Fasting…Kind of

I am fasting…

…from social media…

…kind of.

I’m going on 24 hours now but let me assure you that I am still staying inline with Matthew 6:17 as my head is anointed and my face is washed. I’m not whining about it or walking around like I’m suffering from withdrawal. I do feel, though, like I am cheating a little since this is being automatically posted to Facebook and Twitter, but I am justifying it by not actually opening the apps or logging in online.

But pastor, WordPress is a social media platform, isn’t it?

Well, yes, but…it’s not Facebook or Twitter and I’m not checking WordPress and perusing it from time to time. That’s why I said “kind of“.

So, if you are “staying inline” with Matthew 6:17, why then are you writing about it?

You’re asking a lot of questions (or I’m talking to myself too much), either way, here’s why I am posting this:

My life seems quieter now.

I read a devotion recently that talked about listening to the voice of God. The author said that many people have inside voices and outside voices. He then went on to say that God doesn’t speak to us with those voices but rather with a still, small, quiet whisper. Why would God do that if He wants to talk to us so we will listen. Well, when someone whispers to you what do you naturally do?

Exactly!

You draw closer to them so you can hear. See my point?

Facebook, Twitter and platforms like those are loud; all using their “outside voices” to get your attention. So excuse me, I’m going to go and listen.

The Pastor -|—

Facebook and Twitter Hiatus

It seems more appropriate to write about my Facebook and Twitter hiatus here rather than on Facebook, since it is Facebook and Twitter that I am stepping away from for the time being. Oddly enough, though, some of you are reading this via Facebook or Twitter since these posts get posted to those social media outlets.

O.K., enough typing “Facebook” or “Twitter”. On to my point.

Since the election last week, I have been keeping a close eye on social media to monitor the reaction of people. I was surprised by the outcome of the election but even more surprised by the reaction of this nation’s citizens. It has saddened me to read stories of people feeling empowered to lash out against people of color and immigrants (legal or otherwise) and others who have been marginalized. I have also been saddened to read about people lashing out at the millions of people who voted for Donald Trump; and basically that is what people are doing by protesting the election. This has nothing to do with the man who was legally elected to the office of president but rather everything to do with the nation who elected him. We have our issues but I don’t see how taking to the streets shouting “Not my president” is going to solve them. We need to pray and work together to make this a better nation.

And so, as I perused the likes of Facebook and Twitter, I have read angry and sometimes hate-filled words. I have seen “news” articles that I wonder if they are even true. There are petitions to rescind a legal election. So much negativity. So much hate. So much division. As I have been reading these things I have been finding myself getting drawn into the fray. I have been tempted to lash out and mix it up with people, but that would accomplish nothing. So therefore I am taking a break from the aforementioned social media outlets (Did you see what I did there? I didn’t mentioned that “F” or “T” word). I am going to take a break to care for my soul. It almost feels like Satan has been prodding me; drawing me in. I need a break and maybe even rethink my social media habits. I am not going to let Satan distract me from living faithfully in the Kingdom of God. And so, the only things that people will see from me on “F” or “T” will be faith related posts coming through third party apps (like my blog or my Bible app, for example). I am not going to sign in and check who has responded to what I’ve posted or respond to any comments. The only social media I will be doing is writing here on my blog, and therefore the only comments I will be responding to are ones posted here. What I am doing is simply taking a break from “F” and “T”. I am not sure how long the break will last but if you want to keep up with my ramblings then you will have to find them here.

Don’t get me wrong, I am not trying to set myself up as some morally superior, super Christian by doing what I am doing. I have my issues as well. My hope is that people will consider following my example. As a people we need to watch what we post. Does it glorify God? Does it honor one another? It is truthful? As a nation, we need to bring GOD back into the fray. We need to keep our eyes fixed on Jesus. Our only hope is to turn to the Creator as this world is in His hands. Let’s not let Satan tear apart this nation. We have our issues but together, and with God, we can combat that which Satan is trying to do and in the end, praise God for the victory already won through Jesus Christ.

So there you have it. My hiatus from “F” and “T” is underway. May God be praised and glorified.

The Pastor -|—

Don’t be a Jerk

I saw a Facebook post recently that said:

“Sometimes the best evangelism is simply telling people you’re a Christian and then not being a complete jerk.”

There is some truth to that but it definitely does not go far enough in today’s world. There are way too many people who claim to be a Christian but do not follow Jesus (which doesn’t make sense to me). For some, “Christian” is just a title to be used when it suits them but when opposition comes the title is abandoned. Then there are people who claim the title “Christian” but under a new and “relevant” definition. It’s like a Twitter post I saw recently,

“Saying you’re a new kind of Christian with a new kind of Christianity is basically saying you’re an old kind of heretic.” [Burk Parsons]

To “simply” say you’re a Christian doesn’t tell me much now days, which is kind of sad. “Christian” used to mean something but now it is just a watered down title. So now what? Well, you can’t simply tell people you are a Christian and then not be a complete jerk. In today’s world, Jesus-following Christians need to confess with their mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in their heart that God raised him from the dead. That is salvation and that is the message that needs to be proclaimed.
Jesus is Lord.
Jesus is the Son of God.
Jesus died for you.
Jesus was raised for you.
Through faith, when you confess your sins, you are forgiven.

So don’t “simply” stop at Christian, but confess with your mouth what you believe in your heart…and THEN don’t be a complete jerk.

The Pastor -|—