The Apostles’ Desire To See Others Face To Face

With (nearly) everyone carrying, or having with in easy reach, a digital communications device, we have so many ways that we can communicate, if we want. We can communicate privately, with groups or the whole world nearly anytime we wish. We like to think all this is really new and world changing, but we seen it all before. When the telegraph came, nearly every benefit and criticism that is said about the internet was said it.  (ref. Victorian Internet by Tom Standage)

Going back further to classical antiquity, letters communicated, privately or to groups, with those far away vast amounts of information. But even those who wrote inspired words, the most effective words possible, preferred to be with brethren face to face. 

1 Thess. 2:17“But we, brethren, having been bereft of you for a short while—in person, not in spirit—were all the more eager with great desire to see your face.”
2 Jn. 12“Having many things to write to you, I do not want to do so with paper and ink; but I hope to come to you and speak face to face, that your joy may be made full.”
3 Jn 13,14“I had many things to write to you, but I am not willing to write them to you with pen and ink; but I hope to see you shortly, and we shall speak face to face. Peace be to you. The friends greet you. Greet the friends by name.”

Our words sent from can be good, helpful, edifying and should be sent by call, text or note. But they only supplement face to face interactions, they can’t replace them.