This week I started reading our ladies Bible study book, No Other Gods: Confronting Our Modern-Day Idols by Kelly Winter. And boy, it's not taking long to feel convicted of an area of sin I was already aware of to begin with. And if that wasn't enough, everywhere I turn, I see it again. I just went over to favorite photographer Tara Whitney's blog to check out some family photos and get inspiration before doing a photoshoot for a friend tomorrow, and there it was again, as she shares:
"It's just all too easy. It's too easy to get sucked in, caring about things I don't need to be caring about. It's too easy for me to avoid the things that are truly important to me with stupid time sucks.... But I find myself spending too much time reading the words of a lot of people I don't know, and some that I don't even like. Because it's so easy to do. Because there are things to procrastinate. Or there are people who I know that read them, and so I think I need to as well, in order to keep up. I mean, hey, I don't want to miss out. WHAT IF I MISS SOMETHING REALLY GREAT?!"
Facebook. It sucks me in like nobody's business. I'm a person with great compassion. I CARE about you, I really truly care. I want to know your woes so I can encourage you with kind words. I don't care if you're my best friend, someone I know from the past, or someone I just met, I still CARE. If you have a question, I want to answer. If you share a blessing, I want to rejoice with you. If you share something funny, I want to laugh with you. If you need prayer, I will pray. I want you to know I'm there with you, no matter what journey you're on. You're not alone. You matter. And I care. And I want you to know it.
And so. I compulsively check for updates at least hourly all throughout the day. And during high times--mornings and evenings--it's even more so. It's on my mind always. YOU'RE on my mind. When we're in the car. When I'm watching a movie with my hubby. When I'm sitting waiting for the school bus.
I don't know if it's because I stay home all day and virtually see no one except my own children and I'm CRAVING that social outlet. I don't know if it's because I'm bored. I don't really know.
I just know how I AM. And I know it's consuming me, stealing my thoughts, my time, my day.
You see, it's not Facebook itself. All the reasons stated above of why I like it are actually a good thing. It's just the need to find balance, to maintain self-control that leaves me struggling.
Kelly Winter writes, "Most of us think of an idol as a statue of wood, stone, or metal worshiped by pagan people... In biblical terms, it is something other than God that we set our hearts on (Luke 12:29), that motivates us (1 Cor. 4:5), that masters and rules us (Ps. 119:133), or that we trust, fear, or serve. (Isa. 42:17; Matt. 6:24; Luke 12:4-5)" She also includes a definition that says, "It may well come in the form of an overattachment to something that is, in itself, perfectly good." And as John Calvin put it, "The evil in our desire typically does not lie in what we want, but that we want it too much."
So there it is. My idol. Facebook. It seems sooo ridiculous. But for me, that's what it is. Really.
Part 2 I'll share what I'm going to do about it, and how to establish and carry out limits for myself.
But for today, I'll just ask, What is your idol?