Monday, February 6, 2017

Three Reasons to Consider a Social Media Sabbatical


Lately the social media experience has been about as enjoyable as a voluntary root canal. If you identify with that statement, you might want to consider a social media sabbatical.

Three Reasons to Consider a Social Media Sabbatical

The internet is a terrible place to spend your time.

Some would argue that social media is a necessary evil for engaging with the current culture.

Those people have a point.

If you manage a business, maintain a platform, or promote a brand, you really can't avoid logging on regularly. Even if you don't really enjoy spending time online, you may still maintain social media profiles just to keep up with friends and family members you would not hear from any other way. 

That's not what I'm talking about.

There's a difference between visiting a place and making it your home. Think of drainage ditches. I benefit from them, and I'm glad they exist; but I don't rest the seat of my emotions in them.

Not that I'm comparing the internet to a drainage ditch. Much.

Either way, if your time on social media is having an undue impact on your emotions, it's time to take a break and gain some perspective.

Social media places undue weight on the the present.

Contrary to a lot of popular jargon about the present (it's really all we have, we should make it count, etc.), we know that life cannot be lived merely in light of the present. Thoughtful people consider the past and plan for the future. This is especially true for followers of Christ.

We absolutely do not accept that the present is all there is.

If reading today's news cycle depressed you, make time for Revelation 21. It's hard to stay depressed when you meditate on the fact that one day, the throne of God will descend from heaven and he will make all things new.

I'm not calling for a hands-off approach to the culture, however. That's neither logical nor scriptural.

But it's vital to remember that while Christians do engage the culture by living and sharing the Gospel, we absolutely do not allow our emotions to be blown about by each shift in the wind.

Yes, this world and all that is in it will fade away.

But be of good cheer.

Good will triumph. Evil will not.

Justice will rule.

The King will come in his glory.

And we will see it.

Rather than meditating on the latest inane comment being disseminated on social media, meditate on that.

You can’t keep up anyway.

People will always have something to say. Some of them will be right, and some will be wrong. Some will be worth your time, and many will not.

One thing's for sure: the machine will never stop.

But you can.

Understand that I'm not calling for complete ignorance or a full retreat. It's important to know what's going on in the world, how it's impacting your circle of friends, and what (if anything) you can do to help right the ship.

It is not, however, your responsibility to keep up with every person's opinion and form fully-articulated public stances on every single issue unfolding moment-by-moment online.

Absolve yourself of that responsibility.

It is exhausting and unnecessary.

Conclusion

I think we could all benefit from a full-scale social media time out. In fact, I'd love to give the entire internet a warm drink, a soft blanket, and a long nap.

Sadly, that's impossible.

It is possible, however, for you to grant yourself that courtesy.

Consider it.

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Photo Credit

By Julia netaffinity (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons


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