Students often tell me that Facebook is a distraction to their studies and their faith. I agree. It is easy to get sucked into a world of clicking through profiles, photo’s, groups, interesting fan pages. The hours spent on facebook certainly can be detrimental to ones study habits, not to mention real live socializing. Some students have even decided to stop using facebook for a week. One student decided to close his account. Kudos to them!
In my work, facebook is nearly a requirement. There are some students that I can’t get in touch with unless I facebook them. Then as if by magic I receive a response within minutes. I recently posted the announcement of our son’s birth on facebook. Over the next few hours and days I had hundreds of messages to sort through of congratulations! It was a lot of fun. It demonstrated the power of facebook.
All of this got me thinking. If there are that many people who saw that my son was born, how could I use that for greater purposes. During that same time I was receiving hundreds of messages from friends in congratulations, I was struggling to spend time reading and studying scripture. It suddenly dawned on me that there are hundreds of people on facebook that could be an accountability structure for me.
On Dec 16, 2009 I began writing a summary of my evening study of Romans. Every day I plan to write a summary of my evening study. Since then I have found a number of other benefits to writing the summary each day. First, I use twitter as my client, which then posts to facebook. Twitter has a 140 character limit. The limit forces me to understand the passage so I can succinctly write a description. I have fun choosing different words to try to convey the meaning in my own words. Second, I have had several people comment on my posts. So I know that others are reading and thinking about the word of God! That’s good. Finally, it is honing my skills as s writer. 140 characters really makes me become a word smith!
Who knew facebook and social media could help me strengthen my relationship with God?
Question: What is your experience with social media? Good or bad?