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Jun 01, 2017 by Jonathan Malm

7 Things Christians Need To Stop Doing On Social Media

I spend more time on social media than I do talking to real people. I’m willing to bet you do too. And unfortunately, Christians are sometimes the worst people to encounter on social media. Hey, I’ve been guilty of it too.

Jonathan Malm
Jonathan Malm is a creative entrepreneur and writer. He is the author of Created for More, a 30-day devotional to help you develop a more creative mind. He lives in San Antonio, Texas where he roasts his own coffee beans and cooks gourmet meals for his wife.

 

It shouldn’t be this way. Just like Christians should be magnetic in real life, we should be the ones everyone wants on their friend list. So here are seven things Christians should stop doing on social media in order to start turning that around.

1. Complaining/Ranting on Social Media

When Paul tells us to “do everything without complaining” in Philippians 2:14, he’s talking about everything—even social media. It goes on to say that when we avoid this sort of thing, we show ourselves to be pure and blameless in a perverse generation. And through this, we can be light to the world.

We’re called to go into all the world and make disciples—for most of us, our world is social media. Want to reach your world? Start by not complaining and ranting to it, no matter how much you want to.

2. Arguing with People We Disagree With

That same verse in Philippians tells us not to argue. Besides that, though, you’ll never be able to change someone’s opinion in a Facebook comment. Instead, you’ll just drive a wedge between you and that other person. Also, you never know what your strong rhetoric is doing to people who are watching in on the debate.

Even with emojis, it’s hard to have a friendly debate on social media. If you really want to talk about the issues, call the person up and take them out to coffee. Discuss it there privately and in friendly way.

3. Posting Opinions that Alienate Unsaved Friends

I get it; abortion is a horrible thing. But posting that meme about how abortion is murder isn’t the best way to reach your friends. You never know how many of your followers have had an abortion in their past. Imagine what a post like that does for a person’s day.

We are called to be an encouragement to those we come into contact with. It’s hard to encourage and show love when we’re sharing our strong opinions without context or grace layered in.

4. Criticize Our Own

As believers, we are part of a family. Just like you wouldn’t put your uncle on blast on social media, don’t do that to the pastor down the street. It’s easy to hate on megachurch pastors or televangelists. But regardless of how you feel about them, they’re your family.

Do you think your friends on Facebook will want to join our family if they see you criticizing them behind their backs? Not gonna happen.

5. Preaching Your Agenda

There’s a line from an old Tree63 song that has hit me so hard over the years: “I shout truth at you without love for you.” Unfortunately, preaching is a one-way conversation. But that’s not how social media works. Social media is about listening just as much as speaking.

If you’re only speaking and not listening, that’s not showing love. Don’t be so quick to preach your agenda. Listen. Be gentle. Ask questions. Show love first, then if they ask you can share your agenda.

6. Taking Simplistic Approaches to Social Issues

Gun control, #blacklivesmatter, Planned Parenthood. Man, these are tough issues, steeped in emotion. It’s easy to share that biased article or post a meme or use a sarcastic hashtag. But none of those things fix the problems. Be part of the solution by joining the discussion. Don’t short-circuit it by reducing it to something so simple.

7. Posting Things to Make People Jealous

I’m guilty. That amazing sunset and my Pumpkin Spice Latte…I know it’ll make everyone jealous to see. I need to stop doing that. It’s deceptive at best—you know I’m getting bit by mosquitos and my wife is feeling neglected as I try to set up that perfect picture.

Let’s look at social media as a chance to build people up, not tear them down. Social media is our world. Let’s make it a better place.

So what would you add to the list? What do you think Christians need to stop doing on social media?

This article was written by Jonathan Malm and originally appeared at his blog. Find it here


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