Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Weekend in Review and Some Ramblings about Social Media...

It was a great weekend!  Awaken services were packed, especially second service where there was little room for movement(not much of an exaggeration at all....need more space).  We continued our "Girls and Boys" series by talking about who a guy is.  I think there were some eyes opened and some teens realized that they thought they knew a lot more about the opposite sex than they actually did. 

Then Sunday night we rocked a Super Bowl party.  The turnout for this event doesn't quite reach the normal Life Group attendance numbers, but we had a blast!  I spent a good portion of the evening making 25 lbs. of wings(a ridiculous portion of which were actually eaten during the game).  I love our Awaken Services and I love life groups, but sometimes it's nice to just chill and watch a football game together!

Now for some deep ramblings about social media.  Social media has become a huge tool for teen ministry.  I can tweet or facebook post activities, events, and reminders.  I can repost or direct teens to videos we've used for different services or events.  I can directly contact a teen in a way that might actually be faster and/or more effective than calling or even texting.  It's an effective tool when used the right way.

But here's the problem:  Once a student(or anyone for that matter) identifies themself with Jesus Christ and makes any public(social media or not) statement that they are a Christian, every bit of their social media existence becomes 100% subject to evaluation against that Christian backdrop.  And some might say this is not fair, but I say it's part of being a Christian.  Part of being a Christian is holding yourself to a higher standard and knowing that others will too, not to mention the even higher standard that God holds us to.  When we take the name "Christian" we represent not only ourselves, but Jesus Christ in everything we do and say.  This very much includes social media.  Back-to-back tweets that reference partying in one and church in the other reflect poorly on the Christian and on Christ.  Tweeting(or Re-tweeting for that matter) a questionable quote for the sake of  laughter reflects poorly on the Christian and on Christ.  Condemning others for their actions through social media shows others that Christians(and in turn, Christ) are judgmental, not loving. 

This makes it necessary to ask this question:  Is this the picture of Christianity and the picture of Jesus Christ we want the world to see?  Absolutely not.  And honestly, it comes down to something very simple:  Take the extra 15 seconds to reread what you're tweeting or posting on facebook.  I promise that every once in awhile you'll find yourself rewording or removing a lot of what you were about to post.
Remember who you are and remember who's you are.  Remember who you represent.  Remember we may only get one chance to show someone Jesus Christ.  And remember that one wrong tweet really can mess that up.  And most of all, remember, God works through us not because we are perfect, but in spite of our weakness.   

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