Lurkers and Influencers
I know that majority of you reading this post are subscribers who read Eternity Cafe in your email inbox. You've never seen a blog other than the time you went to mine to subscribe and haven't been back to one since. I know - I was exactly the same before I started writing it.
So my blogger friends, please be patient with me for a moment while I provide definitions for two words you and I have come to know.
Webster's defines a lurker as:
1 : to lie in wait in a place of concealment ...
2 : to be concealed but capable of being discovered; to lie hidden
Bloggers define a lurker as someone who reads your blogpost, visits your blog, maybe smiles or sheds a tear, and then moves on without ever leaving a comment or reply. On rare occasion, a lurker may tell you in person how much your blogpost meant to them. But never leaves a written comment.
Do bloggers like lurkers? Of course! We love ALL our readers, and to be honest, I'm a reformed lurker myself. Would I like more comments? Vell, of course, dahling, who vouldn't?
But that's not really what this post is about as you'll see.
Webster's defines an influencer as
1 : One who, or that which, influences.
1 : Have and exert influence or effect;
2 : Shape or influence; give direction to;
3 : Induce into action
Most bloggers are writers (duh!), and in publishing, an influencer simply is one who tells others about a book. An author will often provide tips to be an influencer for his/her book, like writing a post or newspaper article, twitter or facebook, contacting local bookstore, etc. In fact, I'll be posting a review next week for one author who asked me (and hundreds of others) to be an influencer for her book. Her book is something I believe will be valuable to many so why wouldn't I want to use my little corner of the internet to share it with others? And someday, maybe you will be an influencer for my book (if it ever gets finished!)
But again that's not what this post is about.
So get to the point already! You may be lurking but I can hear you!
Okay, here's what I'm getting to.
In God's kingdom, there are lurkers and influencers, too.
Lurkers may go to church, listen to Christian radio, participate in fellowship, but rarely share the gospel with someone. They drink in, but seldom give out. They receive a word from God, but don't encourage anyone else. They may even keep their faith completely concealed from the outside world.
Influencers are like Andrew who upon meeting Jesus immediately fetched his brother, Peter, to meet Jesus too. Or like the woman at the well who after speaking with Jesus ran to the town to tell everyone about the Man who knew all about her. They're like the band members I met in a bar 30 years ago who had met Jesus the month before and were so excited to communicate their great news. Christ's influencers know they have something valuable that will be more valuable the more it's shared. And they look for opportunities to influence others to join God's family or to grow in His family.
It's true that some people are natural born influencers, and some natural born lurkers. But with the desire to become an influencer for Christ, comes the ability.
If you knew that a bomb was on an airplane, would you warn the passengers lining up to board the plane? That's the attitude to have to be an influencer.
But being an influencer doesn't always require speaking. An old adage says "Preach the gospel at all times, and sometimes use words." It is our daily lives, decisions, behavior that is the biggest influence to those around us.
But if you're anything like me, there are times that you wanted to speak, to encourage, to share, to influence, and you kept silent. Would you allow me to influence you now :)
Here's what I did:
Step out with baby steps.
A comment here.
An "I'll pray for you" there.
Seize a moment.
Then build from there.
They share freely and give generously to those in need.Their good deeds will be remembered forever.They will have influence and honor. Psalm 112:9
ps - and just in case you thought I was kidding with the blogger lurker definition, when I went to the dictionary I found it it's for real. Here it is, from Websters, lurker definition #3:
3 :to read messages on an Internet discussion forum (as a newsgroup or chat room) without contributing
pps - and if you've been lurking around Eternity Cafe, I'd much prefer this blog to be a dialog than a monologue. I'd love to hear/read your comments - and respond to them. So please pull up a chair, grab a cup of coffee, and let's chat! And feel free to influence your friends to join in!