Many of us are on social media and share bits of our lives through Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or other apps. Others of you have elected to avoid social media altogether. I’ve been on Facebook for 10 years, and the good I get from it so far outweighs the bad. It’s one of the main ways I stay in touch with our missionaries, who update their “followers” almost daily with pictures and stories of their work. It’s a great way to see what’s going on in the lives of family and friends. And, as a minister, I use Facebook to make announcements to church members and share pictures I’ve taken at Northside events.
If you have chosen to use social media, let me ask you a question. When you post a picture, video, or comment, do you ever pause to think about why you are about to make that post or what message it will send to those who see it?
Pictures – Are you going to post that picture of yourself at the beach, in the gym, or with your latest purchase to make others jealous, to show them how wealthy you are, or to show off your well-toned body? I’m not saying it’s always wrong to share those types of pictures, but have you taken a moment to consider your motivation for putting them out there?
Once a picture has been shared with the world, have you ever wished you could take it back? Have you posted pictures of someone else that they might not appreciate? Will your kids be happy 10-20 years from now with all the images of them forever etched in digital stone?
Comments – You may find this hard to believe, but I am currently Facebook “friends” with 1001 people. Many of them are former work associates, high school friends, or even people I’ve never met who know someone I know. When I make a comment on Facebook, 1001 people have the opportunity to read what I post. I wonder… do my comments reflect the love of Christ, or do they bring dishonor to my Lord?
Do you ever make statements on social media that you would never say to someone in person? Have you ever left the impression that you are just about the only right-thinking person left in the world? Do all of those who disagree with you fall into the “stupid” category? What names do you use to refer to people who disagree with your religious or political point of view?
Your social media posts reveal something about you. What messages are they sending? How brightly is your light shining?