Social Media: My Battle

I love social media. I really do. I’ve met a lot of wonderful people via Twitter and Facebook. In fact 2 of my best friends in the world I met through Twitter. I wouldn’t be Co-Pastor of the church in which I serve right now if it wasn’t for Twitter. I relish the connections I’ve made, the long lost friends I’m now in touch with because of technology…I love the glimpses I get into peoples personal lives…I love being able to share tidbits of beauty God shares with me throughout the day.

All of that being said, I still struggle with Social Media.

There are the usual things that I’ve heard many folks complain about. Petty complaints, self congratulation…the overall fakeness of people trying to put only their best face on for the world to see so that their lives seem so perfect…and yes, I know I have been, and probably will be guilty of this myself.

This of course isn’t just true of social media, it is true of life in general.

All of these things though, I don’t think are my biggest struggle.

My biggest struggle as I scroll through my stream on a daily basis is that there just seems to no longer be a sense of sacredness. Everything in our lives is up for public consumption. Certain situations and life experiences used to be ‘just for us’…Whether it be an intimate conversation/coffee with a friend…the baptism of our kids…a sound bite from a sermon that we feel we have to share right then…

What happened to just living in the moment…enjoying the moment…just for what it is? God’s grace shown to us…poured out on us…for us to enjoy. I suppose part of joy is wanting to share it with the world…Joy overflows…it’s supposed to. But as I view much of social media…I see no reverence for those things and those moments.

There are times in life where we are to be in awe of the Holy. There are times in life where we should be dropped to our knees and left speechless by God’s graces and mercy shown towards us in our lives. I don’t know that having the cell phone/tablet/lap top at our finger tips ready to record every instance of beauty illustrates this truth.

Beauty needs to be shared. No doubt. Part of human nature is wanting to share the beauty that we encounter. I think that is part of being created in the image of God. That is a part of us that is like God.

Sometimes though, I think beauty should knock you down and simply cause you to stare. Sometimes something is so beautiful that we aren’t able to find the words for it. Too often though, what I see, and what I do…is miss the beauty because I’m too busy trying to describe it. I lose part of the joy because I’m too busy trying to show others what I’m seeing…And the kicker is…often, the beauty get’s lost in translation.

Or maybe even worse, we grow numb…we place all things on the same level…there is no more sacred/non-sacred…there is no more extraordinary/ordinary. We lose our since of awe…our since of the holy.

Losing our awe of the holy is a dangerous thing…

Then again…maybe I’m wrong about all of this…

Maybe there is a sense/glimpse of the sacred and holy in all things. Maybe that is one of the benefits of social media…being able to show that…to point people to the beauty we are experiencing. To help people find that glimpse of beauty that they otherwise may not find…

Maybe there is a balance there that we have to find.

That is my battle…

What say you?

Interesting observations on Adams skills as a father…

I had some interesting thoughts during our church service this past week, thought I would share them with you. Sorry Pastor Will, they don’t have a whole lot to do with the message, but I was paying attention.
If you know much about the book of Genesis, you know that there were two lines of descendants that came from Adam. You had the line of Cain, which as time passed, became progressively more evil. In the fifth generation from Cain you see a guy who is a murderer and corrupts God’s plan for marriage by taking two wives. Then you had the Godly line of Seth, which we are told when his son is born, people are calling on the name of the Lord, and in the fifth generation from Seth you see a man so righteous that he is walking and talking with God, and is then taken straight up to heaven. He was so righteous God didn’t want him to die. Eventually from the line of Seth you also have Noah, whom the Bible tells us was a righteous man, who was blameless, and that he “walked with God”.
So the question came to my mind as I was sitting in church, “Why was the line of Seth Godly, yet the line of Cain was so evil?” Obviously we know the story of Cain, and we know he was a pretty bad dude. Surely this had an impact on his children and grandchildren…but did Adam’s parenting have anything to do with it? Also, did Adam’s parenting have any impact on Seth, and his children and grandchildren?
I made one interesting observation that I think can shed some light on the situation, and hopefully it will make us think. This is just my opinion, from my reading of Scripture, but look at what it says in Genesis 4 verse 1, when Cain was conceived. “Now Adam knew Eve his wife, and she conceived and bore Cain…” Pretty straight forward, it doesn’t tell us much about Adam or his involvement with either Cain, or his brother Abel for that matter. But now flip over to Genesis 5 verse 3, when describing the conception and I believe rearing or Seth. “When Adam had lived 130 years, he fathered a son in his own likeness, after his image, and named him Seth.”
Perhaps I’m reading something into the text that isn’t there, but I find it interesting that it talks about Seth, being in the image and likeness of Adam his father, who by the way was created in the likeness and image of God. Yet with Cain, we have no such language. Is it possible that this is why we see such a difference in the two family lines? Is it possible that for whatever reason Adam was more of a “father” to Seth, and took a more active role in molding him as a man? Is it possible that those traits were passed down and learned by the proceeding generations? Is it possible that we also see Adams’s failures as a father, and as a man reflected in the life of Cain, and his subsequent generations? This is all conjecture, but perhaps at some point, perhaps after Adam’s youngest son Abel was murdered by his older brother, and then his son Cain was sent away from the presence of the Lord, he realized he was doing something wrong. Perhaps he blamed himself. What father who has had a son go the wrong way in life hasn’t wondered if he could have done something different? What father hasn’t blamed himself, at least partially for their son’s failings? Perhaps these things were going through Adam’s mind as well, and when his next son, Seth, was born he made an active decision to do things differently.
Like I say, perhaps I am reading something into the text that isn’t there, but it does make you think doesn’t it? If nothing else, hopefully this post will make the guys out there realize what an awesome responsibility it is to be a father. How important it is for us to reflect the image and likeness of God, so that our sons and daughters can do the same. I believe Adam finally came to this realization. As history tells us, Adam very rarely did things right the first time around. I think many of us are in the same shoes. But I think God redeemed Adam, both personally and through his children. Luckily God can do the same for us.