SOCIAL MEDIA: POISON OR PLATFORM? PART 2

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“And thus I make it my ambition to preach the gospel, not where Christ has already been named, lest I build on someone else’s foundation.” Romans 15:20

A few weeks ago I wrote a blog challenging us to rethink and evaluate the purpose of our social media! After much time reflecting on my personal use of social media I came to the conclusion that it has become somewhat of an addiction, distraction, and idol for me. I was spending about 1 hour per day on social media, which for me personally is way more time than I want to spend on it. In order to refocus my priorities and break the addictive habit I have decided to take a 1 month break from all social media. The purpose of this break is to think through how I can regain control of my social media rather than letting it control me. I am by no means against social media, but I think it should serve a greater purpose than ourselves.

FALSE PRECEPTION

As I stated a few weeks ago, one of the greatest problems with social media is that it is a very self centered and often portrays an unrealistic view of who we really are. We frequently choose to display the most exciting, creative, attractive, and original parts of our lives. The reason we do this is because deep down in our subconscious (although most would never admit it) we’re looking for affirmation and acceptance from people. The truth is everyone wants to be someone more than they truly are. This desire is a part of our sin nature that was passed down from our first parents who fell into the first sin when Satan tempted them saying, “You will be like God” (Genesis 3:5).

Social media can easily be used to tempt our generation to think more highly of themselves than they ought. It can also become an idol or a place people look to find their identity. These are of course only a few dangers of many, however, I want to spend the rest of our time thinking about how we can redeem this huge cultural platform.

THE SELF GOSPEL

Social media is indeed the greatest platform of the 21st century and the gospel that is most commonly preached through it is the “self” gospel. If there’s one place today where Christ has not been named its through our social media platforms. Paul wrote saying that he was ambitions to preach the gospel where Christ was not yet named, and if he lived in the digital age that we’re in today I can’t help but believe that he would use social media to exalt the name of Christ. So what does this look like? How can we rebuild the foundation of our social media so that it is Christocentric?

FINDING IDENTITY IN CHRIST

I want to answer this question by first saying that although we are all created in the image of God, we are all made unique as individuals. This means how we display and magnify the image of Christ to the world (even in our social media) will differ from person to person. There is no cookie cutter one size fits all formula for bringing Christ glory. I think it first starts by understanding who God made you to be individually. You cannot accurately display who He is through your life until you have discovered who you are in Him! Therefore, discovering your identity in Christ is the first huge step in having a Christocentric social media platform!

Once you know who you are in Him, it takes away all the pressure to feel like you need to impress other people on social media (which is what most people are trying to do). You will be freed up to use the unique gifts and talents He gave you to show how great He is.

STOP TRYING SO HARD

Secondly I want to say that having a Christocentric social media platform doesn’t mean every Instagram post needs to be a cliché Christian picture you stole off of Google images with a bible verse quoted in your caption. It doesn’t mean that every one of your snapchats needs to be of you singing worship songs in your car, dropping your 20 bucks in the give can, or talking about how you’re really looking forward to your community group next week. It doesn’t mean every one of your tweets needs to be a quote by John Calvin, John Bunyan, John Stott, John Wesley, John Owen, John Edwards, John Piper, Jon Courson, John MacArthur, John Charles Ryle, or John the Apostle.

Having a Christocentric social media platform simply means allowing Christ to be seen as the central focus of your life. We have a huge opportunity to use our social media to display the glory of God! I want to once again challenge and exhort us all to be prayerful as to how we can place Christ at the center of all we do! 

Author: Xavier Brasseur