by Dave Hiser
BELLAIRE, MI – Going back in time when the internet was a dial phone, hanging on a wall or sitting on a counter with phone books, connections with each other seemed to be closer. One seemed to know the business or needs of the neighbors whether one wanted it secret or not due to a party line (a shared phone line in the neighborhood…while on the phone you would hear silent breathing or the occasional question, “When will you hang up?” or “Merry Christmas”). Borrowing sugar or butter from the neighbor was common, sitting down to discuss the latest news with them and having coffee, tea, or hot chocolate before leaving.
I remember spending more time in family-get-togethers and bringing a guest or two, staying overnight and having breakfast in the morning, helping out with cutting or stacking wood, repair on a neighbor’s roof or vehicle. We spent more time in God’s Creation than behind TV politics or Netflix (What is true reality?)
It seems different today. Wireless connections and social media have exploded to help make connections virtually possible everywhere. Yet, there are fewer moments to spend with a neighbor, friend, or family member, being involved with a life, a true sit-down, and shutting off social media while visiting.
I remember Christmas caroling and bringing good tidings of Christmas cookies or a card, remembering the Christ Child, Emmanuel, “God with us”. Moments bringing true hope & peace to those dealing with trials & tribulations, those experiencing death of a loved one, or those not knowing how to make their next payment. Spending a little more time with one another, instead of spending money to cover the time.
More than ever before, we need to get back to the basics, time to love your neighbor as yourself, time to love the Lord God with all our heart, soul, and mind. Disconnect the party lines and social media this Christmas, and connect our lives in and through Jesus Christ, the One who works all things together for good, to those who love Him.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Dave Hiser is pastor of Antrim Community Church (established in 2012) in beautiful Bellaire, Michigan. He and his wife, Vicki, along with their church have a heart to reach not only Bellaire with the Gospel but also Antrim County.