I admit that I'm technologically skeptical. As a result, I'm always nearly the last person to get the latest gizmo. Whether it's a cell phone, laptop computer, digital camera, MP3 player, or GPS, I'm usually the one saying "But what do I need that
for?" The only reason I joined Facebook was because a certain Christian publishing house I work for strongly suggested it.
So then, what business does a nice, old-fashioned magazine editor like me have singing the praises of a brand-new social network devoted to prayer?
Here's what: The Pray! Network online social community is an amazing resource and opportunity to resource and connect people who are passionate about Jesus and talking to God. When people actively participate in an online community, it becomes an incredible clearinghouse and meeting place where all kinds of things can happen. Relationships between like-minded people can form. Ideas can be shared. Creative synergy can happen. Resources can be highlighted. Speakers and prayer retreat leaders found. Events can be publicized. Ministries showcased. Questions answered, problems solved.
I loved Pray! magazine! I still miss it and wish its days hadn't come to a close. There are still wonderful things magazines can do that I doubt the Internet will ever be able to replace. However, there are also things that a magazine cannot do that a social network like the Pray! Network can. Here are a just a few:
• A magazine can't connect two people who live in Boise who love to prayerwalk. Or two people in Albuquerque who want start a 24/7 prayer room for their city. Pray! Network can help prayer-minded people make those connections.
• A magazine has a limited number of pages, so it can only offer a limited amount of content. In other words, a magazine probably won't post YOUR thoughts and ideas because there's too much competition for space. Pray! Network can. And will!
• A magazine can only publish every so often, like maybe six times a year. Pray! Network can publish 24/7.
• Because of those time limitations, magazines cannot offer up-to-the-minute information. So if you just found out about a great prayer event in Atlanta that happens next week, you could never get that information into a magazine because you'd need six months advance time. But thePray! Network can.
• A magazine's reach is limited because not everyone can afford to subscribe. But the Pray! Network has potential to reach hundreds of thousands of people--for free.
Though part of me hates to admit these weaknesses of magazines, another part of me thrills that we have the technology to accomplish things magazines publishers never dreamed of.
I'm so very pleased to let you know that the mission and vision of Pray! magazine lives on, in this 21st-century medium. As always Pray! is all about deepening your relationship with God through prayer. We're about equipping and mobilizing prayer leaders. We're about keeping you informed about what God is doing through prayer around the world. And we're about uniting the body of Christ through prayer.
We like to think of the new Pray! Network as your one-stop place for all things prayer. I hope you'll find that to be true--and that by adding your voice to groups, blogs, discussions, events, and the other great opportunities you'll find here--that you'll make it a welcoming, lively, helpful, resource-rich place to visit often. Please remember to go to the main page and click on "Take the Tour." When you do, you'll find everything you need to start engaging.
I'm really glad you're here.