My most twitter-savvy friend @timmybrister just posted on his blog a helpful reminder about the dangers of Twitter entitled Twitter Is Not Real. His post reminded me: don’t judge a twit by his twitter. King David might have been the least likely candidate to be retweeted. Reading Tim’s helpful post reminded me, however, of comments I’ve heard over the past year prompting me to write.
As Tim warned, and we should be reminded, Twitter is not real. Yet, there are some who occasionally send “Facebook and Twitter are the Devil” messages (well sort of–at least they come across anti social-networking) suggesting these sites cause many in the church to be fake. Facebook and Twitter are fluttered with self-promotion, this is undeniable. But the problem is not with Facebook and Twitter.
For what its worth, Status Updates were not invented by Facebook. People have always and will continue to publicly post very selective status updates about their lives every week, even in churches–updates that do not tell a person’s whole story. When is the last time you approached someone in the halls of your church, and when you asked “How’s it going?,” they proceeded to lament to you their struggles much like David does in the Psalms?
Certainly it happens. But the chances are, if you’re not intentional about having authentic relationships, especially in your family and in your church through community and/or accountability groups, you’re probably broadcasting selective status updates every Sunday when you meet with your church for worship.
Yes, Twitter and Facebook are new temptations for us to go on being inauthentic, in the same way going to church on Sundays can provide ample opportunities to post “its all good,” while leaving out all our life’s baggage. I am not suggesting church and Twitter are equal. They’re NOT! But both provide for relationships that can promote the gospel. And both are susceptible to people promoting themselves artificially.
The problem ultimately is not online, or the devil, but in your heart…and mine. Thankfully, the gospel is the proven solution for our hearts and frees us so that we do not have to live this way. But, just because you are not tweeting and facebooking, does not mean you’re not posting status updates each day. You can be fake without Facebook….or Twitter. #thinkaboutit