I’ve been a member of twitter and Facebook for a couple of years now.

I’m concerned with the way social media encourages self absorption. 

It allows a guy like me to posture as some kind of Mr. Fixit with my tweets, retweets, book quotes and self promotion. 

I struggle against being lured into the belief that everyone wants to know what I’m thinking, or how I feel about the world. I also struggle against the idea that my posting Scripture verses are in some kind of way encouraging to the average joe.

I have witnessed people making posts that are prayerful in nature. It is a very strange to me that we (yes, I’ve been tempted to and I am probably guilty of posting some kind of prayerful status) have come to the point where we offer prayers to the “Facebook god.” 

There are apps available now that are full of quotes to explain exactly how we are feeling and we don’t even have to be creative enough to contemplate how to explain our feelings. We can find something that strikes our fancy, hit the retweet or share button and go back to absorbing ourselves in the misery or the frustration of the moment. 

I have found myself perusing tweets and status updates to dive further into my self absorbed existence by measuring how much better my life is because of someone else’s retweeted or shared status from someone lower than I am. It is the complete fulfillment of the proverb, “Misery loves company.” 

I suppose that this social media thing can be some kind of catalyst for something positive. However, I don’t think it will be or is an accidental occurrence for good to come from it. It requires my finding some type of perspective on how I can share my journey through life with people who are interested in that journey. There is a fine line between, “I’m having a bad day but I think I’m gonna make it,” and, “That awkward moment when, I feel like everyone wants to know I have poor self-esteem and I’m going to try to cover it by appearing transparent.”

I mean come on, really? Is it really possible that the netosphere is boiling over with wisdom when every Tom, Dick, Harry, Janet, Sally and Suzy has a twitter, Facebook, pinterest, or tumblr? I don’t think so! In fact it seems that the trend is we are becoming more comfortable with random, unknown people with no standard in their lives other than the compass of self absorption to guide them.

People who have came to the point where they believe that true friends know how they think and feel without any communication at all. As if there is some ninja mind trick that bonds them as mind and emotion readers. It is really a pornography of the emotions. It conditions us to think that there is someone who will perfectly understand us just waiting to befriend us. We are looking for the acceptance and understanding in people that only God can give. 

My recommendation:

Find people that are willing to take the risk of doing life with you. Connecting, growing and serving with God and one another. Share all the mistakes, misunderstandings and conflicts that arise in relationships. This is the only way we can come to love one another…with all of our failings, emotions, misunderstandings and triumphs. It’s the ONLY way, the way that Jesus has been revealing Himself in the community of disciples for centuries.

We are to be absorbed into Christ’s body, not absorbed into our own lost existence following the compass of self-absorption.

 

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