Tuesday, 2 September 2014

If your eye would lead you to hell, would you pluck it out?

That's all well and good, but what if it were social media?

So 3.30am found me going to bed after surfing into the wee hours. I wasn't surfing anywhere really bad, but it also wasn't good, not going to build a man up to walk well before God either. I have a love-hate with the internet very often, and know that it actively tries - sometimes succeeding - to take over my life.

It's all too useful. Keeps me in touch with distant friends, and that's pretty much the SOLE reason I have a facebook account, for the few people who are important but would never contact direct. And the forums are fantastic sources of information, learning, even relationship & support sometimes. Sometimes.

So it's a little bit like that question.

I know 'plucking it out' will be inconvenient, possibly a bit painful in some ways (though a lot less than losing an eye!) and it will definitely narrow my field of view. So I don't do it, and the things remains, a little snare hidden in full view. And if facebook and the few forums I still use go, what will I replace them with? A sudden new-found desire for prayer & solitude? A re-kindled desire to blog more likely (:p) . Another hobby/centre of fascination/topic of interest?

I need to change.

There's not an enormous amount of faith that might happen right now. Things have genuinely been different since our holiday, partly because decisions have been taken and choices made, and God's been around and brought some hope & renewal. But. But. (By the way, I DON'T like big butts - yeah, the sense of humour is unredeemed still too) so much of the life and hope and expectation of the goodness of God seems to have been sucked out in 2014. I KNOW God is good, and righteous and loving and cares for me. No doubt. But.

There's a hymn that I may have blogged about before, that contains a line that talks about no longer dreading the fires of unexpected sorrow, yet my experience is that being a Christian does not prevent one from experiencing that fire. And I don't seem to be walking in a faith that would cope well with that scenario right now, having been dangled over that particular precipice in the last couple of days.

So there is hope and a future in progress, despite my miserable ramblings here, but it's a future hope, rather than a here-and-now hope, and I'm hanging on until it becomes a bit more here and now.

So the question is, can social media be allowed to continue to have a place in my life? The easy answer, in some ways, is to make the same choice I did over TV and simply say a firm NO: a choice I never regretted. The only thing really making me hold on is that this would mean detaching from so many people, but is that connection more important than living well, since I don't seem able to exercise sufficient self control? I don't yet know.


  1. I feel your questions. I'm spending less & less time on Social Media in the past year or so. I have an account on G+ but I'm seldom there, it's just tied to my blog. I am on Twitter, but I deleted all my lists a while back, so what I see when I log in is quite limited. Many days there is little to react to. And, as you know, I stopped doing forums years ago.

    The way I see this is like what I did with TV. I never actually got rid of my TV - I just cut the cable. So, there' s nothing to watch unless I put in a DVD or buy a movie or TV show. Just getting rid of the channel surfing, the "just seeing what's on" redeemed a huge amount of time for me.

    For me, what really matters is being intentional about relationships. Social Media can be a huge temptation to waste time and it can be a spectacular way to build meaningful connections with people. I just try to make sure I have more of the latter.

  2. Fern - I'm the other way, and if I allowed it, I could spend all day, every day uselessly on t'internet. Well, to moderate that, it would also be about building relationships with people, which would be genuinely good, but the wheat to chaff ratio is too high to really make it viable. It may become necessary to ditch the computer and reclaim my life at some stage soon.


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