One of the things I like most about living in the Midwest is the change in seasons. Every several months there is a change in the weather that allows us the opportunity to enjoy something new. Enjoy the change in weather. Enjoy the clothes we pull out of our closets we forgot about. Enjoy celebrating and decorating for new holidays.
And, once again, another seasonal change is upon us. Valentines Day is this week. Believe it or not, Ash Wednesday is this week. I usually do not do a lot for Valentines Day, but the boys and I started to get into the spirit of decorating with hearts today. I cut, they decorated, we hung them in our doorways. It is amazing how little paper hearts with scribbles can make your day a little brighter.
As the season of Lent approaches, I’m once again faced with whether or not I want to give something up. “Giving something up” is not a required thing for us Lutherans. Still, I have tried to give something up the last couple years with a more specific purpose. I do not want giving something up for Lent to be a personal goal. I want it to be something that helps me grow in my faith and provides me an opportunity to realign my priorities to strengthen my relationship with God.
So my decision this year is to give up Facebook. I did this a couple years ago and found it to be a very healthy thing. As a stay-at-home Mom, one of the things that I often miss most is social interaction. I love my kids, but sometimes I crave to talk to someone who is over the age of four in my day. Facebook is an easy way to see what other adults are doing and interact. That’s not a bad thing. But let’s face it. It can also be a huge time sucker that doesn’t always leave us feeling great about our lives when we’re done. Here are a few signs for me that it is time to take a little break from Facebook:
- I make excuses to come into the kitchen and refresh my Facebook page.
- I am making unfair judgements about other people after reading a post they made or looking at a picture they post. (There is no way to know what is going on in someone’s life based on one picture. It is too easy to make snap judgements based on a Post that could be incorrect).
- The time I spend “checking in” on Facebook is taking me away from time I need to be spending with God, my family, and my in-person life.
- I judge my self-worth by how many “Likes” a picture or post gets.
So, for the season of Lent, you will not find me on Facebook. I do manage several group Pages that I will allow myself to respond to the needs of in a limited manner. If I get an email through Facebook about it, I’ll still try to find a way to respond in a timely manner.
Where can you find me? I’ll still be on the blog. I’ll still have my email. I’ll still be reachable by phone or in person. I’m looking forward to actually keeping contact with people in those ways again instead of my reliance on Facebook.
Are you giving up anything for Lent? I’d love to hear what you are doing. Or if you ever have given up Facebook – was it as painful as you thought it would be? Last time I did this, I thought I’d be amazingly difficult but I was surprised how little I ended up missing it.