What happens on Facebook stays on Facebook. Right? Or Instagram, or Twitter, or Snapchat, or TikTok, or – you get the idea. Whatever we do and say on social media stays there, right?
Hopefully, the very thought of that being true made you spit out your coffee and yell “NO!” Sometimes we are shocked by what we see from someone we know online, because it seems so different from our in-person interactions with them. Those things we read on social media can drastically change the way we interact with a person the next time we see them, possibly even to the point that we pull away from the relationship entirely.
It’s easy to get on a spiritual high-horse and look down our noses at the way other people are hypocritical or two-faced with the way they use their social media accounts. But how often do we take a step back and evaluate what we are posting? It is frightening how easy it is to hide behind a screen – to use that social media account as a way to say what we really want to say, regardless of how it will come across, who it might hurt, or how it might damage our relationships, whether we are posting something ourselves or jumping into a “discussion” on someone else’s account.
Proverbs 18:21 says, “Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruits.” The words we type online aren’t exempt from this statement simply because our tongue doesn’t actually form them. What kind of words are we using on social media – life or death words?
This proverb also addresses our love for talking. “Those who love it” refers to those who love to use their tongue, or talk. It says they will “eat its fruits,” meaning they will eat the fruit of loving to talk. This makes me pause and think because I really love talking with people. Sometimes I talk too much and regret it later. I have to eat the fruit of having said too much, or the wrong thing. Not all fruit is sweet.
When we enter into discussions on social media, what are we bringing to the table? Social media has taught us to respond quickly, often, and without careful thinking. It has taught us the art of impatient communication, whose fruit is often pain and broken relationships.
As believers, we have a responsibility to think carefully about what our social media tongues are saying. We need to be patient in our communication with others, not letting ourselves be drawn into ranting or reckless posting. As pastors’ wives, that responsibility is even heavier. People are even more likely to notice when we are impatient, unkind, or stirring up trouble on our social media accounts and that can be a barrier between them and spiritual growth.
Sisters, what fruit is coming from our social media tongues today? Let’s seek to use our social media tongues to spread life words.
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