Thoughts of a messed up Christian saved by God's grace

Friday, April 28, 2017

Never un-friended

  Social media is a great thing, but not everything is great. We act in ways online that most of us would not act off line with people. One such way is un-friending. That wasn't even a word until Facebook came along. And it is something we do too easily. Can you imagine Jesus doing that if He had a Facebook page?

"Criticized Trump too much, Un-friend!" (That has happened to me)

"Criticized Obama too much. Un-friend!" (That has also happened to me)

"Posted too much about homosexuality." Un-friend! (That happened too....)

"Didn't 'like' my cat pictures." Un-friend! (I don't think that has happened)

"You post too often. Un-friend!" (That has happened)

  And can you imagine doing that off-line. Picture someone walking up to you and saying "Hey John, I don't like you questioning my voting decision and criticizing  the person I voted for. You are no longer my friend!"

 The idea of any normal person, much less a Christian, going up to someone and telling them they are no longer their friend for the reasons we do it online......is just ludicrous. So why is it OK online?

 I have un-friended people, and wonder sometimes if I should. Some cases are more extreme though, so should we un-friend or not?

Exhibit A:

  "Ron" added me as a friend last year. He is a young guy raised like me, and not living for God. He posted a lot of profanity, and went on a profanity laced rant after I posted something against marijuana.....which he obviously uses. I removed him.

Exhibit B:

"Jon" was a friend since Bible college. We never hung out, but got along and I enjoyed talking to him when I ran onto him.

 During the election, I re-tweeted a Twitter comment from the guy I ended up voting for, Evan McMullen (Independent). "Jon" replied and said if I wasn't for Trump, I was for Hillary and was for killing babies. I saw red and was also hurt. "Jon" knows good and well that I am pro-life, and was just insulting me because I wouldn't vote like him. I removed him and his wife.

Exhibit C:

   I deal with same-sex attractions and am involved in a ministry for people with unwanted same-sex attractions. A lot of men and women also using the ministry or who are active leaders have added me as a friend. I never had trouble until a few weeks ago. "Bob" had added me and had not interacted much with me. He had messaged me how much a blog post had encouraged him that I had written, and had "liked" some of my Facebook posts.

 This night, I was up late since I didn't have to work the next day. He messaged me and said he was struggling that day to feel masculine. I replied back that I have days like that. He then replied with a graphic description of what makes him feel masculine. I deflected and made an innocent comeback. He pursued with the sexual comments, so I told him good night and logged off.

 The next morning, I felt it best to remove him from my friends list, but he had already done so and blocked me. Ironic when he was the one in the wrong, but oh well.

Exhibit D:

  On a couple of occasions, I have gone through my Facebook friends. If I know a person has not interacted with me for several months, they go.

  I am not saying if I was right or wrong in any of these cases, but I would ask what would Jesus do in the cases where I was un-friended and when I did the un-friending. If Jesus used social media, would He ever un-friend someone? I cannot imagine that He would. This is the Jesus who promised to be with us through eternity. This is the Jesus who said nothing can separate us from His love. If that is true, than no Facebook post could ever cause Him to hit that "Unfriend" or "Block" button.

 And if we are to be like Jesus, should we do that? I really don't know. I don't want to be Facebook friends with people who use profanity, accuse me of something they know is untrue, or is just a plain jerk to me......yet Jesus takes far more than that......and Christians in other countries take a lot worse than that.

 This Jesus who we serve will never unfriend or block us. No matter what we do, He will never walk away. I believe we can walk away from Him, but He will never, ever desert us, or walk away. Others will. People from our own church and family may unfriend us online or off-line, but Jesus will never do such a thing.

 And by the way, it is a little nicer to use the "un-follow" feature. The other person never knows. Of course Jesus wouldn't do that either........


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