Do you have a life outside of social media and digital technology? Or have they become your life? Hopefully, your answer to the first question is yes and no is your answer to the second. For many, I fear that a serious blurring of the line exists between their preoccupation with social media and real life. Let me begin with a couple of my personal observations:
One, for a growing number of teens and young adults, the main means of phone communication is texting, as opposed to talking on the phone. Do I think this is bad? No, I think it’s terrible. You don’t learn how to properly interact with others through texting. This trend is not an asset but a serious liability to developing effective communication skills. And get this: some people even try to drive on crowded highways while texting. How crazy is that?
Two, some people seem to virtually live on Facebook. They post so much throughout the day that I don’t know how they get much of anything else done. And I am not talking about children and retirees. I am assuming these people have jobs and that they are paid to do something other than inundate social media. And then I keep getting these Facebook requests to play games. Games I have not the slightest interest in playing. I can think of many more productive ways to spend my time than to play fruitless games.
Please understand that nothing I say in this post applies to those who make their living by way of the social media and digital technology industries.
Personally, I love social media and digital technology. I believe they can be extremely effective tools for the Kingdom. I believe we should leverage every platform available for advancing the Kingdom of God and the Word of God. For instance, twenty years ago, I used to spend large sums of money weekly to broadcast the gospel in other countries via radio. Today, through means such as podcasting, I can now reach much more people for free or less than a dollar a day.
But I fear that many people today have lost their way. They are drowning in the sea of social media and digital technology. These are like a drug to them they can’t live without. When these interfere with our ability to be productive in the workforce, this is a seriously bad thing. When we become so lost in our minuscule world of gadgets, tweets, sexting, selfies and the like that the sense of family in the home is lost, we are losing touch with real life.
Social media and digital technology are not bad in and of themselves. But how we use them can be devastating. Let’s get and maintain a life outside these. As Christians, I believe our priority should be God first, family second, productivity in the real world third, and social media and digital technology time last.
Copyright © 2014 by Frank King. All rights reserved.