I’ve been wanting to write this post since the first day I created this blog. But as with most things, I’ve been procrastinating and thought hmm, maybe it’s too controversial. Here we are a few months later and I can no longer ignore what I am sure is God prompting me to share my thoughts. I was even more convinced that I need to share this on my blog because last week whilst I had this blog post draft open on my laptop screen, this first paragraph accidentally published! No warning, no nothing. So apologies to anyone reading this for the second time lol.
But anyway, backstory over, let’s get into the topic of the day… Social Media. For Christians.
Think about what the average Christian person you follow on social media is like, even use yourself as an example. It seems like the prerequisite for “Christian” Christians is to be self proclaimed with a popular scripture tactically placed in their bio section. Or the subliminal YES, I’m a Christian and my hashtags prove it!
#GodFirst #Philippians413 #ChildOfGod
Bible verse in the bio but that’s where the compassion stops? You get the picture. But when you take away all of the gimmicks, what does our conduct on social media really say about us… What image are we presenting of Jesus Christ?
Understanding the Power of your Platform
First and foremost, I need you to understand that you are so powerful. I don’t have any fancy facts or figures for you guys but it’s pretty obvious that most people now are on Facebook, Twitter and/or Instagram just to name a few platforms. Personally, I’m active on all three. And this isn’t even restricted by age anymore – my Mum and all her friends love Facebook way more than I do and some of my Aunties have Instagram! Naturally this means that our profiles may be getting viewed by hundreds of thousands of people in their lifespan, both Christians and non-Christians alike. You may be thinking but I hardly have any friends or followers, nobody is watching me but you would be so surprised. Even your prospective employers are watching you. Closely.
This is the problem – it’s a sad reality that people are probably browsing social media far more than they are picking up a Bible to read the Word in its purest form, directly from God. So what does that mean for us as Christians? Those thoughtless emotional statuses we write like I HATE EVERYONE! or Not in the mood today – nobody talk to me speak volumes about the state of our heart. Think about it, if your heart is hardened towards people, it’s probably hardened towards God too. This doesn’t mean that as Christians we have to be robots without feelings, but consider where you vent your frustration. Your profile is somebody’s daily bread. What you are choosing to feed your friends, family and followers with everyday is so important and one day, you’ll be asked to give an account of yourself before God. Tweets and Facebook rants included!
11 It is written:
“‘As surely as I live,’ says the Lord,
‘every knee will bow before me;
every tongue will acknowledge God.’”
12 So then, each of us will give an account of ourselves to God.
13 Therefore let us stop passing judgment on one another. Instead, make up your mind not to put any stumbling block or obstacle in the way of a brother or sister.
These verses sum it up nicely. It can be daunting to think that something that you said in jest, anger, annoyance or whatever unjustified fleshly emotion could be causing somebody else to stumble. I often joke with people that “social media isn’t real life” but I’ve had to rethink that statement recently. Yes, the glossy photos of perfectly set breakfast tables on Instagram aren’t realistic. Yes, the many imperfections on my face appear reduced once I’ve slapped on a filter and some makeup. And yes, we tend to post our highs and not our lows. This doesn’t mean that social media isn’t real. It is very real! The users of social media and consumers of your content are real people. And how we conduct ourselves on these platforms as Christians can and will be called into question.
You are a 24/7 Ambassador for Christ
We can scream that we are Christians all day long but the proof is in our hearts and how that outwardly manifests to those we interact with. Although He was describing True and False Prophets at the time (Matthew 7:15-20), Jesus says it Himself: a good tree cannot produce bad fruit and a bad tree cannot produce good fruit. If you look at a person’s fruit, you will know who they truly are. We can’t keep tarnishing the name of God with our “bad fruit” all over our social media feeds. Being contradictory and ungodly on social media to fit in or otherwise (I like to call this Chameleon Christianity) will only lead those who already doubt Christianity into further disbelief.
2 Corinthians 5:20 describes us as Christ’s “ambassadors”. The dictionary defines ambassador as a representative or promoter of a specified activity. I like the word activity here because it just reminds me that Christianity is as much about doing as it is about saying. It’s an active lifestyle and not just a label. This encompasses everything from
- The way we dress in the pictures we share (controversial – I am extremely passionate about modesty but I’ll leave that debate for another day)
- The comments we write and the “jokes” we cosign by laughing at
- The events we attend
- And everything in between!
As ambassadors for Christ, we are called to be set apart and we can definitely enjoy the good fruits of social media without losing who we are in Christ.
12 Don’t copy the behaviour and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.
You are Not Too Small for God to Use You
The last point I want to make is a key one – you are not too small for God to use YOU! Before I created this website, I did have apprehensions about how seriously people would take me as a “Christian blogger” because my experience in both areas is a work in progress. I’m a growing Christian and I’m a growing writer. I did worry that I wasn’t necessarily qualified or even popular enough to start blogging, especially under the alias The Christyle Blogger. Not naming any names but I kept thinking about all the famous Christian twitter accounts and YouTubers and how I’m not like any of them. But I was wrong because 5 months later, we are here on blog post number twenty-something for wunms.co.uk and God is using little me to bless people. Complete strangers have literally told me so! And all the glory goes back to Him… it’s really cool 🙂
“Jacob was a cheater, Peter had a temper, David had an affair, Noah got drunk, Jonah ran from God, Paul was a murderer, Gideon was insecure, Miriam was a gossip, Martha was a worrier, Thomas was a doubter, Sarah was impatient, Moses stuttered, Abraham was old… and Lazarus was even dead.
God doesn’t call the qualified, He qualifies the called!”
So whether you’re a “social media influencer” like myself (I barely consider myself one but I guess I kind of am now), or you just use your accounts for your own leisure, never underestimate what God can use you and your platform to do.
Think about how you can use your small space on the internet for good. God wants us to separate ourselves from this fruitless social media culture of just being a Christian for show. A Christian with no substance. I pray that we continue to grow in our journies with Christ and that the world will desire to know our Father because it is so evident through how we conduct ourselves both on and offline – Amen!
How do you feel about Christians on social media? Does your faith play a factor in what you post? Let me know in the comments below, I’d love to hear more perspectives on this issue.
God bless you!