how social media hypes the wrong news

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I remain convinced that people want to hear about, talk about, learn about, and be encouraged in a deeper walk with God.

IMG_3854Just about every morning I sit at my desk, rest my fingers on the keyboard, and wonder about the direction I should take as I write a new post for the day.

The challenge is not lack of material, or inspiration (life is both inspiring and loaded with great material on a daily basis) so much as where to concentrate my thinking. I do try to remain within the parameters of life, gratitude, faith, & passion – but I also want to stay current, and to reach as many people as possible.

“Bloggers need to give readers what they want!” advised one social media guru; “the blogosphere wants controversy, it wants to be provoked, it wants to get angry. If you’re not upsetting people then you’ll never get that many hits…”

Well, two things. First, this blog is not about how many hits I get (although I’m always happy to reach more people). Then, and this is important, people want the wrong things sometime; or, maybe people don’t really want what they think they want, or what content providers say they want?

So there’s definitely a sense of responsibility at the front of my thinking when I post, and a call to leadership in the way that I write.

CONTROVERSY vs A DEEPER WALK WITH GOD:

If I was following “The Formula”, then I’d have led today’s post with something about Hillary Clinton and yesterday’s FPI press conference. I could have upset the conspiracy theorists who believe the Clintons control the Justice Department… or ticked off the progressives by expressing my misgivings regarding Clinton’s penchant for secrecy… or commented on the way otherwise intelligent people tend to parrot whatever they hear on talk radio – hour after hour after hour – confirming the theory that lies repeated often enough eventually become assumed to be truths.

But –  instead – I remain convinced that people want to hear about, talk about, learn about, and be encouraged in a deeper walk with God. I believe that the best response to the cynicism, the mistrust, and the anger that pervades social media is to invite one-another into a conversation about what it means to live together as brothers and sisters. And I continue to trust that – given the opportunity – most Americans are more than ready to eschew  belligerence and embrace a level of dialog where we encourage one-another, disagree respectfully, and celebrate the diversity that makes our culture so unique.

  • I remain convinced that people want to hear about, talk about, learn about, and be encouraged in a deeper walk with God.
  • I believe that the best response to the cynicism, the mistrust, and the anger that pervades social media is to invite one-another into a conversation about what it means to live together as brothers and sisters.
  • And I continue to trust that – given the opportunity – most Americans are more than ready to eschew  belligerence and embrace a level of dialog where we encourage one-another, disagree respectfully, and celebrate the diversity that makes our culture so unique.

ATTENTION-SEEKING: Most of the escalating rhetoric is, in my opinion, attention-seeking behavior. That’s true for the politicians, it’s true for the news organizations, and it’s true when it comes to much of what we read in social media.

We can either encourage such poor behavior by participating, and “clicking,” and “sharing” – or we can begin to align ourselves (and our attention, and our conversations with others) with the transformational and life-affirming nourishment of the Living Way.

Jesus has something pertinent to say about all this foolishness:

“Come to me all of you who are tired from the heavy burden you have been forced to carry. I will give you rest. Accept my teaching. Learn from me. I am gentle and humble in spirit. And you will be able to get some rest. Yes, the teaching that I ask you to accept is easy. The load I give you to carry is light.” – Matthew 11:28-30

In love, and because of love – DEREK

(so – in the language of social media – “share this if you agree” !!)

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4 comments

  1. You have written an excellent piece here. People using media to stir up strife to get a moment of the spotlight has become too common, We need to focus on sharing the love of Jesus and not our opinions. My opinion will not make any changes in this world, but His Word and His love transforms us into new and better beings. Thanks for writing this.

    Liked by 1 person

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