Oh give thanks to the Lord; call upon his name; make known his deeds among the peoples! Sing to him; sing praises to him; tell of all his wondrous works! Glory in his holy name; let the hearts of those who seek the Lord rejoice! Seek the Lord and his strength; seek his presence continually! Remember the wondrous works that he has done, his miracles and the judgments he uttered—1 Chronicles 16:8-12 (ESV)
I tweeted something yesterday. I’ve done it thousands of times before with little or no fanfare.
I didn’t think much about the tweet… just something I caught while I was in my Bible time and wanted to share.
I wasn’t too shocked when I got a response right away. Twitter is full of robots, after all. For example, if you ever mention Robocop in a tweet, you either get this:
But here is the response I got:
My initial reaction was to be insulted. I was trying to be encouraging, and here was this stranger (no doubt an atheist) going into business for himself on my tweet stream. I should have responded immediately with an angry retort, let him get in a response back so I know he read it, and then block him for good.
But then 7 words kept echoing in my head:
“30 and pregnant”
When someone’s real pain is involved, it’s not so easy to fire back with both barrels, is it? What do you say to someone who’s grieving and angry?
I prayed on the way to work. I thought all morning what my response should be. This was going to be the most important 140 characters I had written in a while, because my response could dictate what Simon thinks of Jesus going forward.
In reality, I could offer no response that would bring comfort, encouragement, or truth in that small of a space, so the best I could muster was this:
To me, that statement acknowledges three things:
1. I don’t know Simon well enough to preach to him from across the Atlantic Ocean about a very personal issue.
2. I don’t know about the grieving process enough to empathize with what he is experiencing, besides the fact that it is severe.
3. The door is always open.
Still not sure that I handled it adequately, but I’m glad that I didn’t go with the easily-offended kneejerk reaction that I initially had.
Have you ever faced a similar challenge (either face-to-face or virtually, like this)?Follow @JustSayRay