I get up every morning and grab my phone. I push the blue “f” app button on my screen and wait. With anticipation I am instantly connected to hundreds of friends plus my friends, friends. I see that my friend’s morning started out rough. I laugh at what my nephew said yesterday. I learn that my friend’s dad made it through surgery. I am reconnected to an old classmate. I see pictures that make me smile and posts that make me cry. I am on Facebook!
I quickly latched on to Facebook and found myself entertained and acquainted with friends; reacquainted with those in my past. Before we even moved to Nederland, our family was friended by many here whom we had never met (talk about being encouraged).
I must mention that before I had my own Facebook, I shared an account with Jason. I was kicked off of his Facebook account when I made too many girly comments under his name like –“too cute” and “so precious!!!!” Not long ago I was on Hayden’s Facebook (yes I’m a nosy Rosie) but I forgot I was logged in under his name. I remembered I needed to make a birthday announcement so that Rylie could be showered with birthday wishes from hundreds of friends. It said something like “Our toot and joy; our constant source of laughter turns six today”. Hayden got lots of comments about unbrotherly language. I became resolved to post and comment to my target audience alone.
Pretty much everybody has their own Facebook account. In fact, there more than 845 million active users as of February. If not a Facebook, you still have a social outlet; an outlet where you discuss injustices in the world. You share what’s on your mind; maybe it’s about that driver that cut you off bringing about road rage or how you made a killer meatloaf wrapped in bacon. My Dad, though not on Facebook, has several outlets. I think he has coffee and donuts with friends a couple mornings a week at the church office. People stop by his shop on Main Street just to chat. He’s even had great conversations with people on the bench at Wal-Mart. No matter our assembly, we rant. We rave. We listen and we learn. All this brings to light our need to relate. God made us to be in relationship; in relationship with one another. We get that. But do we get that God wants and even yearns for us to be in relationship with him?
God, who never slumbers, waits for us. Just as we check for notification to see if our friend has responded, He waits for us to wake up in the morning and say - "Loved that Sunrise”! He longs for us to thank him for a good night sleep and good test results. He wishes for us to tell him how worried we are about that family member who’s hurting. And I’ll bet he doesn’t even mind us telling him what we had at Starbucks that morning. He never scrolls past our name and he never quickly hits the like button. He always comments. And he always has his own posts and personal messages waiting to be read.
God has sent a friend request to each person he has lovingly created. Some of us have accepted that request and find joy in talking to and hearing from him all day and every day. For some of us, he is still waiting. Sadly some have hit the ignore request button. There are also those of us who have accepted his friend request, but have chosen to hide him. Maybe he has been hidden because he may say something that we don’t want to hear. Do we quickly scroll past when we see his name because he says too much or wants too much from us? Maybe some have just thoughtlessly added him to their friend list because it would seem wrong not to.
God has a Facebook. He intimately knows both those who rely on his daily love and those who have ignored his request. I am ashamed to say that I thrive off of Facebook love. I actually have felt disappointment when a message has not received a response; when a post or picture has gone unliked and without comment. I love seeing those little red numbers at the top of my Facebook page. Upon a click, I can be uplifted and affirmed. But unlike Facebook whose love quickly fades and leaves me yearning for more, my friend Jesus is always there!
*Though I have been reminded through Facebook of my constant need for my best friend Jesus, I am thankful for my Facebook friends and family. Like Paul said, “For though I am absent from you in body, I am present with you in Spirit…” -Colossians 2:5. It is in that same presence that I have received your encouragement, learned from your experiences, shared in your joys and sorrows, heard your laughter and felt your hugs. I am thankful for you!