Fasting from Facebook for Lent 2015
I made a decision to fast from Facebook for Lent. The reason is because I was spending too much time reading other’s people’s posts and not spending enough time reading God’s posts. I also felt that since the church I pastor was going to be in revival in August (Sam Moore will be the evangelist and the Mackey Willis Family will be the musical guests), I wanted to pray for that as well as get personally prepared.
So I am “Logging Off For Lent.” This is nothing new. Many people have been turning off social media to focus on what God wanted them to do for a couple of years now. I will still post reflections, sermons, book and movie reviews to Facebook via my website. I just won’t be reading people’s posts. As I said in my Facebook post yesterday, it’s not that I don’t “like” people. It’s just that I want to focus more on my prayer life, reading and writing.
That’s the point of fasting. You don’t do it to get attention. You deny yourself something for a season to replace it with focus on God. The bad thing about social media is that when you say that you are “logging off for Lent,” you just created attention for yourself. In one way, that defeats the purpose of fasting. You are not supposed to do that to attract attention to yourself. You do it to focus your attention on God. You hope that other people will recognize the point of your piety and let you go for a while.
For this experiment, I have not only logged off from Facebook, I also deleted the apps on my iPhone and iPad. So I am preventing the temptation of even seeing Facebook. The irony here is that you will read this post and possibly like it and comment on it. Yet I won’t know about it until after Easter.
I think that brings out another point about fasting. If I were to look on Facebook, I would possibly “get my reward” as Jesus says by seeing the amount of attention I am getting from this act of piety. I think that is Jesus’ point about any act of surrender to Him. Jesus didn’t like the Pharisees parading around with ashes on their heads so that they could draw satisfaction from the attention of the people. Instead, Jesus wanted us to know that we should get our satisfaction from focusing on God, and not ourselves.
In this case, I am not really looking forward to a “secret” reward from God. I am not doing this for that reason. I have just come to the point in my life that I need to focus more on God for a season. I am not Catholic, but I see the value in the rhythm of the church year. I understand that Lent, when properly used, can help a Christian grow. That’s the point of all this for me. I don’t think I am better than you. I just know that I need to grow, especially in the area of prayer and fasting.
So, I am “logging off for Lent.” I will come back to Facebook on Easter Sunday. On the Monday after Easter, I will post the results of this fast to see what I have learned. In the meantime, I love you all and remember that God loves you too.
#FacebookFast, #Lent, #AshWednesday, #40Days