So I have given up Facebook for the Lenten season. I must admit that it sounds more simiple than it is. It might even sound a little vain or silly to some. However, for me it is a REAL sacrifice. I don't use social media to network for jobs or to jockey for position. I don't use it to meet people or to "hook up" as some people might. I don't even use it to further my own agenda, promote myself or my "causes". I use it to connect.
I am a stay at home mom who home educates her older three and is currently potty training her two, two-year olds. Even though I am not "talking" to these people I feel connected to them. It also gives me a venue to be heard, validated and respected. At least that's what I FEEL is happening through my posts/communique on FB. I must admit that I use it to see what people are doing in their lives. Quite often I just "lurk" or "stalk" people. I have placed to much value and enjoyment on finding out what other people are doing, thinking, experiencing. It was as if I found my identity in living through these other people. Seeing that I had received a message or a comment made me smile. I was almost giddy. Since I got my Android powered phone (Christmas 2010) I would check FB probably 20 times a day.
So after I got over the initial shock of not being on FB constantly I have actually learned to like it. I must admit that last night I got onto FB to check my messages because my sis-in-law was diagnosed with cancer last week and I knew that my brother was using FB as a venue to update everyone on her condition/surgery results etc. I also had received an email from a friend that said she sent me a FB message. So I checked it briefly but myself on "offline" status so I wouldn't be tempted to chat with people. I also checked my page because someone had said they left some info for me there. The entire deal lasted less than five minutes. It was NICE.
I am prayerfully considering giving up FB alltogether. I want connection, don't ge me WRONG. I crave connection. However, I'm finding it other ways these days. I started a new exercise class on Wednesday nights. It is small, but has some godly women that I am enjoying getting to commune with. I am calling people more often. I'm texting and sending emails. I'm blogging again...YEAH. I actually have written letters and helped my children write letters and thank you cards. Since Ash Wednesday we've memorized a portion of Scripture that has challenged us all. Face to face coffee talks with my husband at 5:30 am have left my heart filled and my "love tank" overflowing. I've communed with God and myself as I have walked/hiked and run the trails in Montreat. The quiet has touched me deeply. Taking the time to write in my journal has forced me to view my life through the lens of reality and personal reflection, perception and honesty. These past few days have been filled with integrity, honesty, connection and I've LOVED it!!! I've had lunch with friends, dates with my husband, times of prayer and sharing. It's been glorious. As I've studied God's Word (specifically Hebrews 11) I've shared honestly with my Bible study/LIFE group. What a joy to be connected to those people.
Although Lent is a time of somber introspection and "giving up" things I feel as if I've gained MUCH more than I've given away. I'm so blessed.