Dear Neighbor – Media
“Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?” And he said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets.” ~Matthew 22:36-40
Dear Media Neighbors,
I am a part of an organization called The Joshua Commission. Our mission is to disciple Kingdom Men as they face the different faces and aspects of spiritual warfare, and we need your help.
I grew up fascinated with the likes of Walter Kronkite, Barbara Walters, Sam Donaldson, and so forth. I also always enjoyed your counterparts at the newspapers and the way they brought attention to local issues. You are a member of my community and my family; we invited you to our living room every evening so that you can share the stories of the world. As you sign off every Friday, like you have done for the last several decades, you let us know, “We made it through the week.” You say, “We” because you want us to feel like you are in these daily struggles with us, like you are at the kitchen table with us digesting our meals along with the pertinent issues of the day. You also provide us with that feel good human interest story to highlight that there is a lot more good in this world than evil.
You and your colleagues are the Fourth Estate. You strive to hold our leaders, our businesses and ourselves accountable. Without your reporting and coverage, the vast majority of Americans would never have witnessed the atrocities of Jim Crow. Yet, you showed the images of local governments weaponizing fire hoses and German Shepherds against American citizens who simply wanted equality. You had the courage to put on the front page of your newspapers Emmitt Till’s open casket. Your relentless pursuits exposed Watergate and the full extent of the Iran-Contra affair.
I also recognize our society consumes news much differently today than we did 5, 10, 15, 25, 30 years ago. 20 years ago, most major cities had two separate newspapers. Now, the overwhelming majority of the population does not read a physical newspaper, and many newsrooms have gone the way of Blockbuster Video. For many younger people, social media is the sole source of their news content. I understand that sensational headlines and click bait are key drivers to bring in an audience and revenue. Additionally, we no longer have shared news sources. 25 years ago, we relied on the local newspapers and news stations for our information. Today, we have 24-hour news networks, Internet sites, and social media. We do not focus on the shared local media. Instead, too many of us traffic in the media sources that are consistent with our echo chambers. Unfortunately, we no longer have a “need” to read the same stories or headlines as our next door neighbors.
You are a part of our community, and a trusted voice in our homes. All across the country, we invite you into our homes on a daily basis. We need you to stand with us to draw a spotlight on the ills and injustices that plague our society, so that we can address those issues through truth, love, grace and compassion– the way Jesus instructed us to do so. We want you to come alongside us, not through the lens of a donkey or an elephant, but through the lens of truth so that we can work together to unify our broken nation. You are our neighbor and a stakeholder in our community. We know that your relentless pursuit and your desire to showcase societal ills will allow us all to rise if we work collectively. This is your neighborhood too; you just don’t report on it, and so I’m asking you to be our neighbor in this endeavor.
The Joshua Commission