This pastor knocked this right out of the park. If you’re a social media fanatic, you’d better put on your cup for this one… it’s gonna hurt!
Warriors and Wildmen podcaster and Pastor, Rich Witmer wrote one heckuva post on the W&W Facebook page.
Facebook CEO, Mark Zuckerberg wanted his social media platform to be the way of the future for ‘a sense of community’ and replace things like churches, Little League, and other community organizations.
But it’s more than that — Facebook has altered how we interact with people within those other communities, and how we interact once we’ve left a church.
Rich points out that Facebook, in particular, can create a toxic environment that is potentially damaging to congregations.
“Social Media and How it Affects Churches When Members Leave Badly.” – Rich WitmerBefore the phenomenon of social…
Here is Rich’s post reprinted in full:
“Social Media and How it Affects Churches When Members Leave.”
– Rich Witmer
Before the phenomenon of social media, the way people left a church was very different: They would decide to leave a church for many different reasons; they would talk to their close friends and sometimes even have a meeting with the pastor; and then they would leave. The initial reaction of the congregation was why? Afterward, most people would simply move on and maintain a few relationships with friends who still belonged to that church. But others would schedule meetings with members to air their grievances to malign the pastor, leaders, or the church. They would then encourage others to leave, sometimes attempting to split the church. These things were dealt with easily enough. But then Facebook came along…
Social media — Facebook in particular — has changed all that. When some people leave a church, they feel the need to post a few things on social media:
1. Show everyone how happy they are since they left.
2. Show everyone how wonderful their marriage is since they left.
3. Show everyone how happy their children are since they left.
4. Put on display the new things they buy to prove how God has blessed them since they left.
5. Post photos of themselves at their new church.
6. Let everyone know how awesome their new church is.
7. Post photos with all the other members who have left (to reinforce their story).
They simply don’t move on. They stick around on our news feeds to remind us that they left. Then they reach out to people who had never been their friends because of their “concern” for them. They constantly gossip and bring accusations against the church and its leaders, being sure never to taint their image as a “good” Christian. What better place is there than Facebook for fake Christians to post about their fake lives? It’s perfect. In Matthew 23:28, Jesus says, “You’re like manicured grave plots, grass clipped and the flowers bright, but six feet down it’s all rotting bones and worm-eaten flesh. People look at you and think you’re saints, but beneath the skin you’re total frauds” (The Message, MSG).
Next time you talk to a person who has left their church, remember this: The way they left their last church is the same way they will leave yours. The way they talk about their friends in their last church is the way they will talk about you. Social media is the ultimate tool for Christian gossip.
Here are a few verses from Proverbs to consider:
Proverbs 26:20–28 (MSG)
20 “When you run out of wood, the fire goes out; when the gossip ends, the quarrel dies down.
21 A quarrelsome person in a dispute is like kerosene thrown on a fire.
22 Listening to gossip is like eating cheap candy; do you want junk like that in your belly?
23 Smooth talk from an evil heart is like glaze on cracked pottery.
24 Your enemy shakes hands and greets you like an old friend, all the while conniving against you.
25 When he speaks warmly to you, don’t believe him for a minute; he’s just waiting for the chance to rip you off.
26 No matter how cunningly he conceals his malice, eventually his evil will be exposed in public.
27 Malice backfires; spite boomerangs.
28 Liars hate their victims; flatterers sabotage trust.”
Wow. Rich got this exactly right.
I’ve known people like this, have you?
Social media is a great took that is often used very badly and it’s causing so many problems in people’s lives. There’s a rise in anxiety and depression as people compare themselves with the fake lives of their friends on Facebook. It’s all just a facade as we all try to put our best foot forward.
Remember, kiddies, a wise man once wrote:
Not that we dare to classify or compare ourselves with some of those who are commending themselves. But when they measure themselves by one another and compare themselves with one another, they are without understanding.
Source: 2 Corinthians 10:12 (ESV)
Same goes when you’re in a church or when you leave it.
Don’t listen to it, either — that makes you complicit.
by Doug Giles
Doug Giles, best-selling author of Raising Righteous And Rowdy Girls and Editor-In-Chief of the mega-blog, ClashDaily.com, has just penned a book he guarantees will kick hipster males into the rarefied air of masculinity. That is, if the man-child will put down his frappuccino; shut the hell up and listen and obey everything he instructs them to do in his timely and tornadic tome. Buy Now:The Effeminization Of The American Male
When it’s time to pack up and move on, even Col Davy Crockett knew where his next destination should be.
“A gentleman from Nacogdoches, in Texas, informs us, that, whilst there, he dined in public with Col. Crockett, who had just arrived from Tennessee. The old bear-hunter, on being toasted, made a speech to the Texians, replete with his usual dry humor. He began nearly in this style: “I am told, gentlemen, that, when a stranger, like myself, arrives among you, the first inquiry is – what brought you here? To satisfy your curiosity at once to myself, I will tell you all about it. I was, for some years, a member of congress. In my last canvass, I told the people of my district, that, if they saw fit to re-elect me, I would serve them as faithfully as I had done; but, if not, they might go to h__, and I would go to Texas. I was beaten, gentlemen, and here I am.” The roar of applause was like a thunder-burst.[Louisville Journal.]
That sums up the Texan Spirit beautifully.
And now, you can wear it on a shirt.
Don’t worry, we didn’t forget about the Gents: