Dethroning my social media god

email[1]

My mornings had fallen into a predictable pattern.

  1. Wake up.
  2. Eventually roll out of bed.
  3. Shower.
  4. Proceed to my laptop.
  5. Read and answer emails.
  6. Read national and local news.
  7. Scroll down my Facebook feed.
  8. Take far too much time on 5, 6, and 7.
  9. Realize I’m running late.
  10. Rush to cook breakfast.
  11. Quickly read a few Bible verses while scarfing oatmeal.
  12. Pray in-between bites.
  13. Hurriedly finish my makeup and hair.
  14. Dash out the door to work.

Then one day, as I was wishing I felt stronger in my faith, it hit me.

An idol had crept into my life.

The God whom I claimed occupied “first place” in my heart had been displaced. [1]

I was prioritizing connecting with the internet over connecting with Jesus.

My morning “quiet time” with the Lord had been reduced to a few hurried crumbs of spiritual food.

No wonder my faith felt malnourished!

I thought back to the days before email and social media were at my fingertips . . .when spending time reading my Bible and praying were the most important parts of my morning routine.  I filled dozens of hand-written journals during those years, all evidence of an ongoing intimacy with God.

journaling[1]

It became clear to me that if I wanted to find that kind of connection again, something had to change.

So I dethroned my social media god.

Now when I’m done showering, I still head straight to my laptop.  But instead of checking email or going to the internet, I open my Bible and a Word document.

For three months, I’ve been giving God my morning “prime-time” as I slowly read through the book of Acts.  As I take time to savor Scripture, I type what I’m learning in my electronic “journal” (so far, it’s over 20 pages)!

It’s been a powerful experience—I’m not only retaining more of the content, I’m hearing God speak to my daily needs and am praying with more passion and depth.

When my quiet time with the Lord is finished, then I cook breakfast and take a few minutes to go online.

I still believe the internet, email, and social media can be a great tool for connecting with others, and even a means of receiving spiritual encouragement.

But if we’re not careful, it can crowd out deeper relationships—both with God and with people.

A dear friend’s daughter wrote a poem that includes the phrase, “Let us look less into screens and more into eyes.” 

Young Woman Discussing Problems With Counselor

How astute she is, as a woman in her twenties, to recognize that our culture’s obsession with electronic devices can rob us of authentic connections.

I encourage you to examine your heart.  Have any idols crept in that are robbing you of intimacy with God or others?

Author and speaker Lysa Terkeurst beautifully summarizes the core of the matter: “I don’t know exactly what following wholeheartedly after God will look like for you. But I do know that if we want to grow closer to God, we’ll have to distance ourselves from whatever is distracting us. We’ll have to lay aside whatever we are prone to delight in more than Him.” [2]

Proverbs 37:4 promises that if we delight ourselves in the Lord, he will meet the greatest desires of our heart. [3]

Let’s dethrone the lesser gods in our lives and find true satisfaction in a deeper relationship with Jesus.


References:

[1] “You shall have no other gods before me.” Exodus 20:3, New International Version

[2] From  How Can I Grow Closer to God? by Lysa Terkeurst

[3] “Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.” Proverbs 37:4, New American Standard Version

Additional reading:

Here’s a beautiful blog post by Vaneetha Randell on the importance of making Bible reading a priority:  Love Letters From God

 

8 thoughts on “Dethroning my social media god

  1. Joanie Yonker

    What an amazing post, Janer!!!!! I’ve found your words to be true in my own life, too. Thank you for putting this into beautifully written words.

    Like

  2. Lorna Northcutt

    Okay, Jane, now you are just meddling! Thank you for this “wake up call”. I will ashamedly admit that I, too, have put my computer and all that entails before time with God in the mornings. I really needed to read this. Thank you for being so honest. Love, Lorna

    Like

  3. kathy canning

    Hi Jane,

    I’m with you on this one, my dear sister! I too am studying Acts and it is amazing. My pattern has been to roll out of bed, get my coffee and hunker down with my Bible and journal. That time started getting squeezed down and some mornings not at all, so I decided to get up an hour earlier! Now again I am enjoying sweet times, hearing from Him. I cannot connect quickly. It is so worth prioritizing the time.

    Work is very rewarding – such a privilege to witness what God is doing in people’s hearts. I also have time every week with my 3 little granddaughters who are totally delightful, and Mom usually comes overnight on Saturdays and then we go to church together on Sundays. So, I consider myself blessed indeed!

    Love you,

    Kathy

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  4. Kathy, So great to hear from you! Thank you for sharing about the rewards of prioritizing time with God. I’m glad you are doing well and enjoying time with family. Love, Jane

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  5. Haha, Lorna. Your comment reminds me of when Bob Mc. would teasingly say, “Now you’ve gone from preachin’ to meddlin’! All kidding aside, I’m glad the blog was helpful to you. We can help hold one another accountable to keeping God first in our lives! Love to you.

    Like

  6. Excellent, excellent post. I’m right there with you. An immature and harmful poster on social media inadvertently helped me to step back and look at social media, what it does, and what all we do on social media. There’s a lot of good, but recently there’s been enough of the negative to warrant a purposeful pull back. A few days in, I’m more peaceful and focused. I’m enjoying everything around me more. I’m processing less information and focusing on what I really know. Instead of “doing social media,” I’m reading, memorizing scripture faster, listening to the Word on the radio, volunteering, donating, organizing, and spending time with God, with loved ones, and most importantly, IN godly, healthy spaces. Nice. 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Yvette, Thank you so much for commenting and also for choosing to follow my blog! It’s so good to hear how you are reaping the benefits of “dethroning” social media. Blessings to you, sweet sister in Christ.

    Liked by 1 person

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