"Share if you love Jesus, keep scrolling if you don't"
"This person just had something terrible happen, share if you care"
"My prayers were answered, and yours will be too if you share this picture"
Y'all. Jesus is not a Facebook post. You are not going to hell if you don't share every faith-related or heartstrings-tugging meme that appears on Facebook. This is not how we spread the gospel. This is social media bullying.
Recently, I had a sweet friend who was deeply hurt by someone who misinterpreted her post on social media. My friend admits that she probably posted before thinking it through. However, the "friend's" reaction was also blown entirely out of proportion, to the point that my friend is not even sure she can continue to worship at the same church as this person.
Cyber-bullying has garnered a lot of attention amongst the pre-teen and teen age groups, sadly because it has resulted in serious consequences-including several suicides of those young people that were the victims of the bullying.
When I think of this type of toxic conversation, I am reminded of Psalm 4:4.
"Be angry about sin, but don't let yourself be driven to sin by anger"
-Andrew Hopper (paraphrased)
In Psalm 4:4, David was facing an angry population. It's not clear exactly who was persecuting and slandering him or what it was even about, but it was certainly sinful on the part of his enemies. But David does not lash out in kind. He does not return slander for slander, insult for insult. Instead, He directs them to be silent and think over their response as well as to "Offer the sacrifices of righteousness and put your trust in the Lord" -Psalm 4:5
Over and over throughout the Psalms, David turns back to God's word. And this is the example God wanted him to set for His people, including us. David knew he was sinful, an adulterer and a murderer. But He also knew that God alone has the authority to judge.
Sweet sisters, please think before you post. "Meditate within yourself on your bed" as David instructs in Psalm 4:4. Consider that your words may do more harm than good. Ask yourself, is what I am about to say edifying or destructive? (And remember that sarcasm-which happens to be one of my spiritual gifts-does not always translate on social media).
And please, please, please stop with the "share this picture or burn in hell" crap. Just sayin'.