Friday, August 20, 2010

Some Things I've Thought About While on Facebook

I have found that the urge to share random thoughts throughout the day is quite addictive when you get involved with Facebook. I enjoy the interaction with friends there. However, I got to thinking that a lot of the thoughts that I randomly post as updates on my profile can tend to the negative. I don’t know why that is, but I got to thinking this week:

I started to complain about laundry, but I stopped when I realized how thankful I am to have a working electric washer and dryer, and how much easier laundry is now than in centuries past. Then I got to thinking how thankful for I am for the people who wear the clothes I was about to complain about washing. Then I realized how grateful I am that God's plan for us involves placing the solitary in families (Psalm 68:6) and for His good and perfect plan for me and my family (Romans 8:28-30). There are people in the world who do not have what I have, and it humbles me to think how much I take it for granted.

I started to complain about the extra pounds I’d like to shed, but I stopped when I thought about how many times I’d raised a fork to my mouth to ingest an unwise food choice just that day. And I thought about how often I neglect exercise and am lazy about healthy eating and choose to eat something I know is not good for me because I’d rather indulge my flesh in the moment than do what is right for the long term. (Galatians 5:22-25) Then I thought about how much food I waste, when so many people in the world do not have the plenty we have here. And it humbles me to think how much I take it for granted. May I not be so ungrateful.

I started to tell a story about one of my children, but I stopped when I realized that it might be funny to me but probably would embarrass him. Love would not be so arrogant and puffed up and rude as to share the failings of another for a laugh. (1 Corinthians 13) Then I started to think about how hurt I would be if he were to post something embarrassing about me when he is old enough for Facebook. (Matthew 7:12) And I started to think about how thankful I am to have children and to be their mom, and it humbles me to think how much I take it for granted.

I started to complain about feeling depressed, but I stopped when I looked around at all the many people and things for which I have to be thankful. And after reading the book we’re studying with our small group, I started thinking that it is arrogant to use depressed feelings as an excuse to sin and take my eyes off of Jesus. And I thought about how I forget the command to rejoice always. (Philippians 4:4-7) And I thought about God’s grace, shown to me, a sinner who is unworthy and undeserving of such mercy. I thought about Jesus who bore the penalty for the sin debt I owe and whose blood has cleansed me and reconciled me to God. When I cry, “Lord, have mercy!” I can rest in knowing that He has shown me such mercy in granting me the faith to trust in Him and hide my life in Christ, my Savior, Lord, High Priest and never-failing Advocate. (Bask in the riches and depths of the book of Hebrews!) And it humbles me to think how much I take it for granted.

I’m not promising I’ll consistently remember these thoughts when I go to type a status update in days to come. I may slip and write status updates that are more complaining than grateful. But I want to remember.

While reading Chapter 2 in the book Crazy Love by Francis Chan for our study this week, we discussed the fact that the point of our lives is to point to God. And we discussed how many people waste their lives. I do not want to do that.

I do not want to live selfishly. But I do. I believe, Lord. Help my unbelief! Help me to realize it so deeply that You change me from within. Because it really does humble me to realize how often I forget how great You are, how often I take it all for granted and how often I find I am living selfishly rather than seeing everything as an opportunity to give You honor and glory.


SFDaddy - Bryan said...

Thank you! I have such similar reservations all the time and you've just put these thoughts of mine into words. Thank you!

Laura said...

I find it's just as easy to complain IRL in the name of small talk. Thanks for the reminder to be grateful!

Rebekah said...

My link to this post generated a little bit of conversation over on Facebook. Maybe I should clarify a little.

I wasn't trying to point fingers at anyone, just thinking out loud about my tendency to gripe and whine about little things. I wouldn't argue for a sunshine and rainbows approach to life or even Facebook conversations. Life isn't sunshine and rainbows and it's fake to try to come across in a falsely cheerful way - that probably turns people off just as much as constant whining. I think God is glorified when we're able to laugh at a funny situation or even at ourselves. I believe He is glorified when people watch us persevere through hard times in His strength- even and maybe especially things like recurring migraines. I really don't think we should never post about those kinds of things. I was more getting at how often I have to stop myself from getting on here and complaining about laundry, just normal everyday laundry, or complaining about having to mop the floor, or just whining about stuff that isn't really 'bad' but just things that need to be done. And I have to stop myself from posting about something my kids have done that puts them in a bad light when maybe it's not something I should come running on here to shout out to the world. I'll still write posts about how frustrating it is to reach for the butter and find only an empty container someone put back in the fridge, for instance. That's just funny. I guess what I was really trying to get at was balance. I have a tendency to be very self-centered, and that's what I want to learn to overcome, and that's really what I was examining in the post.

Kay said...

I so agree. I've caught myself thinking about posting something and then stop and think about what my motives are in posting and sometimes I can go ahead and post and other times I should just move on.

I bought Crazy Love today at Mardels. I'm excited to start reading it, : )

Rebekah said...

Kay - I hope you find the book encouraging. I am finding it to be so far - we just got home from our small group discussion of chapter 2.

Lisa writes... said...

Well said. And ouch. :)

I've read "Crazy Love" but your quotes make me want to read it again.