“Is There No Shame?”

By Wesley Walker

Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, Formspring, and other sites of the like have opened us up to a new level of openness.  Teens, young adults, parents, grandparents, and sometimes even animals (yes, I am friends with at least one dog on Facebook) share all sorts of details about themselves.

This can be a great tool.  You are able to quickly see when someone is hurting.  You are able to rejoice when something great happens.  You are able to spread the message of Christ with a single click.  For these reasons, I believe the social media needs to be used by Christians and churches to the glory of God.

However, there is another aspect of social media that is troubling.  It seems with our new open society we have lost the idea of shame.  Shame is a good thing.  If we do not feel shame then we have seared our conscience.

Spend a few minutes on Facebook and you begin to see that the idea of shame is leaving us.  Pictures, comments, discussions, groups, and “likes” show people have no problem broadcasting their sinful escapades and thoughts.  As the prophet Jeremiah says, “Were they ashamed when they committed sin, NO!  Nor did they know how to blush” (Jeremiah 6:15; 8:12).

Let me give you a few reasons why we need to reintroduce shame to the social media world:

1.  Your Online footprint is search-able.  Once you post something it stays with you and people find it.  Employers can now look at your “online” life to determine if you are the type of person they want to hire.  Reputations can be destroyed with the click of the mouse, or a “send” from a cell phone.

2.  Your Online life reflects on more than yourself.  For most Christians, their Facebook profile also lists their religious affiliation (not a fan of the word but couldn’t think of a better one).    Usually the interests will say, “I love God” or “I just want to please my Savior.”  That in itself is great.  However, how much harm is done to the name of God when what we post includes things not in line with His holiness.

3.  God is technologically savvy.  I think sometimes we forget that God can see what you are doing online.  Just like a parent, preacher, elder, deacon, or youth minister might see what you post (and even correct you).  God does as well.  And even if no one else catches it, God is not hindered by online filters.  Scripture says we will be judged by every idle (careless) word (Matthew 12:36-37).  The same is true for every sinful tweet, status update, or picture.

~~via bulletin of the Park Avenue church of Christ, Charleston, WV


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