My husband hated Facebook. Let me back up a step. He hates computers, not in a Unabomber, anti-technology kind of way, I mean he has one, and he uses one at work, but they are a necessary evil, on the order of the Bureau of Motor Vehicles.
Facebook, in his mind, was a timewaster. He didn't "get" it and quite frankly didn't want to. It wasn't for him. He didn't understand what the big deal was. It was a closed community. People who were on Facebook spoke their own little lingo that was as intelligible as Russian. (Jon could probably understand Greek, so THAT old metaphor is no good here.) It was irrelevant and he couldn't see any use for it in his life.
I tried to be the Facebook apologist. I know Facebook has its issues. It may not be what the designers envisioned and, yes, there are a lot of, uh, nuts there, but I use it everyday. People read my blog because it posts to Facebook. I keep in touch with all the 20-something nieces and nephews. It's a non-threatening way to touch base with folks who used to come to our church. I've reconnected with folks I haven't seen or talked to in 10 or 20 years.
He was not impressed.
So I sent an invite to join Facebook and suggested a couple dozen friends for him. Maybe he just needed a little encouragement, and this way he would have a ready-made bunch of connections, I thought. The friends all responded and Jon was swamped with 20-some emails. He was NOT amused. He was more irritated at Facebook. He was more confused at the "system". I had overplayed and lost him. I wrote him off as a Facebook hater.
I quit mentioning the FB-word. Instead, I'd relay a little bit of news, here and there. A new baby someone was expecting. A nephew's race results. It wasn't long before he asked, "How'd you find out?" Facebook. For weeks, not even daily, this went on. Until one night, after I'd gone to bed, alone at his desk, he joined Facebook.
I found out the next morning as MY inbox was deluged with messages informing me that everyone added a friend I suggested. Then I found him in the kitchen making breakfast. "You joined Facebook!" I said. He said, "Yeah, but I'm still not sure I get it." So I helped him with a few settings to make it more useful for him.
We haven't had that "I love this-best decision I ever made!" moment, but he's in there, working at it. I think he'll like it even more than the Bureau of Motor Vehicles.
Sooooo – (And this was HIS brilliant realization, not mine) How much is this like trying to reach people for Christ? It's a parable/analogy so the correlation is not perfect, but as believers, are we an irrelevant, closed community that outsiders don't get? Are we a bunch of time-wastin' nuts? Do we write people off as Jesus-haters, because they don't buy our pitch? Do we ever quit talking/selling it and just live it? Do we push too hard and annoy people or do we answer 'no' for them and never bother to ask?
Something to think about.