Facebook – Stay or Leave?

           I joined Facebook primarily to see photos and news about my family and grandchildren. Since I joined, my son and daughter left Facebook and I’m asking myself, “Do I stay or leave?”

            I’m considering leaving for a variety of reasons. Unfortunately, I wasted precious writing time falling down the rabbit hole of posts and compulsively checking my phone, which seemed glued to my hand. God patiently showed me that social media had become more important than spending time in the Word and with God. Ouch! It was time to turn around                                                                      

            Last May, I wrote, “Seven Gifts From My Facebook Fast.” I discovered the answer to weaning myself from Facebook is the wonderful Google Chrome Extension called Newsfeed Eradicator for Facebook. My time management improved after I discovered that sweet extension. Now, I seldom see posts from other people when I’m focused on writing and I accomplish much more during my day.

          I am more determined to say goodbye to Facebook after I reviewed this Podcast, What the 2021 Facebook Changes Mean for Authors. The host, Thomas Umstattd Jr, says, “Author pages and the groups feature inside of Facebook will be overhauled and groups will move to a lower priority.” Umstaddt also adds, “Google will soon ask for your permission to track you.” My introvert self says, “Woot! It’s about time.” Of course, Facebook is not happy about that announcement, and the war between the two monolithic tech giants goes on.

            How will I respond as an author? I’m uncertain, but I suspect I will focus more on my website and mailing list. If you follow me on Facebook, visit the website and sign up for my mailing list if you haven’t previously.

            I pray the pandemic is easing and the light at the end of the tunnel is no longer an oncoming train. Of course, I still offer spiritual direction via Zoom because vaccinations will take time and we are not in the clear. I may add small group meetings or a podcast. (Ack! Did I just say podcast?) Stay tuned.

          I spend more time in Bible study and covenant groups today. I meet with a small group of Christian women which started in Advent and still meets twice a month. Our group follows (um, how shall I say?) a more inclusive view of what it means to be a Christian. We read Scripture, various articles, and discuss news stories. We ask God how we can repair the damage done, supposedly in the name of Jesus.

            Like many of you, it appalled us to see our nation’s capital ravaged by people holding signs saying, “Jesus Saves.” We ask, “How do we re-present Christ to a hurting world? How do we offer compassion for people who have lost so much to COVID-19, unemployment, and racial assault and discrimination?” We grieve the scourge of white supremacy and support each other in our struggle to comprehend the incomprehensible. Our conversations, although deep, are also fun and light-hearted. I love meeting via Zoom with Christian women who re-present Christ in our world today. We commit to repairing whatever damage we can in our own circles and communities infected by conspiracy theories and misguided loyalty to nationalistic Christianity.

            Bible Study, Online Spiritual Direction, and the small groups on Zoom bring life to my soul and spirit. I can’t say the same is true for Facebook. I’m in discernment whether to stay or leave, and grateful that God will light my path toward a decision. Whatever I decide, you will be the first to know.

            I appreciate your comments and input.

Thank you for reading.

Blessings!

Cindy

Photo by Jens Lelie on Unsplash

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