I love social networking and the connectivity it affords. In many ways I feel extremely fortunate to live in an age where staying in touch with family, friends from high school, college and work is so easy. With all of the positives there are also some negatives…..especially for those who profess to follow Jesus. Here are 6 things that Christians need to stop doing on Facebook and Twitter.
Stop celebrating sin
It seems like this could go without being stated. Most professing Christians would agree, at least on Sunday morning, that sin is nothing to celebrate. However, when many Christians get online it is as if they slip into some sort of “anything goes” mentality. I would never argue that Christians should become hateful antagonists toward all things unholy but I will argue that Christians should be more careful and thoughtful regarding their posts and “likes.” We must refrain from celebrating adulterous affairs, unbiblical divorces, sinful cohabitation, acting on same sex attractions and substance abuse just to name a few. Anytime we type something like “good for you,” “I am so happy for you,” “you look so happy” and it is attached to something the scripture teaches as sinful we are effectively dismissing it entirely. Christians must remember that the Christian life was never intended to make us happy but rather to make us holy.
Stop picking fights for the sake of argument
This is especially frustrating when it is a believer engaging a non-believer. I see this happen quite often when Christians are engaging professing atheists in conversation. All too often it seems like the goal of the Christian is to win the argument rather than the person. When did it become a greater accomplishment to get in a good point or come across as “smarter” rather than being gracious and kind? We are to speak truth in love. It is the kindness of God that led us to repentance. Were you introduced to the saving power of Jesus through a hot headed, arrogant, demeaning professed follower of Christ? I didn’t think so.
Stop reposting/retweeting things that are inappropriate
Just because something didn’t originate with you doesn’t mean it is okay for you to repost or share. It seems like there are always things on my news feed that contain profanity/vulgarity. This doesn’t bother me when it comes from one of my friends who is not a believer. However, it never ceases to amaze me when a professing follower of Christ reposts or shares something that does not honor Christ. Pay attention to the words and the images and the messages that are a part of a post before you share it. We have to remember: what we post on our timelines communicates to others what we value. If Christ is truly your treasure then let’s make sure we represent Him well. On that note…..using modern day hieroglyphics ($!@*) to mask curse words is ridiculous. Your attempt to be clever still causes your reader to think of the word you are communicating.
Stop forcing your kids to live in a virtual aquarium
We are the first generation of parents to have social networking at our disposal 24 hours a day. As a result, we are raising the first generation of children to have every waking moment of their lives sent out to the world….only time will reveal the affects of our current patterns of communication. Christians – stop posting every detail of your child’s life on the internet. It doesn’t respect your child’s privacy when everyone on your news feed knows they failed a test, got in trouble at school, or presented you with a major discipline issue. I know the pushback is “my kids don’t have a right to privacy.” I disagree completely but if you want to hold that position may I ask you a question? Do you want (or would you have wanted) your parents, spouse and/or kids posting your most embarrassing, shame filled, awkward, bone headed decisions/actions on the computer for all the world to see? Then why would you think it is ok to do that to them? I believe part of raising godly children is to honor them by giving them space to be real human beings within the safety and confines of home.
Stop baiting people for attention
The FB posts and tweets that just say “please pray” or “I give up” or “everything is falling apart…..don’t ask” are unfair at least and potentially unbiblical. I agree that we should all use discernment in what we share with the world. There are certainly things/details that you and I need to share with other believers in confidence that do not need to hit our news feed. However, some people (and you know who you are) are simply trying to get their readers to ask more questions. It is a childish game of manipulation and information control. If you want/need prayer then by all means ask for it. If you are at the end of your rope then please get some help. If you are simply trying to bait people into giving you their sympathy or manipulating them into asking what is wrong……grow up.
Stop posting articles that prove your point
Yes…..I both see and appreciate the irony of directing you to another blog in order to prove my point. That said, my friend Riley Roberson shared some great thoughts on this topic on his blog. I urge you to give it a read https://rileyroberson.wordpress.com/2015/07/27/dont-use-this-to-prove-your-point/
There are many other things we could cover but for now, if we make these few adjustments, we will take a huge step in presenting the bride of Christ (the church) to the world in a much more beautiful way.