Finding Rest in a Social Media World

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The following is an excerpt from a Youth Specialties article entitled "The App Addicted Teen": 

A student a few months ago attended an event I was running. He lost his phone and swore that someone stole it. He was insistent that the phone was stolen. So we pulled all the bags off the bus and searched each one. We never found the phone in the bags or on any student.

On the bus ride home, he kept yelling out things like, “I will kill the person who has my phone”, or “if anyone returns my phone I will give them $150.” He later found his phone in the exact place where he left it.

TIM KELLER tweeted: “The most painful times in our lives are times in which our idols are being threatened or removed.”

This statement is true for students who live in a digital world. If their idols are being threatened or removed, they will freak out.

With that said, 90% of students are on social networks. 78% have a smart phone. How are we going to help students disconnect? We will have to find a way.

Check out the entire article at this link

We seem to live in a Social Media addicted world.

All month long we have been looking at social media and the impact it has on our lives. Youth ministry leaders, parents, and pastors might read the above statements and agree, "Yup, been there." That moment when our connection to the world has been taken from us and in a brief moment of panic, we spit venom.

As I read though the entries this month, the various stories of the writers made me think about the chaotic social media world we live in.

We are never disconnected. Always on.

Very tired.

I have been challenged in my own life to find ways for Sabbath rest. The reason for this is that in ministry we tend to be never really disconnected. Always on. Very tired. 

A book I recently read, called “Soul Keeping”, has helped me navigate this hurried world we live in. The statement that spoke to me deeply comes from Dallas Willard, who shares with John Ortburg (when John was going through his own wildly chaotic life and was looking for advice about being Spiritually healthy in a chaotic world) these words:

“You must RUTHLESSLY eliminate hurry from your life…Hurry is the great enemy of spiritual life in our day. You must ruthlessly eliminate hurry from your life.”

When our time is constantly being taken up with our idols, whether in social media or other places, and we are trying to fit “life“ in, how can we be spiritually healthy?

I think that finding rest and ruthlessly eliminating hurry from our life requires us to be disconnected regularly. It requires us to find Sabbath moments of rest when the world tells us not to.

But to do that, it has to be a discipline practiced in our routines. Things we can do might include some of the following ideas:

  • Set it in your calendars.
  • Let your people know that your “disconnected day” is…
  • Turn off your device.
  • Find that something that refills you spiritual “cup” (a novel, sailing, mountain biking or climbing, take a drive, go for coffee with that special someone in your life etc…)...(your method of disconnection)

For me, even though my world is very connected, I long to find and live in true Sabbath rest, that I might be disconnected from the world for a time.

What about you? Do you find the need to be social media disconnected OR do you find social media helpful for your Spiritual health?

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The answer to the question at the end is both; "and" not "or". However, that doesn't take away the need for Sabbath rest and ruthlessly keeping time to be disconnected. It's so very important! Those who follow the Lord need to allow for time to hear his still small voice in the midst of the noise we live in.

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yeah i think its just a matter of structure and direction. everything used in the right capacity for the right reasons is good. social media was never meant to sustain friendships and never meant to maintain value. when used as a temple to yourself yeah its bad, of course. i made a short youtube video on this. is ok for me to share that here?