“Why did you post that?” is a question I no longer want to ask myself. The question I would rather be asking is “Why am I posting this?”
Tensions have been high in the social media world these past couple of weeks. If you are on social media, I am sure you know why. I don’t wish to get into any specifics. I found myself so annoyed at the hate being spewed from all sides, that I removed myself from all platforms for a few days.
I found that social media was doing me more harm than good. I found myself angry at people and annoyed at many things. I began to “mute” friends and family on Instagram and “Unfollow” on Facebook.
As we all know, everyone has an opinion, and they are entitled to it, but what I was seeing was people outraged when you didn’t agree with them. I don’t like to make comments on high profile events happening at the time, because we generally do not have enough evidence and are running our mouths based on our emotions. Something I have learned the past couple of weeks is that facts don’t care about your feelings. It probably sounds a little cold and callous, but it’s true. In America, it seems we are fighting a war on racism that statistically doesn’t exist the way the media is portraying it, but of course, as I have learned over the years, people don’t do research.
The funny thing is that after this is all over, and all the facts come to light, no one will admit that they were wrong and quick to speak. So to go back to my first paragraph, I decided to ask myself a few questions before sharing anything on social media. I refuse to have arguments on any social media platform, so what I post is thought out ahead of time. However, there will always be someone available to pick a fight, and I just don’t answer anymore.
I wanted to share these questions with you so that you, too, can make deliberate decisions on what you will be sharing on social media. The one thing that should be shared at all times is the gospel; this is the only exception.
Here goes, before you click “post”, “share”, or “tweet” ask yourself the following.
Why am I posting this?
Will this glorify God? Will this be of benefit to anyone? Is it teaching a lesson? Is this informative? Do I want to be provocative? Will this dim the light of the gospel? Is it offensive?
Who is this intended for?
Who is your audience? Will they learn from this or be offended? Is it kind? It is lovely?
Is it controversial?
Sometimes you might want to share something controversial but be ready to defend your standpoint and also know that you will most likely not change anyone’s mind on the internet. I think controversial topics are best discussed in person.
Is this factual or am I being emotional?
Many times we share things because we feel some type of way. I’m sure, at this point in our lives, we have learned how fickle our emotions can be. It would not profit anyone to post something based on emotion because once the feelings pass, we might regret it. This would probably cause more harm than good.
Will this help grow me as a person?
To be honest, the answer to this one is generally “no,” in my opinion. Nothing I have ever posted on social media has grown me as a person. At the very least, I can say I learned to stand my ground when it comes to my stance on abortion after one post, but that is all. This doesn’t mean we don’t post it, but rather, think about what it is and how it may affect the way you present yourself to the digital world before sharing it.
You aren’t obligated to run through a whole checklist before posting something, just keep some of these questions in mind before you share. You might discover, as I have over the past couple of days, maybe you don’t need to be on social media as much as you think you do.
I hope this post has helped you to be more thoughtful of the things you share because they do have some consequences. Just remember, do all things for the glory of Christ.
SDG – “Soli Deo Gloria”