17Feb

The Facebook Fast: A Social Media Experiment

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Have you ever felt like you are suffering from information overload? That surfing the web, checking facebook, twitter, blogging, and so on is just eating up all your time? Have you ever had the desire to just unplug and focus on real life?

That was exactly how I felt when I decided to embark on a Fastbook Fast. The idea was to make it 30 days without spending time on FB. I made it 20 days. And of course there was the few times I logged on to fix the radio station’s FB account – seeing that I am the “web guru” for the station. That fact made it especially hard to stay off of FB for so long. I did hand off some of the responsibility to our part-time secretary, who this week went on vacation for two weeks. Hence I found it necessary to break my fast due to the fact that we are rolling out some new programming on our station and it requires that I alert the masses. So I felt it was a logical end point for the fast.

While partaking in the fast, I also decided to get back into reading my Bible and a book called One Month to Live: Thirty Days to a No-Regrets Life. I still have ten chapters left to read — the book is meant to be read one chapter at a time for each of the 30 days. I plan to stick to that schedule.

Anyway, I took the time I normally waste on FB and devoted it to the aforementioned tasks and my family.  I was even able to leave my smart phone in another room for hours on end without having to check each and every “buzz” alerting me to a social media transaction.

Fasting in a biblical sense took place when the individual wanted to get closer to God. To abstain from distractions and listen for His still small voice. This FB fast had the same goal in mind. Not long after embarking on the FB fast, I was contacted by the children’s pastor at church. He wanted to recruit me to run the audio\visual aspect of their children’s ministry — of which my daughter attends. Long story short — we had lunch one Sunday afternoon at the church’s restaurant and I agreed to help out.

Second fascinating aspect was the great inner peace I was able to attain. Before the fast I was getting into my old pattern of worrying over finances, mortgage, kids, job, etc. But when I decided to devote more time to getting into God’s word, those worries just seemed to fly out the door. Again I was reminded that God is not going to forsake me and that He thinks thought’s of well-being towards me and not harm.

What this fast taught me was this: we need to get our priorities in this life right. We need to live like this is our last month, day, or moment on earth. We need to focus on the things that matter. Devote our time to people who matter. Invest our time in fulfilling the Great Commission and staying in touch with God more than with friends and family on FB.

God isn’t on FB, not that there is anything wrong with FB, its a great tool but when is the last time you sent a status update to Him? Requested His friendship? Or invited Him to an event? Think about it.

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