Sometimes it seems like we are living in a nightmare with no way out. I'll be in the midst of working on a project and my mind briefly thinks, "I want to eat somewhere or run to the store." Then I remember, I can't do that.
We are living in a pandemic, I remind myself and I wake up mentally and get back to work. But once again the feeling of a waking nightmare flows over me when I think about what so many are experiencing far beyond the momentary frustration of not being able to run to Trader Joes without thinking. Many people have family members and friends who are hospitalized and perhaps dying.
I've been working on things for church communicators to share during this time, what I hope are encouragements, below are links to some I've done:
Recently I've challenged myself to do more.
I've asked myself and prayed, "what is the most important message we need to communicate at this time, when life is fragile and many are afraid?"
The answer, for those of us who know Jesus, is Jesus and the reality that he is with us and for us, now and forever.
To communicate that reality in all its fullness, I know will take more than one series of images or messages (I'm working on them), but I decided to start with the idea that no matter what happens, we have an eternal home with Jesus. In addition to the Instagram images that go along with this, which to me is summed up in the statement "Welcome Home" I've added a "micro-blog" commentary to go with them. Both follow and are free for you to use.
In addition to the images and text, I realized this is a new way of doing Instagram for me (beyond selfies and quick quotes) and to explain that, I also created a video that explains it and how to do it, including an introduction to microblogging. The best part of the video for me, is that in it, I show you how you can create Instagram content on your desktop. I'll have the video at the end of this post as well as in another on its own to show you how to do this.
Instagram Images of Welcome Home
These images are sized for Instagram and are in jpg format, so you can use them in any way you want, online, web, email, etc.
To download a zip file of the images, click the following link: Welcome Home In life or death
Microblog on the topic of "Welcome Home" from Jesus
This content can be copied and pasted into Instagram comments or anywhere else you use the images, such as part of an email newsletter.
Jesus talked about welcoming his friends to his home with God just before He died on the cross for them. It was confusing to them because they knew He was talking about a home after this life, an eternal home with God. How could He promise to take them there?
Jesus responded that He could not only take them there, but he was the only way to get there.
That Jesus is the only way to God has been one of the most offensive and confusing claims about the Christian life to the Jesus’ friends then and to people now. But it makes perfectly good sense when you realize Jesus was not talking about some spiritual insider club anybody who was good enough or rich enough could belong to if they wanted to, but about His home with God.
God created humanity to live with Him. God and people walked together in a perfect garden until humanity decided they did not want to believe God or do what He said. We call that action the original sin and the consequences were far worse than they imagined.
The relationship was broken; the Creator and Owner of the Garden had every right to ask them to leave. He did.
Wandering on their own, homeless from God, humanity did not do well.
We have no idea why this is what it took to heal the breach between God and humanity, but Jesus had to die on the cross and rise from the grave to reconcile us to God.
If we accept that as true, tell God we are sorry for our sins, and want Jesus to be our Forgiver and Leader, we become a friend of Jesus and we are reconciled to God. We get to live in His presence on earth and in His home when we die.
We do not have to be afraid of anything in this life because of that and at the end of it, we will close our eyes and when we open them, we will hear:
“Welcome Home—to your forever home.”
Video about Instagram on the Desktop and Microblogging
I was so excited when I figured out how to do this. I do love my mobile phone, but I'm literally all thumbs (and not accurate thumb-typing ones) on it.
I sit at my computer many hours a day creating content for you and to create content for Instagram in this way is great fun for me.
Here's how I do it: