Why Facebook is Good
Make new friends
But keep the old
One is silver
And the other gold(classic children's song)
Friends are friends forever
If the Lord's the Lord of them(Michael W. Smith)
There's ongoing debate regarding the merits of Facebook. Like any system designed by human beings, it bears its strengths and flaws. But in a big picture sense, what it has meant for me is a chance to reconnect and establish the timeless treasure known as friends.
I've found friends from every era of my life. Some were close friends when I lived, worked or played near them; some I knew only in passing but know so much better now through Facebook. Some I argued with, some I hurt and some hurt me...but we have all grown up into people with a deeper perspective and they have become gold to me. The giant playground known as Facebook has become one giant backyard BBQ in a sense, a one-stop-shopping sort of mecca where on a daily basis I can connect with the people who have mattered the most to me and build new relationships as well.
Like any other tool meant for good, Facebook can be misused, overdone or hijacked by the ambition to promote one's self or one's cause or products. None of us are perfect and we will occasionally step on each other's toes. But what I am finding as I reconnect with so many is that we grow and learn through our successes and our mistakes, and that in the end we are for each other more than we are against each other.
Today is a great example of the value of Facebook. We are on the way to Nashville's famous Loveless Cafe to have breakfast with Sam and Teresa Silverman and their four daughters. Sam and Teresa were good friends when Jenna and I lived in Wilmore, Ky., where I earned my Master of Divinity degree at Asbury Theological Seminary. After we graduated nine years ago, we lost touch. How did I find the Silvermans again? Facebook. While driving from Indiana last night Sam sent me a quick note via Facebook, letting me know they were passing through Nashville on their way home to Georgia. Good stuff.
Friends truly can be friends forever. And like one of the angels in It's a Wonderful Life said, no person is as rich as the one who has friends.