Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Why I don't use Facebook (or this blog) for political and religious debates

I like my daily interactions on Facebook because, for the most part, they're fun. I enjoy them.

What I'm not so much into on Facebook are arguments over politics and religion, insulting elected officials (whoever they may be and whatever party they may represent), and just generally adding to the unpleasantness of the world.

So I tend to keep Facebook light. And Twitter, too, for that matter. Occasionally I'll express an opinion, because I do have them. But mostly, I'm not looking for anything much deeper than jokes and here's-what's-happening-in-my-life updates from friends on social media.

That said, I have no problem if you ARE someone who wants to argue online. That's totally your right, and I don't think there's anything wrong with it. It's just not something for me.

That's OK, right? We can agree to use these social platforms for different reasons. Just because I don't use them the same way as you doesn't mean that:

(A) I'm not passionate or serious
(B) I'm unable to take sides on major issues
(C) I'm embarrassed about my opinions or my faith

That last point bears some elaboration. I am a Christian. I attend church virtually every week not because I'm any better than you, but for the same reason that a sick person goes to the doctor. I need to be there. So far this year I've managed to read the Bible every day. I feel like I'm much better off for having done so, but I'm a heck of a long way from perfect.

I am not ashamed to say that I follow Jesus Christ. And that I believe him  to have been (or more accurately to be, present tense) the Son of God. And that I believe him when he says that he is the way, the truth and the life.

As a Christian, I am called upon to spread the Gospel message, and I try to do that in private interactions. In conversations I have with friends and family. In the way I act. I don't always live up to the standard I should, but I do try.

I choose not to use Facebook as the stage from which I preach. I use it for fun and jokes, and occasionally to lament the sad fact that I am a Cleveland Browns fan.

If Facebook is your religious or political stage, again, that's cool. More power to you. But it's not mine. And while I tend to care way too much about what others think of me, I'm fine if you don't agree with my philosophy. I hope you do, but it's OK if you don't.

Maybe I'm wrong about this, at least from the standpoint of faith. Maybe I'm wasting an opportunity to "let my light shine" by not expressing myself on certain matters via social media. I don't know. But if I am, I definitely know one thing:

It's entirely Obama's fault.