by Jessica Fralin
A few years ago, social media smashed onto the scene and into our hearts. And if we’re honest, nothing has ever been the same.
From our living room couches, we can stream sermons and shop sales, balance our bank accounts and buy groceries, find a date or a diet. Social media has dropped convenience and innovation right into our laps. Well, that, and voices. So, so many voices.
These are days when those who speak most deeply into our souls can be those we’ve never met. Whether celebrities we admire or simply kindred spirits we adore, we allow people we follow online to speak into who we are, maybe more than the people who surround us in real life.
In that way, social media is running us. Sure, we may manage our accounts, which gives off the air of being in charge. But every post, sent or seen, sends a message. When we allow those messages to become the foundation of our identities, social media has begun to define us. And that’s something it was never meant to do.
I’ll be the first to stand up for social media. It plays a valuable role in my work and in my community. I’ll bet it plays an important part in your world, too. I enjoy it, and I’m keeping it around. But while I’m on my soapbox, I want you to know exactly what I am defending, at the risk of sounding redundant: media that is social. I want a place to share my thoughts and to hear thoughts shared. A place to rediscover hope when the world feels broken and to discuss things that matter when the world feels trivial. A place to make and keep friends, across the street and across the globe.
What I do not want is a menagerie of sites that tell me who I am supposed to be—or worse, tell me that who I am presently is not enough. I do not want the fires of insecurity to be stoked by the words that scroll across my screen. I do not want voices to whisper new definitions into my heart, chaining it to them even when they are untrue.
I have already been defined. My worth has been set at the highest price. I am swimming in love deeper than I can fathom. My beauty sits on the firm foundation of being artfully, skillfully and uniquely fashioned.
Yes, my soul has already been given the most beautiful of definitions by the very One who dreamed it up and formed it. And not just my soul. Yours, too. You have a perfect Creator. His name is Jesus. He is not only the definer of our days, but the sustainer of them.
Jessica Fralin is an author, blogger, and a worship leader who seeks to convey the message of love, acceptance, and worth that can only be found in the gospel. On any given day, you can find her holding a guitar, a book, or a latte and passionately teaching others who they are—and why it matters—when it comes to social media.
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