What's That On My Computer?
Today's topic: Social Media. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram.....they're all forms of it but so are things like this blog and website. As a media guy, it makes me cringe everytime I hear someone say, "Social media is just awful. It's the worst epidemic of this age", or something along those lines. To be honest, there is a lot of social media that is abused and misused which creates a bad vibe for the rest of the world.
While the Bible doesn't specifically say anything that even relates to social media, we do read in several passages where prophets and scribes write to people. If used properly, social media could be (and is in some cases) a powerful tool to help share the gospel! Mass communication is both a blessing and a thorn at times. While impersonal, it also has the power to touch someone's heart or offer an encouraging word.
I remember sitting in my college dorm room in 2003 when I got a call on my Nokia prepaid cellphone from a high school buddy of mine telling me about this new website where you could go sign up if you had a college email address and be able to talk to your friends. I thought, "what in the world is he talking about". So I decided to give it a try. Back in the early days of Facebook, you actually could only register for an account if you had an active college email address ending in .EDU; no 8 year olds showing off their latest accomplishment, no moms posting about their dietary choices and no grandparents posting endless pictures of the grandkids that just came to visit. As college kids we thought, "Cool! Now we can keep up with what our high school friends are doing that went to other places." Before too long, however, it blew up in to a popularity contest. And just like any group, you started having a few bad apples that were ruining it for everyone else.
Fast forward to today and that taste still lingers. You will get the young millenials who constantly feel the need to tell the world about all their problems, free speech explodes in to foul language and verbal battles, completely disregarding common decency. The words "if you don't like it, you can just unfriend me" come across more often than not.
So what would happen if all of the nagging, hate speech, bashing and rude behavior of those hiding behind a keyboard turned in to words of encouragement or just a simple "Hey, I was thinking about you today"? The bigger question is...what do you get on social media for? Is it to keep up with the latest happenings at your church or book club, or is it to hear the latest gossip on the street (or computer screen).
For now, lets leave it at being the cleanest, friendliest place where you can connect with old childhood friends, share memories of days gone by and uplight each other for a better tomorrow.
Until next time, I wish you all the best and will see you at The First.
*"The First" is a reference to First Baptist Church of Zachary. For more information about the church, please visit our website at www.fbcz.org or call 225.654.2755. First Baptist also keeps several social media accounts. You can find us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/firstbaptistzachary or on Twitter at @fbczachary.