Sometimes it seems that social media is trying to take over our lives, that we are obsessed with something that ten years ago did not even exist. How strange. Technology pushes forward to give us ever-new gadgets on which to waste time.
But used at its best, social media can be a huge blessing. And that is how I feel today. Blessed.
My mother had a massive stroke three days ago. She wasn’t expected to survive. After a slow, crazy wait for more news, and then a mad rush of packing and trying to get my mind around ‘massive stroke’, I took off to Atlanta from Lyon, France, praying I would get there in time to say ‘I love you’ and ‘Good-bye’.
And somewhere in the midst of the tears and confusion, a message or two was posted on Facebook.
Now, as I sit in Mom’s ICU room, with nothing but the beeping of machines to keep me company, I turn to Facebook and scroll through all the hundreds of people who have left comments and ‘liked’ something that is horrible. But I know what you mean. You are with me in the suffering.
And this is Facebook at its best. You tell me you are praying. You remind me of how much you love my feisty little mother. You are from all over the world and you have been in some way a part of the Goldsmith family spanning almost 80 years. You are family or a lifelong friend. Maybe Mom was your Girl Scout Leader or Mom taught you horseback riding or Mom accompanied your chorale to Europe. Or you served spaghetti meals to the homeless beside Mom. You went to school with Mom, or me, or Daddy or my brothers. You are a fan of Georgia Tech, you are a member of Second-Ponce de Leon Baptist Church.
You are part of Paul and my missions’ organization and we’ve prayed each other through many other tough times.
We met in grade school or at church or in youth choir or college or in missions or in Europe or you read one of my novels and told me so.
I read your names and I know you. I know you even if we’ve never met. I know that your heart beats and loves and cares.
I read the messages, scroll through the ‘likes’ and cry. I am held up by the power of your love and friendship. I know the profound and unsearchable power of prayer, and I feel it as I wait for Mom to wake up. As I wonder if she will ever walk outside again, on two sturdy legs.
Humans always find a way to respond to crisis, to tragedy. The heart finds a way. Social media gets the word out more quickly, but the heavens are never limited to these man-made inventions. But these inventions are tools. And today, as I wait, I am very, very thankful that I am connected to all of you in this time. Thank you for being the best of humanity and taking the time to close your eyes and offer a prayer to our great God for my amazing mother.
The whole Goldsmith-Musser family sends thanks for your love and prayers.
“Bear one another’s burdens and thus fulfill the law of Christ.” Galatians 6: 2