January 08, 2005

Community through a glass and darkly

I had a wonderful experience today--I got to meet for the first time someone I've been friends with for a couple of years. That probably sounds strange to you unless you've had the opportunity to meet in "real life" someone you've carried on a relationship with in cyberspace. I've dialogued with Lucas, the theoblogian of My Four Walls fame and Tame the Monster, for probably close to two years; that's forever in the blog world! We've exchanged email, chatted, and commented on each other's writing. We've operated in the same blog-circles. If you'd have asked me yesterday, I probably could have spoken at some length about Lucas, his passions, and his gifts.

A week or so ago I got an email from him suggesting that we meet in person over coffee. When we moved to Waco, it never even occurred to me that it would put me within comfortable driving distance of my blog-friend. We met today and shared a couple hours of great fellowship--a true blessing to me, as I hope it was for him.

As we were leaving, it occurred to me that I had gotten to know Lucas better in just a couple of hours face-to-face than I had in a couple of years online. That was when the Scripture passage came to mind:
Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.
The verse was like a little jewel from God, and as I turned it over in my mind, different facets shone:
  • The cyber form of community we experience through blogs, chat, email, forums, and the like is true community, but it is rudimentary at best. Until technology progresses, it is a poor substitute for realspace community.
  • Praying, reading Scripture, worshiping, and taking part in the sacraments have a great deal in common with our cyber-community. They allow us to know God, but only in a rudimentary way. We will know God better after a moment in heaven than we will after a lifetime of relating to him through the spiritual disciplines.
  • In a similar way, we will experience community with one another in a deeper and fundamentally more satisfying way in the coming kingdom than we do here today.
Thanks, Lucas, for a great time. I'm eager to do it again. And thanks, Father, for giving me one more reason to look forward to death.


At 7:26 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

leaving with brother and nicky for california.....tried to call today, you must have met with lucus....will talk soon,love....yes face to face is incomparable


Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home