Six degrees of separation

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Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,  and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” ~ Matthew 28:18-21 +++

The six degrees of separation isn’t quite as relevant as it was not that many years ago. Six degrees of separation is the theory that everyone and everything is six or fewer steps away, by way of introduction, from any other person in the world, so that a chain of “a friend of a friend” statements can be made to connect any two people in a maximum of six steps.

In researching the six degrees of separation I learned that the phrase pretty much got its start in 1929 after Frigyes Karinthy first wrote about it. Shortly after World War I, there were the beginnings of a lot of new ways to do things. This included the best ways and theories on optimal design of cities, city traffic flows, neighborhoods and demographics. As the world became socially connected with the advent of cellular phones and computers, it became a smaller one in which a person could connect with many others from all around the world with very little effort and time. A person could become ‘friends’ because of a friend of a friend. Or even a friend of a friend of a friend, from the other side of the world.

This was how I became a contributing writer for FGGAM. When I had made the decision to publish my book, “Why Are You Here?” back in the fall of 2013, I asked the pastor that is the leader of the Bible study group that I attend if he would like to write the back cover of my book. I did that because that pastor, Kevin Koop, had seen how my own faith had grown over the time that we had studied and prayed together with the other guys in our group. So Kevin was a real-life friend of mine and that was the start of my connection with you, the reader.

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Facebook it a big contributor to the six degrees of separation as that is how I was ‘introduced’ to Kevin in the first place. Kevin has a friend named Jude that I have become Facebook friends with in the past couple of years because of Kevin and the Facebook posts that both of them banter back and forth with. When I could see how Jude’s faith was growing with what he was posting on his Facebook page, I asked Jude if he would want a copy of my book. Jude said he did so I sent him a copy.

Jude has a friend who is quite integral to FGGAM. That friend is Rick Stambaugh. After I could read and see Rick’s own faith we also became friends on Facebook. I have enjoyed seeing the evidence of Rick’s faith that he records on his wall and also on the pages for FGGAM. With the addition of Rick to my world we are getting closer to the reason I am writing this post.

Rick Stambaugh is friends with Pastor Dewey Moede who was instrumental in starting FGGAM. I was seeing many things Dewey was posting on Rick’s wall and I enjoyed what I was seeing so much that I sent Dewey a ‘friend’ invite too. Pastor Dewey messaged me not long after this to ask if I would be interested in becoming a contributing writer for FGGAM which was obviously a task that I accepted. Now we are getting really close to my core message.

Pastor Dewey is also friends with another contributor to FGGAM that I’ve become ‘friends’ with too. She is Shonda Savage and I have exchanged messages of four young men in prison because of these people I have named above. Shonda got me interested in writing to Bryan in prison. Some might remember Shonda and I both writing different pieces about how Bryan was a self-avowed atheist who had rejected Satan and embraced our Lord Jesus as his Savior a couple years ago. When I could see how a person could help change another’s life by being a part of it, I knew I wanted to write about the six degrees of separation to illustrate how it can work for the better, even if we don’t know that person in this life.

Bryan has told me that my letters to him are encouraging him and giving him hope. And it is with hope that we might know God in a better way. I love getting letters from my guys in prison. I am getting one every week now. It makes me smile and makes me happy to know that the little things that made those connections happen are the reason for us exchanging letters.

Its a small world in so many ways. We have the ability to reach so many others with our tools of social media. I hope and pray that others will be able to see the positives of these six degrees of separation. The separation doesn’t really qualify as the six degrees from years ago in many ways. Sometimes we are only a step or two away from a person we would like to know. And with Jesus, we are only a kneel and bow at the cross along with a prayer away from.

So is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it. ~ Isaiah 55:11

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