How much of what we do is to get attention and approval of others? A lot…watch the world around you and see how much we status update, text, or take a picture of then post it to the internet for others to wait for immediate feedback. Depending on the response, it dictates how good we feel about ourselves. Right? So why do we allow technology to inform us of our value? And when did it become more important than honest connections with others? We are beginning to lose the art of forming honest, real, raw relationships with each other and instead settle for edited, filter, glorified online versions of ourselves. Ultimately, we have become afraid of being ourselves.
I broke up with Facebook for a year for this very reason. I was tired of feeling superficially connected with hundreds of people and putting my worth and time into maintaining an edited version of myself. I ended the volatile relationship because I wanted to take the time to get to know the real “live” versions of people and I wanted them to get to know the real version of me including the ugly pictures, and not so perfect parts.
Reevaluating your social media’s purpose and use is key to understanding how you will be using it. I look around and notice how much we have used technology to elevate ourselves to those who are reading or following. Everything we do because so important to share and show off to others. Before you post think about how it can be received and ask yourself, does your social media provide connection or exclusion? Does it provide benefits to others or to you? Otherwise, our sharing begins to look for others to validate how awesome your life and activities are on a daily basis.
Now, don’t get me wrong, social media sites are great for reconnecting, keeping in touch, and quick communication which makes it great and convenient. It is when it takes the place of our sole interactions with each other that it begins to make me concerned. Have you thought about how much time and value you place on updating and maintaining your online version of yourself over the time you take to really interact with people in person to develop deeper relationships?
I think we need to fight the urge to hide ourselves behind a computer screen and start forming authentic relationships with each other in which we die to our needs, wishes, and wants and instead desire to give up all to others. This is the kind of authentic relationship that Christ has given us. He gave everything and sacrificed His life, so that we may gain all. Donald Miller articulated this best in his book Searching for God Knows What when he said, “It makes you wonder if we have fashioned a gospel around our culture and technology and social economy rather than the person of Christ.” We have made Christianity about ourselves in our relationships and what others can give us. Our social media profiles are naturally inwardly focused which means we have to fight harder to keep it from informing us of what our worth is and looking for it to fulfill us.
Since the fall of man, we were depraved and the only thing that can help us with this depravity is the love of Christ. When we give up everything, repent, and make a commitment to be a follower Christ that is when our love grows for the one that gave us life. Don’t look towards a Facebook profile or Twitter account to disguise your need to fix this depravity. It will never work, and it will never be enough. And then someday you will have to break up with Facebook like I did, learn from that relationship, and start all over again.