• --j

3 ways Social Media destroyed MENTORSHIP without us noticing

Facebook gave us a "connection without relationship."

Have you ever facebook stalked someone to find out something about them before you meet in person? or sent quick superficial messages to friends instead of picking up the phone and talking for a bit?

The world seems to get busier every year. The only way to keep up with our friends (and acquaintances) lives is to watch from afar. We are disconnected and uninvolved, but we are catching the high points, right? All of this gives us a sense of connection without the emotional investment and dedication required to be fully "involved" in that person's life.

How can we remedy this?

If your friend lives far away, reach out with a phone call. If they are near, invite them for coffee or dinner, set your phones aside, and look each other in the eye. It could rekindle something extraordinary, namely a true friendship.

Instagram gave us "perception without reality."

Instagram is great. It gives us a little bit of beauty and adventure in our sometimes boring and mundane lives…or does it?

Deep down, we all know that the pictures that we see on Instagram are carefully curated to show a specific image. They are meant to convince others that the poster's life is amazing and full of crazy shenanigans, beautiful landscapes, and perfect families/relationships.

But sometimes life is hard. Sometimes our sunset is dreary and dull. Sometimes the reality of our life and job is driving us to depression and anxiety. Sometimes our marriage has fallen apart, or we are lonely and confused. Perception is often a lie. What we need is a dose of reality.

It's okay to admit you are struggling when Jesus promised he would never leave you.

It's okay to feel lonely and confused when He gave us the church to guide us and provide support in our darkest hours.

It's alright to admit you are bored with your life, maybe someone will help you dive into the exciting world that God has for you, full of boundless revelations and mysteries found in his word.

How can we remedy this?

Transparency, talk to people about your struggles, and give them a dose of your reality. See if they have any good counsel, or if they have passed through any similar trials.

Chances are you might find someone to walk through this hardship with you. Difficult paths always seem shorter when you are walking with someone.

Twitter gave us "wisdom without substance."

Twitter was intended to provide the ordinary joe a venue to share his personal thoughts and insights in 140 (now 240) character quips.

But we have become a people obsessed with "gotcha" moments. We love catching someone saying something incriminating or hypocritical. It makes us feel better about ourselves.

The only thing we love more than a "gotcha moment" is a burn or super-witty comeback. (which is what twitter specializes in!)

Instead of following Paul's command to avoiding petty arguments and controversies, we dive right in and watch the troll fest.

People try to put their best foot forward with catchy tweets, but how much true wisdom can we get out of 240 characters? We read enough to satisfy our initial curiosity, but we rarely delve deeply into the substance of the topic or argument.

How can we remedy this?

Read a book together with some friends and discuss the contents and what it might mean.

Choose a topic that you would like to know more about and spend some of your time and energy going deep. Study God's word, Theology, Philosophy, or human behavior. Whatever you choose, go deep and share your journey with someone.

Finally, I want to be clear that I'm not telling you that these tools are wicked or that you should delete your accounts.

Instead, be intentional about your relationships, seek out depth and devote yourself to mentorship. You may find that these tools can even be used to enhance your mentorship journey if used with careful intentionality.

If you would like to learn more about mentorship and how you can take your relationships to the next level, check out my book "Letters to an Apprentice" coming out in April 2020.

#discipleship #christiandevelopment #character #mentorship

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