Monday, January 20, 2014

What I Love About FB

I woke up this morning and started my usual few minutes of silent prayer before I finally dig myself out from under my covers.  I started praising God for the recent wave of support and encouragement that He has showered me with, and suddenly a mental list of my FB friends started scrolling through my head.
   I know people love to be critical of social media and to focus on its negative aspects.  Let's face it, though, this new way of communicating is here to stay.  As a matter of fact, someone on my page said she was taking a FB break the other day, only to realize a day or two later that since most of her kids' schools and other activities communicate with parents via Facebk, she really couldn't unplug.  I, for one, have loved all the new technology and advances in communication for years.  I cannot fathom my first adoption trip to China without having Skype and my laptop to communicate with my hubby and kids back home.  By the time I went to adopt Evie three years later, I only took an ipad and got to Facetme and FB every day, right from my room.  Beyond this, being a military wife has been made infinitely easier by all these changes.  I can keep in touch with family when stationed far away much easier now than ten years ago.  When my hubby is far away I can keep in touch with him too.  Plus, I can keep friendships alive even from a distance.  Friendships that are very real to me - but let's be honest.  When you move every three years, homeschool, and have six kids, it is pretty much impossible to keep in touch with all the people that you are continuously leaving behind. I am always moving away from people I care deeply about, and I love the opportunity to still be involved in their day to day lives on some level.
Most importantly, I have found my FB friends to be a constant source of encouragement for me.  Yes, I still interact with people face to face.  I still go to church, small group, and homeschool co-op.  Yet the people on my FB feed expand my horizons.  I have friends serving the Lord in Haiti, Nicaragua, and Africa.  I have friends that waited, cheered, prayed and cried along with me on either one of my adoptions - and I did the same for them.  I have friends at all different stages of the adoption process, friends that I could not realistically call every day, but whom I can reach with a quick typed word of encouragement or shared celebration.  I have friends navigating the crazy waters of homeschooling along with me, friends who are sending their first kids off to college just like me, friends who give themselves completely to their home and their children, friends who have picked themselves up by their bootstraps and reinvented their lives, pursued new careers, or returned to old ones, friends that buried husbands who were WAY too young, friends that buried children who were WAY too young, and the list goes on.  The point is, I draw inspiration from these people daily.  I have witnessed people going through all kinds of hurdles, overcoming mountains, and coming out on the other side still praising His name.  His power and might are displayed every day when I scroll through my News Feed!

 I  also love it when I log on to FB and see an encouraging Bible verse one friend posted, not knowing it was just what I needed to hear.  Or when someone asks to be backed in prayer, and then shares how that prayer was answered.  Just looking through my list of friends makes me smile because it is a reminder that we have a God that is very much at work still today.  Satan would have us believe that he is winning the fight, but FB actually has served to remind me that there are plenty of people out there still seeking to serve my God - and they are very passionate about it.  I think instead of shaking our heads at what is negative out there, we should use the social media at our fingertips today to make our voices louder and to strengthen each other.  Next time you think of getting "unplugged", plug in to someone on your list that might need an extra word of encouragement or a prayer that day.  I, for one, love the reminder that I am not alone.

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