Thursday, March 3, 2011

… in the Integrity of My Heart

Psalm 34 has been speaking to my heart …

            1      I will bless the LORD at all times;
                     His praise shall continually be in my mouth.
            2      My soul will make its boast in the LORD;
                     The humble will hear it and rejoice.
            3      O magnify the LORD with me,
                     And let us exalt His name together. (1)

All this contemplation of the impact social media has on ministry has my heart longing for the simplicity of the message of Jesus. I’m a little surprised that even today my thoughts and feelings are swirling within me, thinking about some of the words and images I’d seen during my research.

In my quest to find value in the use of social media for ministry purposes, I was alarmed by some of the material I came across. Not so much from anonymous sources or people unknown to me, but from individuals who not only attend our church, but are in some form of leadership.

I dare not post specific examples, but let me just say it pains me to see women who lead other women posting sexually charged content and innuendo on their Facebook pages. Or posts intended to direct us to Christ scream “Look what great things I do for Him!” and even as I write this knowing I am sometimes guilty of similar offenses – being too much ‘friends with the world’ and blurring the line between confidence and pride to name a few – I wonder at posting this at all.

But as I spoke with my dear friend today, I realized that feeding sheep means helping to keep their food source clean. Making sure they aren’t chewing brambles and thorns with their tender grass, and leading them to cool streams of water when they would rather lay down and sleep or are too scared to find their way alone.

My friend encouraged me to speak up. And I know that’s a right thing. So as I read Psalm 34 I thought “That’s right. Bless the Lord at all times…boast in the Lord.” I guess the conclusion I’ve come to is this: I feel at peace about using Facebook, Twitter, and blogs to ‘boast in the Lord.’ As a equipping member of the body of Christ, I have a responsibility to reach others with the Word, and these outlets help me walk in my Ephesians 2:10 work. The bottom line for me is this: whatever medium I use, I must use it with integrity, I must keep my message pure and in line with the Scriptures, and I must always seek to point others to Christ first and always. I choose to use social media to magnify the Lord and exalt His name. What others do with their resources is up to them … I don’t have to friend, follow or retweet any ungodly thing. I can also keep in mind these verses from Psalm 101:

                    I will walk within my house in the integrity of my heart.
                I will set no worthless thing before my eyes…

       My eyes shall be upon the faithful of the land, that they may  dwell with me;
      He who walks in a blameless way is the one who will minister to me.

For consideration from Psalm 101:

    • It is often easy in the privacy of our own homes to live differently than we live in front of our church family. What are three ways you can walk in the integrity (this word is also often also translated ‘blamelessness’) of your heart at home?
    • What does the psalmist mean when he says ‘My eyes shall be upon the faithful of the land …’ Who might these people be in your life? Can you think of any people who walk in the blameless way (with integrity) that minister to your heart? Take a moment to ask God to reveal to you who that might be and thank Him for them. Then consider giving them a call, or dropping them a note to tell them how much they mean to you. You won’t be sorry you did!

Praising God for all of you!

Blessings, Tina

(1) New American Standard Bible : 1995 update. 1995 (Ps 34:1–3). LaHabra, CA: The Lockman Foundation.

(2) New American Standard Bible : 1995 update. 1995 (Ps 101:2–6). LaHabra, CA: The Lockman Foundation.

1 comment:

  1. Really good thoughts and reminders Tina. We bloggers & Facebook users who know and love the Lord to need always use the Holy Spirit's guidance before we post...