11/24/10

Social Media and Prayer

One of my friends, Bill McKeever, ruined a perfectly good breakfast meeting (with our spouses) at Coco's this week when he quoted Pastor John Piper: "One of the greatest uses of Twitter and Facebook will be to prove at the Last Day that prayerlessness was not from lack of time."

Groan. Deep thought. I couldn't let go of that quotation all day long!

Although I don't live on Facebook, I do post several times a day. I catch up with close family members' activities, and try to minister to others through humor, insights, special links, and thought-provoking quotations. But Bill's comment made me evaluate (no, compare) the amount of time I spend in each activity, social media and prayer.

We really have no excuse not to carve out time for prayer, do we? We have so many time- and labor-saving appliances, but what do we do with all the time we save?

The truth is, we will give account to God for how we spend our time.
Sometimes we foolishly waste or squander time; but the Psalmist's earnest prayer was, "Teach us to use wisely all the time we have" (Psalm 90:12). Wisely.

Time is a treasure, and time lost is never to be regained.
We do need time to relax, and for me, it is as relaxing to chat with friends on Facebook as to lie in a hammock in the sun. One activity relaxes my emotions and relieves stress; the other relaxes my body. It's not the activity that is in question, but rather, the amount of time we spend.

I have to ask, "Is the time I spend on Facebook and Twitter in balance with the rest of my life? I think it is, but I can sure see how this simple pastime could sap up hours of my life. Like any good thing, it has to be kept in check. I have to discipline my life to guard my heart and time.

God is the sovereign ruler over time. He lives in eternity and does not measure it the way we do. One day is as a thousand years in His perspective (2 Peter 3:8). But we are temporal and finite (Psalm 39:4-5); we spend time at a set pace of 60 seconds every minute and 24 hours every day.

The wonderful truth about the stewardship of time is that we can actually multiply the influence and effectiveness of our lives through the wise use of every minute. Time is a precious resource, and we have a choice how we will use it.

When I consider time, I think about two things. How can I glorify God with my time, and how can I enjoy God, people, and the calling of God in my life? A little Facebook time will never be a problem as long as I keep God's perspective and priorities in mind. In His economy, there is time for every activity He wants me to do, but I must be careful and wise, understanding His will (Ephesians 5:15-17; Ecclesiastes 3:1-8).

What about you? Do you struggle with the time spent with social media? Does something else drain your time and rob you of opportunities? What do you do to protect your priorities and your valuable time?

2 comments:

Marja said...

Great post Dawn... worth thinking about! I purposely post only once a week on my blog and once a day on FB, and I read all other blogs I follow once a week. I do this so as not to spend too much time reading blogs and FB and other social media. I do see the value of social media, but as you write, we have to be considerate about the amount of time we spend there! I simply cannot find the time to read new posts everyday, so I have put myself on a 'media diet'!

lolwithgod.com said...

Right, Marja. It's hard to find balance sometimes. I try to minister through daily posts, an every-other-day blog, and a weekly blog ... so I'm on a lot. But I try to plan for specific times, and make sure I get other priorities done first!