Goals Met, Friends Made, Moving On
I want to start this one with a humongous THANK YOU for making our first ever 24-hour charity stream a huge success. It's important to say that it was a success in more ways than just one. While our major goal of fundraising $3,000 for the United Methodist Committee on Relief was certainly one of the most exciting goals that we met, it was certainly not the only one. This also marked an incredibly successful potential in the connexion between three United Methodist streaming communities.
During the 24-hours where I wasn't sleeping, I saw many familiar and unfamiliar usernames talking back and forth and getting to know one another. Even since our charity stream wrapped up, I have continued to see names here and there poke into our Discord, our Twitch stream chat, and our newsletter list out of curiosity.
If you've somehow missed my incessant ranting about this - I firmly believe that the only viable future for the digital church is a collaborative one. If our objective 'competition' are the Markipliers and Ludwigs of the world, then the church doesn't stand an inkling of a chance on the Internet. Even our largest communities pale in comparison to the legends of the Internet that attract higher view-counts than the Superbowl. While views aren't our focus, the reality of our situation is that our reach would be best maximized and our community best built on the backs of a connectional and collaborative spirit.
The idea that 'no man is an island' is fully seen in the digital ties that bind the Internet together. Instances like our Nextream 24-hour Charity Stream are not only seen as successes to me by the amount of fundraising we make or the good we do or the connections we forge - it is also a successful vision for the future of the church online. As we literally pave the way to what God is setting before us, I am encouraged by the collaborative spirit of the United Methodist Church and by the digital leaders willing to set aside pride and raise up the digital Body of Christ.