I remember hearing about Facebook just as I was in the midst of trying to figure out how to best monitor our kids’ activity on My Space.
Facebook was apparently much better than My Space. All the cool kids were migrating there. By cool kids I don’t mean just pre-teens. My sister-in-law who is an early adopter of all things cool was happy to let me know she was up and running and already had lots of old and faraway friends she was communicating with!
Honestly, I was too busy to really care about juggling one more thing in my day.
I had three kids trying to get through the awkward stage of life where your feet could double as your skis and I was juggling several businesses. The whole thing sounded like another time drain and potential forced frontier of parenting.
But once your kids get on board, you’d better be there for covert monitoring purposes. (Wow, Mr. Zuckerberg, parenting got complicated super quick for us moms thanks to your boy genius mind! God bless your mother! I can only imagine what steering that force of nature was like.)
Fast-forward seven years; most women are on Facebook for an average of 38 minutes each day or 266 minutes a week. I’m no computer genius but that is roughly 13,870 minutes or 231 hours a year!
Of course, most of our kids are long gone from Facebook and have moved on to Instagram and Snapchat. (I think the same people who come up with names for paint colors and ice cream flavors name social media platforms!)
I recently took a yearlong sabbatical from social media. With kids who are now adults, I had no need to police their activity and quite frankly I had burned out after acting as “social media maven” for several years in our business.
I had come to the end of trying to create buzz and excitement when the truth was I was dying on the inside and in the midst of a long illness on the outside.
Facebook (along with several other social media platforms) had begun to engender other f-words in my vocabulary (Easy now, good Christian women. Don’t take it quite that far!) Words like fake, fear and failure hung around my neck and clung to my tired aching heart.
Perhaps you’ve heard about the countless studies showing that social media for many, if not most of us, has contributed to a rise in our depression, loneliness and anxiety levels. It should come as no surprise that when you give yourself to reflecting off of others’ carefully filtered and edited stories for 231 hours a year it takes up some significant space in your soul. ( It’s sort of funny because we all know life can be hard for everyone, but we can get tricked into thinking our own life is more than lackluster after consuming everyone else’s happy moments for that much time!)
So, there I was with 231 hours in a year to face my own book.
Try to imagine reclaiming 231 hours to wander and listen to your heart’s deepest longings and to get reacquainted with the girl in the mirror. (Exhilarating and terrifying all at once, right?)
Well Hello, Dear Numb Weary Heart,
This is your time to soak in the stillness and breathe. Breathe in deeply. Breathe out long.
We’ve been running hard and fast for as long as I can remember. Busyness (once called Life) has kept you so wound up and convinced you your only option is to stay on the gerbil wheel.
This is your time to listen and linger and to feel the beating in our chest, slow and steady, no more frantic pounding for you.
There are so many beautiful parts of you just waiting to get reacquainted, so many gifts you’ve long forgotten waiting to be unwrapped and rediscovered. They just need some time and space in order to come out of hiding.
There is so much more to you than a snapshot of momentary happiness, filtered cleverness or edited spontaneity. There is a real you, unlike anyone else, who brings a special sparkle to life and to the lives of others!
It’s time to remember the things and relationships that bring you deep, lasting joy. When you do those things and embrace those people, you will find yourself fully present with a joy that can’t help but bubble up out of your heart and onto your face (your honest to goodness real, beautiful face 😉 !
You were made to beat with a love that reflects the face of The One who began writing the amazing story of you long before you were seen by the light of day. He has always known you.
See, here’s the truth. He desires for you to able to rest in the truth that He more than likes you. He wants to more than friend you. He longs for you to know the truth about who you really are. He deeply adores the real you.
Come and put your full weight down in the stillness of His presence and friendship, precious one. Come and enjoy slowing long enough to be present in this moment.
Stillness is where His whisper becomes louder than all the noise.
Rest is where His deep friend-ing finds time and space to grow.
Look long into His face. It’s time to get back to being really you. It’s time to write a new chapter in your book- XO
If God had a refrigerator, your picture would be on it. If He had a wallet, your photo would be in it. He sends you flowers every spring & a sunrise every morning. Face it, sweet friend. He is CRAZY about YOU! Max Lucado
God has designs on our future… and He has designed us for the future. He has given us something to do in the future that no one else can do. Ruth Senter
PS And by the way, if you should decide to take a break from social media, but would like to receive an occasional blog post in your email, you can subscribe by hitting the FOLLOW button in the lower right hand corner of your screen. Hugs!