For many people social media has become incorporated into the daily routine of life. It has been a great thing and there are many reasons for this. But how often do we stop to think about how we are using this means of communication? Further still, what we are saying through it and why? Holding to a Luddite mentality is futile. Instead one of the topics Christians need to think through is how to engage with this platform of communication in the full view of an on looking digital society.
The watchful eye of society is not something new. Rome was the crucible of thought and political progress during the initial period of the church’s growth and expansion. To believers living in the city Paul tells them “do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind” (Rom 12:2). In other words the standard flow and trajectory of things which you see around you in Rome will not always (perhaps rarely) be to the glory of God, and therefore all of us need to think about what we are doing.
The historical context has changed but that does not detract from what Paul is concerned about. He desires Christians to think biblically about what they are doing. Social media is one such realm that we must contend with given our frequency of interaction with it.
Take for example the little bit of red in the top right corner of the Facebook app. It lights up and sadly it all too often lights up a persons day. More and more people are finding some self worth in whether or not people acknowledge there status update or last check-in. Each human life is worth more than a small red globe at the top of a web browser. God has created us in his image (Gen 1:27) and as such every life is inherently valued by God. Why pin so much of your self worth on the fads of other flawed people?
Photos which are posted show how amazing and full our life is. They are almost always projecting a forced image which we wish the world to see, not the reality of our normal lives. Doing this can fail to take into consideration someone who is struggling against depression, the single person who feels alone or the young couple who cannot conceive. Because all life is inherently valued by God we as Christians must be people who value others. “‘All things are lawful’, but not all things are helpful. ‘All things are lawful’, but not all things build up. Let no one seek his own good, but the good of his neighbour.” (1 Corinthians 10:23-24).
What were the last 5 status, tweets or pictures you posted about?
That might not be the easiest or nicest question to answer. However the topic must be discussed. If we are people who trust in Christ then every aspect of our lives must come under his authority and scrutiny; even our use of social media.