Monday, June 25, 2012

What Would it Look Like?

What would it look like to forgo all social media for a week?


I'm no tech-savvy blogger, but I spend my fair share of time on these interwebs.

What would be the first thing I do upon waking up, if I didn't check my Facebook feed?

What would I do in my downtime besides scroll through my Google Reader?

What if, instead of collecting Pinterest images that simultaneously make me want to workout and eat cupcakes, I did something creative and unscripted with the materials at hand: re-arranging furniture or doctoring a favorite recipe with ingredients in the pantry?

What if, instead of sharing profoundly condensed tidbits on Instagram and Twitter, I actually took time to open up with someone face-to-face?

What if I were to write down every single thought, profound and profane, and share it with God first, instead of flitting my fingers over this keyboard in excitement?

Why do I feel the need to check my e-mail any time I sit down, even when 95% of the time, it's junk mail?

I'm not saying any of these things are inherently bad. In fact, many of them can be wonderful in small ways. But like so many things in this world of flesh, it doesn't take much to distort them.

I've tried this type of fast with varying motivations and varying success over the past few years. Fortunately, Pinterest, Twitter, and Instagram don't have their claws deep in my life. But Facebook? Even scrolling through my news feed twice a day has become a mundane yet compulsive task. Why, at a time when I'm seeking truly honest, genuine friendships, do I still seek to read the surface thoughts of people I haven't seen in years? (Forgive me, this is not meant to sound callous. I am really bad at keeping in touch, and it's great to have a forum to do so. But I would probably cry if my Facebook Timeline ever decided to show me exactly how many hours of my life I've spend in front of Facebook.)

I'm not "quitting" Facebook or anything else, but wouldn't it be nice to hit "pause?" To care a little less about seeing the latest meme making people chuckle or who's engaged/pregnant/graduating with an advanced degree today?

And the Google Reader. Where do I start? Mine has changed so much over the past three years. Even when I started my own blog, I had no idea that a 'blogosphere' existed. I discovered the wonderful world of blogs one night when I was on-call for night shift, and I never looked back. It's led me to so many wonderful interests and, indeed, friendships. But when it comes down to it, I don't need to know everything about the lives of perfect strangers do I? I love reading funny or inspirational posts. I love seeing creativity blossom in people's lives because I only got a small share when God was passing that out.

But I'd be lying if I said I'd never been jealous of another blogger's life: running a marathon, being pregnant, having best friends and a vibrant social life, even maintaining a somewhat predictable schedule for crying out loud, are all things my heart wants or has wanted. But if I don't learn to be satisfied now, I never will be. And haven't I learned by now that things are never what they appear to be? Everybody hurts, right?

I'm looking for the dust to settle in my life, but I'm struggling. And these words stare back at me when I look in the mirror every day:

Even now,” declares the Lord, (that 'even' gets me every time)
    return to me with your whole heart,
    with fasting and weeping and mourning.”
     Rend your heart
    and not your garments.
Return to the Lord your God,
    for he is gracious and compassionate,
slow to anger and abounding in love.
{Joel 2:12-13}

I've been avoiding this fast. The very fast I need to open my heart. I love words (obvs). But these words... these infinite words on the internet. In my head. Clouding my thoughts. Making me anxious. They need to stop. I have some big decisions to make this week and I need to create time and space to listen for God's will. In the stillness God speaks.
The Lord said to Elijah, “Go out and stand on the mountain in the presence of the Lord, for the Lord is about to pass by.” Then a great and powerful wind tore the mountains apart and shattered the rocks before the Lord, but the Lord was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake. After the earthquake came a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire came a gentle whisper. {1 Kings 19:11-12}
Are you listening?

Please e-mail, call, or text me this week! I would love to meet up with you face-to-face. You'll just have to update me the old-fashioned way the next time we hang out.


  1. This morning's (Monday) Magnificat has a nice meditation on Psalm 46: 'Be still and know that I am your God...'
    Check it out.

    1. I will! It's always funny how timing works out like that.

  2. Hi Therese. I don't know when your fast will end so I am not going to notify you by text as I started to do. I would never want to lead you from your fast and if you are anything like me, finding out I had been nominated for something would be a big temptation to just take a small peak! So, I will leave the comment on here and when your fast is up, you will find a nice surprise! I nominated you for the Liebster Blog award. Check out my blog for details around it. You were my number one choice!!

    Love you! I have been praying for you all week!