06 Jun “How Long Is Your Snapstreak?” by Steve Hutchins
No one who knows me would confuse me with an “early adopter” with respect to technology. I’m still a member of that remnant that still uses a flip phone. At a recent Elder Board meeting, I became flummoxed when asked to read from the scriptures on an iPad. I managed to stumble to the correct passage with a moderate degree of difficulty but was helpless without my resident tech assistant, Bob Ford, to rescue me from drowning in embarrassment by commandeering my tablet to change the archaic version to which it was set to a more modern, readable one and also increasing the font size to something more akin to what Mr. Magoo could read. I’m ignorant along the lines of Bill Belichick when it comes to the latest iterations of social media (During the Patriots’ march toward their 5th Super Bowl win, Coach Belichick famously betrayed his cluelessness on the subject as summarized here (https://www.youtube.com/watch.)
Now that I’ve sufficiently established my techno-handicap, you can imagine my reaction recently when I was introduced to the phenomenon of a “snapstreak.” Since I don’t actually live under a rock, I have heard of the social media platform Snapchat, but knowledge of its existence is the extent of that knowledge. The article that introduced me to this phenomenon (https://www.wsj.com/articles/whatever-you-do-dont-let-your-snapstreak-die-tonight-1495637570) explained the sometimes-arduous lengths people will go through to keep their snapstreak going—a snapstreak being defined as an unbroken succession of “snaps” between the same two people within a 24-hour period. Yes, on some (perhaps most) level(s) this is all humorous and silly, yet to me, it speaks to the human need to be/feel connected to the people we love. And THAT human trait is a vestige of the fact that God made us in His image.
That is why, when we first come to know Jesus as Savior, we tend to have this insatiable appetite for God’s Word, prayer, and fellowship with His people. Hardly a day goes by when we’re not involved in one or more of these disciplines. It’s almost like a snapstreak with God. Previous generations of Christians might have termed these encounters as “devotions” or “quiet time.” This generation might prefer “God chat time” or some other as-yet-unknown-to-me modern iteration. As many of us learned from Shakespeare, “A rose by any other same would smell as sweet…” (From Romeo and Juliet). It’s not what it’s called, but what it is that matters—and it matters to our spiritual health—that we’re connecting with God on a daily basis.
So how is your snapstreak with God? Have you gone more than 24 hours without connecting meaningfully with your Creator and Savior? If the answer is “yes,” it’s time to start a new one. The Bible tells us “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.” (Hebrews 13:8) The world changes. Cultures change. Perhaps someday Snapchat might even be displaced by some other emerging social media platform, horror though that may be to some. Our God doesn’t change. Neither does our need to connect to and have our soul nourished by Him daily. Time to extend that streak or start a new one if you’ve lapsed, no technology needed!!