Farewell Facebook

I have 419 friends.

As a young man who grew up for years having no friends, this is an astonishing number of people who claim to know me and desire to continue to know me.

Of course I’m talking about my Facebook friends. Facebook has been great in helping me network and keep in touch with many people’s lives throughout the past several years. That said, it has created a serious problem:

Noise.

I desire inspiration and engagement. Neither of these I find in Facebook anymore. Most of the statuses I read are either gossip, complaints or events and games. Regardless of the merit of any of these status (I’m not judging any of the status, especially since I’ve been guilty of all of them), since I don’t care about them they have become deafening white noise in my life. I realized as well when I check Facebook for updates in my friends’ lives how often I get frustrated or righteously offended at what they are saying. All of this said, Facebook has not been drawing me closer to Jesus and stirring thoughts about the Lord in my heart that I can meditate on.

The point that took me a while to see is that anything that doesn’t do this is not worth my time. God values my time and He demands that I do as well.

There are many people who do find value in Facebook (like I used to) and I am not stating anything in judgment of them. I only know the prompting in my heart that I have regarding this issue.

That all said, leaving Facebook is one of the scariest things I’ve done in a while. As a information junkie, marketer, tech-lover and social media enthusiast, Facebook has become my central portal for almost everything – email, photo albums, updates, event information, etc. I have seriously challenged myself to find alternate ways for all these needs/wants to be replaced by other good programs and websites.

Here is a list of what I am doing and how you can keep in touch with me:

  1. My Twitter account (@eyesandwings)
    I LOVE Twitter. The ability to allow people to follow you without following them yourself has allowed me to curate status that inspire and stir me to righteousness. I have become far closer to people on Twitter than I have on Facebook, mostly due to being likeminded in our focus on Christ. Right now as I’m writing this post we’re discussing the need of the Sabbath. It’s a 140 character (at a time) discussion that’s drawing my heart closer to Jesus and the Word.
    I post my daily thoughts, ideas, humor all on my Twitter account. I am FAR more honest on it than I ever was on Facebook, mostly because few people on it are easily offended. I’ve spent years of building a group of friends on Twitter that are truly likeminded.
  2. My WordPress Blog (manchesterfamily.wordpress.com)
    I will be continuing writing long form thoughts on my blog. If I can present a thought/argument in a few tweets then I normally use Twitter but if it requires a longer and deeper study, it gets written on my blog.
  3. My Flickr account (eyesandwingsdeland)
    If you want to see pictures of my wife and I and our travels, you can now view our sets on Flickr. I broke down and purchased a Pro account so that every picture that I would want to upload and organize now can be. This is also a huge help to friends and family who would love copies of these pictures, since they are easily downloadable in high quality. It also allows me to easily post pictures to my blog, something Facebook has never helped with.
  4. My personal email (eyesandwings@gmail.com)
    The biggest question I’ve been asked is “How will I be able to send you a email if you’re not on Facebook?” The answer: send it to my normal email I’ve had for years.
  5. My Google Talk messenger (eyesandwings@gmail.com)
    While I am at work, this is a great way to quickly get a hold of me. Most of the marketing team uses this now to talk back and forth throughout the day.

Well that’s it. I plan on shutting down my Facebook account by the end of this week. I will miss all my Facebook friends but I’m really excited about reducing the noise in my life. It’s time to curate what comes into my life.

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Car Washes & Conferences

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My car is dirty. I mean really dirty. I mean stinky, rotting and nasty dirty. I decided today that I want my car clean. Now cleaning my car is usually a 3+ hour job and I was feeling lazy today so I decided to pay $15 at a car wash to get it washed and vacuumed. The problem is that these car cleaning places don’t do as good as a job in 15 minutes that I can do in 3+ hours but today I decided to just deal with it.

My soul/heart is also dirty. I mean really dirty. I mean stinky, rotting nasty dirty. Usually the way the Lord cleans my heart is by long periods of refining me in the fire and long periods under the spotlight of His Word. These things bring lasting change, cleaning and joy.

But sometimes I get lazy.

Sometimes I think I can just go somewhere, like a conference, for a few days and get a quick cleaning. I fool myself into believing that it is good enough. I know it probably isn’t doing anything deep or transforming, but it makes me feel better about myself.

It makes me “feel better about myself”.

Ouch.

Now I love and enjoy conferences. I love taking a few days and focusing on one subject. It’s a great way to teach an train a larger group of people. I love special times of gathering together to get refreshed and to corporately worship God. The problem arises when we replace our day by day, longterm cleanings from God with conferences – living a life of hype, allowing our “cars” (lives) to get dirty, waiting until everyone complains about the dirt in our lives before we go somewhere quick and cheap to take care of it. This is not the victorious Christian life that Jesus died for!

The process of daily washing our hearts/souls before God is long hard work but it is important that we do it. God cares very much about the investment/deposit of His Spirit that He’s put inside us. It’s time that we do too. Let’s stop allowing others to do the cleaning for us.