Author: Saleama A. Ruvalcaba, MATS
You’re reading this because you know you need to – but won’t.
We all have social media accounts and on the surface social media seems harmless.
There’s nothing wrong with posting a picture here or sharing a funny post there.
Or what’s the harm in “liking” something special from a “friend”; she was just married – or just had a baby – what’s the harm in that?
There probably isn’t anything wrong, per se, with social media but most of us are not on social media for a short time just to share and catch up. We spend the majority of our time on social media without realizing the damage we are doing in our lives.
Seriously – why such a strong word?
Because it’s true!
We blindly sit on social media without any concept of the impact it has on us. The average person spends about two hours a day on social media. That might not seem like a lot – but think about how much information or better yet – the type of information you are allowing into your soul – for TWO HOURS every day. And two hours is nice. I am pretty sure some people spend way more than two hours on social media.
As a Christian or Christian woman, should you even be on social media?
I’m not going to say you should or should not be on social media. You might actually need a social media account in today’s word. I’m a Media Project Manager at the church I work for, Bellevue Baptist Church, in Memphis, TN.
Obviously if you have “Media” in your job title, you might actually need a social media account. But it doesn’t mean you have to be a slave to social media and live an unproductive life. You can learn to develop positive boundaries and discipline by limiting your use of social media.
Get to the Botton of Your “Likes”
One of the reasons we are obsessed with social media is because we are not in tune to the real reason we are on it. Social media gives us a sense of purpose. The more interaction our posts get the better we feel about ourselves, yet we don’t understand that’s really a superficial feeling.
Think about it for a moment; how much better is your life because someone liked your post? What progress have you made today as a woman of God because someone liked your post? Are you a better wife and mother because something liked your post? If you’re single; did you hear God share His plan for your future because someone liked your post? Has your prayer life strengthened because someone liked your post? How closer are you to God because someone liked your post?
Our purpose in life is not on social media.
4 Reasons You Should Limit Social Media:
- First, social media is a waste of time – to put it bluntly!
As I mentioned, if it’s for work purposes it can highly beneficial, but to simply have a social media account with no direct purpose – it’s a waste of time! When we are spending more time on social media we are spending less time with God.
When you wake up each day, do you spend quality time with God in prayer and reading His Word? Or do you spend more time looking at social media?
In Malachi 1:7-8, God is angry with the priests who were giving God their leftovers. God required perfect sacrifices from the priests, however, they became complacent with God and gave him defective sacrifices. God asked them; would you give your governor your best or leftovers?
Now I’ll ask you; if a celebrity or a person you truly admire visited you, would you be checking social media while they’re talking or would they have your undivided attention?
We foolishly think God is okay with us wasting our time on social media because of His love and patience – but He is not okay with it. He wants to spend time with you. He wants you to be a godly woman for His Kingdom. You cannot become a godly woman when social media is your god – and not the God of this universe!
- Second, consider the amount of garbage we are filtering into our souls.
Another issue with social media is, we aren’t really interacting with “real” friends and we all know this. You might have high values and morals and prefer to look at positive impacting posts, but sorry – a lot of people will post or share almost anything simply because they have the “audience” to do it.
Research is shown that negative information is retained better than positive information, thus, the majority of what people share on social media is repetitive negative information. And the sad part is, the information doesn’t even have to be true. Most people won’t even take the time to research the validity of information before sharing it.
Lady, you are being bombarded with negative information all day long. Or maybe you’re one of those who engages in the sharing of negative information.
How do you feel looking at negative information all day? Can you honestly say it makes you happy?
Does it feel good to know you share information all day which might make other people feel bad?
Paul says in Romans 12:2 not to conform to the patterns of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.
You are conforming to this world by consistently looking at and or sharing negative information. Negative information is a profitable business – at your expense.
- Third, social media takes away from productive time.
When we are spending a lot of time on social media, we spend less time being productive citizens.
Paul says in Ephesians 5: 15-20 to be wise and productive as the days are evil.
Think about it lady, do you really think God wants you to waste your days on social media when He has a direct plan He is waiting for you to start?
He has plans for your life and He expects you to fulfill those plans. You are called to equip others and expand God’s Kingdom. He has the plan ready and waiting for you. Mine for example, is through writing. Your plan might be through teaching, speaking, or as a culinary chef, or dancer, or inventor, or community leader, or government leader. The list goes on.
The point is; deep within your heart and soul God has given you a desire, and through that desire He will equip you to help others for His Kingdom.
But – that cannot be done with you on social media all day not being productive- and not drawing near to Him so He can reveal His plan through prayer and wisdom.
- Fourth, your life is a social media reality show and you’re not getting paid for it!
I would actually draft our entire family life around social media. I’d already have a story to share a week ahead of time based on what I knew our family would be doing. And… I would carefully craft the wording to make a post even more interesting. In addition, while on a date night with my husband, I could not wait to take a picture of us and post it. Then I’d spend the rest of our “date night” wondering if anyone “liked” the picture and checked my phone for assurance.
Um…that’s completely crazy – yet we all do it!
Social media giants are absolute billionaires at our expense.
I’m not preaching here – I am a work in progress. We foolishly get sucked into the trap of social media and we miss out on truly living, enjoying life – God’s world – because we are so concerned with the silliness of social media. We are missing out on life – real life – every day and we have no idea.
Not only that, when our life is a social media reality show, we start to compare ourselves to others and it makes us post similar experiences. This is not okay.
Paul reminds us in Galatians 6:4 to test our actions and not compare ourselves to others.
Ask yourself why you posted that picture today? Was it really to share something nice – or to make others envious of you? If it were the latter reason that’s sin.
God knows your heart.
Take Action Lady
You are not a slave to your phone or social media.
You can limit social media today and become a productive woman of God.
As I type this post, I’m obviously on a computer and my phone is sitting directly in front of me, however, I have not checked my social media accounts in a while – at all. I’ve been on social media for work. The last time I was on there I had several notifications – which I did not check. I love the freedom of not feeling like a slave to social media!
I have a purpose to write and equip women therefore, I don’t have time to waste on social media. I have a purpose to be a godly wife, and mother, and stellar Media Project Manager at work. I don’t have time to waste on social media.
Now let me warn you, though.
It won’t be easy to simply give up social media. You might be inspired but it won’t be easy. It will be easier if you fill your day with productivity.
First thing you might want to do is delete your social media apps. It’s much easier to not check social media if you don’t have easy access to them.
If you still find it difficult; maybe ask someone close to you to change the passwords for you. Pick a day you will go on social media, maybe on the weekends only and ask for your passwords on the weekends – but of course – change them again at the beginning of the week.
Next, get a planner and start to plan your day. It is proven that when people write out their daily schedule they have a better chance of keeping their schedule rather than relying on motivation alone. Write a daily schedule which will include prayer and time with God studying His Word, family, and productive time for yourself.
Trust me, you will slowly begin to realize how much less you feel the need to be on social media.
It can be done!
Lady, I want to see you flourish! You can! God wants to bring out the best in you. You cannot do this without His help. Pray daily for His guidance and strength. Satan will lie to you. Believe God’s truth that you are a strong woman of God and He will see you through!
~Saleama A. Ruvalcaba, MATS
Resource: Think Outside the Building page 37 (negative information research)