7 Ways To Engage In A Large Facebook Group

A few months ago I was asked how it’s possible to stay relevant in large online groups.

My knee-jerk reaction was, “Do you need to be relevant?”

Then I thought some more about the question. Was it coming from a place of need? A need for friendship, or a need for community?

Real Relevance

We all like to feel relevant. Whether it be in real life (IRL) or online (2D). As I thought about the question, I realized didn’t have an answer for this person.

They seemed to think my small presence in the big pond was relevant, but I wasn’t doing anything in particular. Then another person asked the same question.

There must be something to this. I need to answer.

But first I had to answer the hidden question: What is relevance anyway?

Relevance is connection. Connection to the question or issue at hand. Relevance is understanding the importance of the matter. In other words, being knowledgeable about the topic of discussion. In an online discussion, relevance is being able to communicate your knowledge within the discussion.

Here are some important points.

Ways to Remain Relevant

  • Interact
    Seems simple, right? Not necessarily. How and when to interact with others in a group can be tricky if you don’t pay attention to what others in the community are doing. Sincere interaction and sincere posting is important. Ask questions and make statements relevant to the topic/reason the group exists.
  • Be Selective
    Don’t comment on every post. This also seems obvious to some people, but when you feel that Facebook fever, it can be tempting to comment on everything. The more selective I am with comments, I find I have better 2D conversations.
  • Be Prudent
    Be prudent with your advice. (Unless you’re writing a blog about offering advice!) Here’s a complex algorithm for when you’re stuck: Only offer advice when the person posting is actually asking for advice. Did I mention, opinions should be kept to yourself unless the poster is asking for your opinion?
  • Kindness
    Everyone likes kindness. Yes. Everyone. Rude comments can turn a thread nasty very quickly. You may certainly disagree with the original post, or with a comment posted by another group member, but your brash argument is not going to sway anyone to your view. But beware unintentional rudeness. You think you’re being funny, but remember the humor can quickly get lost in high-speed internet communication. Civil discourse seems to be a lost art in this age of social media, but it is possible to have a civil and beneficial discussion online. And when it happens, it is a beautiful thing.
  • Think
    Think BEFORE you post. This goes for all communication. In 2D and IRL. Don’t open your mouth without thinking through your comments, and don’t hit “enter” before reviewing your post or comment. Once you put it out there, you can’t take it back. Ever. And if you are at all hesitant, don’t post!
  • Community Rules
    Above all else, remember you are part of a community. Whether there are a couple dozen people in the community, or a couple thousand, you’re all there for a purpose. Try to stick to the main reason you joined the group.
  • Newbies, Lurkers, and Cool Kids
    Look for the new voices, and the shy posters. Encourage them. New member always like to feel welcome, especially in a well established community. Some of the new voices may be people who have always been lurking in the group, but finally feel comfortable enough to post and comment. And as far as the “cool kids” are concerned? There aren’t any. There isn’t a cool kids table. Don’t create one.

Is it important to be relevant? I’ll let you decide for yourself. But if you want to be an integral part of a large Facebook community, these steps will certainly help you.

Did I miss anything? Keep interacting, and have fun with your online friends!

Regular Prayer

“When you pray to God regularly,
irregular things happen on a regular basis.”

Mark Batterson, “Draw the Circle”


Friends, this is where most of us mess up.

How many of us pray on a regular basis?

I know people who pray regularly. I know prayer warriors. I look up to them. They have incredible stories.

Find the prayer warriors around you. Ask them about their practice of prayer. Ask them to tell you their stories. Be amazed and encouraged by them.

And then go do the same!

I don’t know about you, but I learn best through repetition. While I don’t want to encourage prayer simply because you want to continue repeating a habit, I do want to encourage the forming of the habit of prayer. Not out of need to check an item off a list, but out of a deep desire to learn and come closer to God through daily conversation.

My point here is we need to develop the habit of setting aside time to have a conversation with the Father. He wants to hear from us, and he wants to speak to us. Developing the habit of daily speaking and listening will undoubtedly help us hear clearly the words he has for us.

Do you want to know exactly what God the Father saying to you? Develop the habit of conversing with him. The more you commit to the habit, the better you will understand the language he’s using.

 

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In a few weeks I’ll begin posting about some of the tools to use to learn the language of prayer and better develop the habit of prayer. I invite you to subscribe so you don’t miss out.



Acquiring a Prayer Language

Conversation with God

I was (am) horrible at learning foreign languages. I tried German in high school, and Spanish in college. I passed, but I don’t know how. I think the Spanish prof in college was simply ready for me to be finished. You know, put me out of my misery.

Now I’m jumping back in! It is time to once again acquire a new language. This time though, I have a better chance of success. I have a deep down desire to learn this language to the best of my ability.

PRAYER LANGUAGE
Trying to acquire a prayer language can seem as daunting to some people (or more) as acquiring a language like Spanish, or German, or Mandarin.

It takes work.

It takes consistent study.

It certainly takes a desire to master the language.

In his book, “Draw the Circle – The 40 Day Prayer Challenge,” Mark Batterson states, “Acquiring a prayer language is as arduous as learning a foreign language.” (p.224)

Wow. You know what? He’s right. For someone like me, who struggled with languages, this statement could be daunting. It could be all it takes for me to stop trying.

But I won’t.

There is a much bigger benefit to learning this language. And the God of everything wants me to learn it! He wants me to struggle through the learning and the halting conversation. He wants me to spend the necessary time to learn the words. He wants me to spend the time needed to understand the words He is speaking to me. Nothing was ever said about it being easy.

The words, “Lord, teach us to pray,” were uttered by Jesus’ own disciples. If they needed instruction in how to learn the language, we certainly do as well.

The depth of our conversation and relationship can always grow deeper and closer. I believe our desire to grow closer to God is the most important factor in mastering this language.
As I journey forward, I hope you will join me in learning this language.
Be well.

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In a few weeks I’ll begin posting about some of the tools to use to learn the language of prayer and better develop the habit of prayer. I invite you to subscribe so you don’t miss out.

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