Posted by: Brad Stanford | June 29, 2015

New Thoughts

New things are happening.

It’s hard to explain everything given the limits of both time and words. Suffice it to say that walking with God is a roller coaster when you don’t know what He’s up to. But when he explains, peace arrives. The circumstances may not change, but they suddenly don’t matter anymore because everything makes sense.

While I would love to share everything that is going on with us, that’s actually an old thought. After participating in the social experiment of worldwide social interaction over the last ten years, I’ve decided that we’re not really ready for that. Thankfully for the rest of you, I don’t have the authority to apply that conclusion to everyone. But I have not noticed an increase in peace related to social interaction. I have noticed an increase in hyperbole, worry, manipulation, and arguing.

Now, sure, as with all innovations, there have been great uses of social media. Don’t get me wrong – I’m not as dumb as I look. Lives have been saved, old friends have connected, the lost have been found…and on and on. But it seems those are peaks that spot the landscape that’s made up of misunderstandings, poor communication skills, and knee-jerk offense-taking.

Yes, the irony of using social media to say these things is not lost on me. But then again, I don’t have a large audience. I do appreciate both of you, but my media is not all that social. This is more of a contribution to the connected subconsciousness that is the real social connection. By saying these things out loud, it pulls the world in a direction, if even on a micro scale. I would think that saying these same words outside to no one in particular would have the same effect. In this case, my kids might have a chance of seeing my words sometime in the future.

So my newest thought is this: use more energy to show than tell. Telling the stories of our lives needs to happen for sure, but our ancestors had it right: tell those stories face to face around the fire at the end of the day. Be entertained not by fantasy, but by reality. By doing great work during the day, you will have great stories to discuss at night.

And remember: not everyone needs to hear your story. Or my story. In fact, few really need to know what’s going on in my life, and those few are actually in my life on a semi-daily basis.

I am certainly not against social media. I’m just a fan of moderation. It’s as if bubble wrap was invented ten years ago, and people having been popping it all day every day ever since. It’s time for something more self-controlled.

I suggest being slower to speak, slower to get angry, and quicker to give thanks.

Time is short. Let’s do amazing things instead of talking about the horrible things being done.

Who’s in?



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