Trick #1: The Need to “Express Yourself” (Get This off My Chest)
Have you ever seen a social media post that begins with any of these phrases?
“I was just thinking about this and I had to get this out...”
“I have seen this taking place and I feel like I have to say something...”
“I can’t take it anymore this is driving me crazy...”
“I am so tired of seeing people do this...”
So many times I’ve seen people jump on social media because they just “have to say something.” Sometimes people are expressing things that are fun and happy but far too many are responding or reacting to something that is negative or that is happening in our society.
The first question that jumps into my mind is why? Why is it that the moment something happens, the first thing we do is grab our phones and hit record? Social media makes it very accommodating for you to do this. In fact, my wife pointed this out to me, and I will use Facebook as an example.
Before you post, the question Facebook asks is “what’s on your mind?” It's so easy to either start talking or start writing something about how you feel in the moment. Walking around with social media hotspots (aka cellphones) in our pockets doesn’t help either. If this is handled incorrectly (many times it is) this falls right into Satan’s hand.
The quick, emotional response—especially if it’s an angry or negative one—is often wrong. It ends up causing harm and can do great damage. How many times have you seen people have to walk back or explain something they said because they reacted quickly and emotionally? Nevertheless, there is a solution.
My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry. – James 1:19
I remember Herm Edwards (football coach and former ESPN commentator) used to say these words, “Don’t hit send.” This is exactly what James is saying. If you feel that you are going to respond emotionally in a situation (I’m referring to negative emotions) follow the advice of James. Stop. Think. Let me add one more, pray.
If this thing gets you so riled up that you can’t take it anymore, then before you tell the world about it, why not tell your Heavenly Father about it? This may come as a surprise, but the truth is, most of the people you are talking to on social media don’t really care what you think. But God does. Notice 1 Peter 5:7:
Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.
The next time the urge hits you to tell somebody something, tell God. After telling him and “expressing yourself,” chances are you will no longer feel the need to hit post, share, or send.
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