Tag Archives: social media

Out of the Loop


I have discovered something about myself in the past two days, well I actually knew before but it was reinforced.  I do not function well when I don’t know what is going on.  This has, over the years, been a cause of stress when organizations or activities are first getting started, during that bedlam period before people settle into their roles.  It is even more of an issue when, as in the current situation, there is a health issue with family members who are a long way away and I am not there with them.  It isn’t as if my presence on the scene would be of any help to anyone else other than moral support, but I would still rather be there.  I know that things are being well looked after, and if there is anything important happening the news will get to me quickly.

 

From this remote location (remote from the situation, not from civilization) all I can really do is pray that God will be there for all of my family members, for the health care workers, etc.  Why is it, that when God is such a great power and comfort, that it feels like nothing to pray?  I wrote it at the beginning of this paragraph, and you hear people say it all the time, “Well, all we can do is pray!”  It is almost as if we are saying that all the actually useful things have been done already and as some kind of futile last resort we might try prayer.

 

Social media has been much maligned for taking people away from real contact with people.  I would like to add another perspective.  Prayer is far more powerful than most of us, even those who pray regularly, realize.  For years my grandmother used to have a prayer list delivered to her by her church, long after she was able to get out to services.  Every day she would sit down and purposefully spend some time in prayer for the people on the list, whether she knew them or not.  Face Book has in some ways become a global prayer list.  Depending on one’s privacy settings, if you post that a loved one is ill all of your friends will know about it, many of them will add your relative to their prayer lists, and their friends may do so as well.

 

However you come upon the information that someone is in trouble; in person, through word of mouth, or through social media, take a quiet moment and send a prayer or just positive thoughts to God on behalf of that person, it isn’t “just a prayer,” it is powerful because it is love!

Social Media Allows Canadians To Show Patriotism


O Canada
Our home and native land,
true patriot love
in all thy sons command.

With glowing hearts we see thee rise,
the true north strong and free.
From far and wide, O Canada,
we stand on guard for thee!

God keep our land
glorious and free!
O Canada we stand on guard for thee!
O Canada we stand on guard for thee!

Today is Canada Day, our equivalent of the 4th of July.  Growing up I remember going to barbecues and things on the 1st of July and when I was older playing the clarinet or sax in the Canada Day parades in our area.  I also remember, however, crossing the border to play in 4th of July parades and there was a huge difference.  Even when it is not the national holiday celebrating the founding of the country, in the United States the patriotism is almost palatable.  People wear the flag, fly the flag, pledge allegiance to the flag etc. 365 days of the year.  In Canada there has always seemed to be a rather apologetic tone to any display of national pride.

This seems to have changed in the past few years, at least on the social media sites.  Perhaps because we aren’t face to face with people, we seem to be much more comfortable trumpeting our pride.  For July 1st it started around a week ago as one-by-one most of my friends changed their profile pictures to Canadian flag, maple leafs, beavers etc.  This morning we were all cheering for Canada, wishing her a happy birthday etc.  It is really quite beautiful, even if we did need the cover of social media to allow it out!

HAPPY CANADA DAY EVERYONE!!

Half-way: How Goes The Fast?


If you have been following my blog for a while you may recall that I made the decision to give up the distractions of Face Book and Twitter for Lent.  Last Sunday was the third Sunday of Lent, two more Lenten Sundays and we will be at Passion Week beginning with Palm Sunday. We are basically half-way to Easter and can begin to see the end of our fasts (not all fasts involve food and many people don’t give something up for Lent at all).  I thought it was a good time to touch base.


I didn’t realize before that the primary use of my Black Berry was checking FB and Twitter, but I can go days without recharging it now.  It isn’t very draining to check my email and blog stats and after that is done there isn’t any other reason to have the screen on.


So, has this change in my habit made a difference in the amount of time I have my focus on God?  Yes and no.


I have done pretty well at keeping up with Bible reading and reflections and blog postings.  I had time and focus for preparing a couple of services I led recently and for the course on church polity which I am taking. Less time with social-media distractions has led to more time spent on the crossword puzzle book I got for Christmas several years ago and more time spent hanging out with my kids watching TV.  I’m not sure they are thrilled, but I need the social contact.


I am an extrovert in many ways.  I gain my energy and strength from contact with other people, although I can be very quickly drained by negative contact.  While I am with people at work all day, when I leave I only have one or two built-in social activities in my week.  I now realize to what extent I have come to rely on social media to give me that feeling of connection with others.  I have not yet concluded whether or not this is a good thing.


More quiet time has also given me time to run things over (and over) in my head.  This is almost always a negative thing.  One might think it was good, as solutions might be found that way, but it doesn’t tend to work that way for me.  I am more likely to find solutions in discussion while in my head I just run around in circles.

Overall I would say that I’m doing ok with Lent this year.  I’m not totally focused on the spiritual realm, but then meals need to be cooked and work done.  I’m not sure if I will go back to my social media sites as much after Easter.  It has been interesting to note that with no Twitter presence other than one post to announce my blog each day, I have been gaining followers in the past couple weeks.  Maybe it is true that less is more?