Let's Stop Talking About Ourselves
2014-12-06
The longer I have been on social networks the harder it is for me to post something to my own wall.  Why?  Because I have come to realize how incredibly difficult it is to post something without revealing my own self-worship or self-righteousness.  I think that social networking can be used for something entirely more transcendent than sharing with everyone how great the best 15 minutes of my life had become for the day.  I think it can be more than pictures of perfectly cooked meals and a good glass of wine.  I think it can be more than a self-portrait of a hurricane wave I caught for the day.  I can think it can be more than the beautifully lit Christmas Tree in my foyer.  It can even be more than pictures of my kids on Christmas morning.  

Please don't get me wrong - I'm pretty sure we will continue to see each other's daily celebrations of life - and I think that's pretty great.  But I am wondering if you might consider taking part in a secret experiment with me.  You see, it has to remain secret, you can't let anyone know why you are doing what you are doing, because otherwise this whole experiment fails.  

What if you and I both took the next 10 days of social networking, whether it be Twitter, Facebook, Instagram or whatever the young twerps have secretly jumped to these days, and we used this technology only to make someone else's life better?  What if we checked our motives on every post and intentionally did not post anything that glorified us but rather had to glorify someone else?  What if we posted pictures of our neighbor's accomplishments rather than our own?  Wouldn't that be awesome?  

What are some ways we could this?  

Send private messages to your friends and encourage them.  Don't post it on their wall if there is any hint of self-aggrandizement in your motive.  Don't post because you want people to see who you know and how good of a friend you are.  If you think your public encouragement will encourage your friend even more - than do it!  

Post pictures of something someone else did.  Maybe it's a great Christmas light set up that your neighbor put up.  Maybe it's a picture of a great window display at the mall.  Maybe it's an incredible piece of artwork God has given us in a sunrise - just leave your feet and face out of it.  We know you're there because YOU took the picture.  Besides, as beautiful as your face is, your blocking the view of that giant ball of fire God has suspended in space.  Stay small and let God be big.  

Thank someone for a great quote they posted that helped you that day.  Tell them why it helped you.  

Here's a big one - offer yourself!  That's right.  You heard it right.  Young people, call someone up or post on a social network that you are willing to babysit someone's kids for free.  Parents are looking for ways to spend time with each other and to go Christmas shopping for their kids.  Give some young parents the night off.  Or maybe some of us could offer to help decorate someone's house for Christmas - with the promise of helping them take all that stuff down when it is depressingly up on New Year's Day.  

All of you kids getting ready for the big dance, the big formal, or an awesome New Year's Party, instead of giving us the same beautiful picture of you and your friends with your hand on your hip, post pictures of your friends - without you in it.  Let someone else encourage you by posting your picture.  

Invite your family and friends to whatever church you go to - and don't tell everyone that your church is the greatest - because it's not.  Your pastor isn't the greatest.  Your music isn't the greatest.  Your style isn't the greatest.  For every supposed great thing your church is doing, there are 100 more doing it better.  Settle down on the partisan tribalism and just invite people who don't already go (that's the key Christian) to another church to your church this Christmas.  You'll be doing something cool for your pastor, your church family, and for the Kingdom of God.  

My point is this - experiment with me.  Take the next 10 days and use your social network for completely selfless reasons.  Don't judge another's motives if they post something that doesn't seem completely selfless to you - let it be between you and Jesus.  Be intentional about it.  

Challenge accepted?  I guess we'll never know - except by our love alone.  
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