Let’s Talk About Social Media
5 Scripture Tips For Social Media Consumption
Ever considered the spiritual impact of your social media surfing? Just as what you eat affects your health, your media “diet” has an impact on your heart and soul. Here’s some advice from the Bible to help you make the most of your time online:
- “Whatever is true, whatever is honourable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is gracious, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.” (Phil 4:8)
Do you use social media to look for what is good, beautiful and true in the world? Constantly seeking out the sensational, the ugly and the vulgar, hardens the heart and eats away at your ability to sense the goodness of God. As Jesus said, “Where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.” (Matt 6:21)
- “Do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are of God; for many false prophets have gone out into the world.” (1 Jn 4:1)
It’s hard to sort faith from fiction when the Internet abounds with religious prophecies, hoaxes and conspiracy theories. When in doubt, test the claims against the Catechism, or seek guidance from Church authorities. Don’t share claims of supernatural phenomena until you have verified that the Church approves of them.
- “See to it that no one makes a prey of you by philosophy and empty deceit, according to human tradition, according to the elemental spirits of the universe, and not according to Christ.” (Col 2:8)
Your faith may be tested by the multitude of religious claims out there. The Catholic Church’s claim to the fullness of Truth is hotly contested by those who believe that their own religion – or no religion at all – is superior. Equip yourself to face these challenges by rooting yourself firmly in Christ through prayer and the Sacraments, study and fellowship.
- “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves. You will know them by their fruits… Every sound tree bears good fruit, but the bad tree bears evil fruit.” (Matt 7:15-17)
Many of us “follow” social media personalities whose views and style we admire. But take a closer look, especially if they claim to speak for Faith and morals. Is their tone encouraging, fair and charitable? Or do they use fear and stereotyping to create an “us versus them” mentality that prevents us from seeing our neighbour as a fellow child of God?
- “The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control…” (Gal 5:22-23)
After a bout of social media surfing, how do you feel? Happy that you got to re-connect with friends or catch up with your hobbies? Jealous or judgemental of others; obsessed with buying the latest gadgets; or furious at the latest outrage to go viral? If your media activity is destroying your peace of heart and hurting your relationships, this might be a sign for you to cut back.