that babies have in their parents/caregivers is what every believer should have in God. The point where we totally rely on Him for all our needs and supply. When we have no cause to fear or worry. When we know our daily bread would be provided by Him.

As we grow, life seemingly does a number of things to us and our level of trust in God simply depreciates. We begin to look everywhere for assistance except God. A situation which keeps filling us with more fear, worry and anxiety.

Worrying has never added anything to anyone’s life. Praying and listening to the Holy Ghost is the best way to battle everything. Is it barrenness, a disease or poverty – what are you battling with? Is anything too hard for the Lord (Genesis 18:14)?

Let’s take this simple exercise – find a child, preferably below two years and spend a full day with him/her in the presence of their caregivers. It would be a lesson which would greatly impact on your faith.

Do you have questions bothering on your Christian walk or are in need of someone to speak? Are you looking for prayer partners, reach out to us via our email christianblogghana@gmail.com or on any of our social media channels. We’ll be glad to assist.