“OMG, Hold on, did you see that? I HAVE to post this! #Amaze!”
How many times in a day do you reach for that phone, open up a tablet or laptop, click on your favorite app, and almost absentmindedly share, friend, RT, pin, etc., whatever funny thing in your feed that has made you snicker, or shocked you so much that you just HAD to share?
I have a love/hate relationship with this “thing” that allows us to have instant access to share our opinions about things going on around us. I, myself, was happily posting photos on Instagram of my darling three-year-old daughter at a parade over the Memorial Day weekend, and got just a smidgen – ok boat-loads – of joy as the comments and compliments rolled in from family and friends.
I also get a lot of my news from social media. Last year in fact, when the bombings happened in Boston during the marathon, I think I found out about it first on Facebook, from a friend who happened to be at the race, at least full minute before it came across on CNN.
This toy, this tool, allows us to immediately share and comment on snippets of our lives, our friends’ lives and lives of people we don’t even know, but we feel like we know them because we are all so “connected.”
But are we really connected?
For a short time, dinner with my husband became increasingly quieter as we constantly checked messages, Facebook and Twitter feeds, making sure we didn’t miss anything. After realizing that we were spending more time looking at a tiny screen, rather than the person in front of us, we quickly remedied that habit (not to say we don’t slip up sometimes, but we try to keep it at bay).
My husband and I want to make sure that the example we set for our daughter always is one of true love and respect: one where we value each other, her and others around us much more then re-tweeting the latest inspiring quote from someone we don’t even know.
I saw a powerful short film on YouTube a few weeks ago, titled “Look Up,” in which the narrator challenges viewers to step away from our ever-present technology, even if for just a short while, to embrace what else life has to offer. He goes through several examples of how, while we are technologically becoming more connected, a severe disconnect in our society is growing by leaps and bounds. It moves me every time I watch it.
(Note: the video contains one very mild profanity, but is definitely worth the watch!)
As much fun as it is to share the latest goofy Vine, or post a video of another couple lip-syncing ANOTHER song from “Frozen,” I am reminded and challenged to treasure the gift of life given to me every day from a God who is just waiting to “share” with me His blessings via my family and friends – something I have to remind myself to “favorite” every day.