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Our Makeover

8 years ago written by

Every time Facebook changes its look, several friends complain: “I like the old Facebook better. I may quit for good.” “I can’t find anything anymore.” “That’s it! I’m switching to Google+.”

I’ve had my share of frustration about the social network’s constant evolution. If Facebook never changed, however, it likely wouldn’t be worth more than $200 billion. It might go the way of MySpace.

Facebook initially was designed for university students, but it’s now popular among members of the 40-plus crowd (myself included) who join groups like “Growing Up Free Methodist” to reminisce about experiences decades in the past.

Unlike Facebook, founded in 2004, this magazine debuted in 1868 (a year earlier if you count some sample copies prepared before the first official issue). Long before Mark Zuckerberg started a campus website titled Thefacebook, Levi Wood started a periodical titled The Free Methodist, which later was renamed Light & Life Magazine. Denominational founder B.T. Roberts eventually became editor (while simultaneously editing his Earnest Christian magazine). Wood’s creation continued to thrive thanks to Bob Haslam (Page 15) and other Free Methodist journalists.

My office wall has a poster showing 12 of this magazine’s different cover styles over the years. Change is nothing new for longtime readers.

With the latest tweaks, we’ve tried to incorporate reader suggestions we’ve received since our last redesign four years ago. We’ve granted the request for a return to the standard magazine size rather than the square format. We’ve put English and Spanish articles into the same edition to increase our reach and relevance among our nation’s 37 million Spanish speakers (

Most of my friends have stuck with Facebook despite its changes, and some new friends have joined. I hope you’ll stick with this magazine through our changes too. The appearance differs, but our message remains the same: “In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind” (John 1:4).

Downloadable PDF: Light + Life April 2015

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