“One of the great uses of Twitter and Facebook (and all social media) will be to prove at the Last Day that prayerlessness was not from lack of time.”
Boom. Such truth.
It’s interesting how the original idea behind the smartphone, and all social media applications that emerged because of it, was created to better connect us in ways that weren’t accessible before. We’re now able to “socialize” without worrying about international fees, physical distance, or any other inconvenient boundaries.
Yet, such convenience comes at a price.
Everywhere I turn, whether it’s at the grocery store, the kid’s play area at the mall, restaurants, and practically all day-to-day social settings, people are glued to their phones. And that’s when it dawned on me: I don’t want to be that person.
My husband and I have an unspoken rule for our family. No phones while we’re eating. No phones while we’re enjoying quality time with each other, with the exception of taking a few photos if we’re out and about. If I get lost in taking too many photos instead of simply enjoying the moment, he’ll gently nudge me as a loving reminder- which I’ve come to seriously appreciate.
That being said, it’s a little too easy to lose track of time browsing news feeds on various apps (Facebook and Instagram primarily), checking e-mails coming in every other minute, receiving notifications for my blog- the list goes on. And while social media has ultimately become a part of our culture in this generation, I don’t want it to translate into my family life.
Too much time on social media detracts from our quality of life. People are posting their edited highlight reels, which most (if not all) of the time, are inaccurate depictions of their actual lives. We can easily get caught up in comparing our unedited, un-enhanced, (completely normal) lives, to the over-saturated, perfectly angled illusions of life that we see on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, you name it.
As a believer, I’m thankful for the platform social media allows in sharing the gospel as a counter-cultural movement to get people thinking. It also creates a space for an uplifting online community, which is one of the primary reasons I launched this platform, to provide support and hope for women who are hurting + wrestling through hardships- to remind them that they’re not alone in their struggles.
But I’m well aware that social media is not the same thing as being social. Genuinely socializing. Building relationship. Being intentional and delving into deeper relationships with others in person is something social media simply can’t and never will replace. God created us as social beings- to be known deeply. Without technology in between us. Being present and in the moment is thus essential for our spiritual growth and the growth of our surrounding community.
So I want to challenge you, (as I’m applying this to myself as well), to spend less time on your devices. To be more intentional and present with your surroundings. To engage. Deepen relationships. Detach yourself from the unnecessary dependencies that technology has created.
For me, I’m challenging myself to spend more time in prayer and in the Word. John Piper hit the nail on the head with the quote I shared above. We have no excuse by saying we don’t have enough time in the day, if we still have time to spend on social media. It’s a conviction I don’t take lightly. Jesus comes first. And if I’m going to claim that in my own life, there needs to be action. Talk is cheap, and easy to do. But as cliche as the following statement is, it’s true- actions really do speak louder than words. So may we all practice what we preach.