Wednesday, March 9, 2011

The Temptation of Facebook

“Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the desert to be tempted by the devil.” Matthew 4:1

I’m giving up Facebook for Lent. Facebook is very near and dear to me and I find it very entertaining, but the truth is it has become a habit. I find that when my computer is on, I can’t help but check it a couple of (read: ten) times a day. I read blogs and about Martha Stewart and get all my primary local news from it. I know what’s going on at the schools, libraries, the farmer’s market and even the White House because I like to look at the pictures. Thank goodness I’m not technologically advanced to have Facebook capabilities on my phone because then I would be a crazy, mad woman staring at my phone all day long.

The truth is, Facebook is good for many things, but it really doesn’t help me in a tangible productive way. When I should be cleaning the kitchen or doing laundry, sometimes I’m sitting here at the computer. When I could be reading or working on my writing skills, sometimes I’m stuck in its mind-numbing web. When I should be seeing people face to face, or even calling them on the phone, sometimes I find it more convenient to message them through Facebook.

So anyway, for Lent – the 40 days preceding Easter, symbolizing the temptation of Jesus by Satan – I have decided to give up Facebook. Now, I’ve never truly given anything up for Lent before. Usually I say I’m giving up things like liver, or onions, or liver and onions, because I don’t eat those things anyway, but the true nature of giving up something for Lent is supposed to be somewhat of a sacrifice to emulate the sacrifice Jesus made for us by dying for our sins. I’m pretty sure giving up Facebook doesn’t even scratch the surface on the sacrificial scale, but it was the best I could come up with for me. Other popular items to give up include coffee, sugar (I would croak!), chocolate, cussing, going out to eat, anything near and dear to you, really.

I desperately tried to find someone who was giving up chocolate whom I could strike a trade-off with while I gave up children, but I didn’t have any luck!

Unfortunately, here I am on Day 1 – Ash Wednesday – of Lent, and I’m already thinking I may have to break my Facebook fast! I was planning on meeting one of my friends next week, and I don’t have any of her contact info outside of Facebook. I’m also checking messages and such on email from Facebook because I know there are some people who don’t have my info either. There is a loophole, however, in that Lent does not include Sundays prior to Easter. My DCE Tom pointed that out to me this morning. So, hopefully I’ll be able to keep with the true spirit of Lent without completely falling off the wagon and giving into temptation.

I hope you’ll remember Jesus’ sacrifice during the Lenten season. If you decide to give something up, let me know. I’ll need all the support I can get!

“Then the devil left him, and angels came and attended him.” Matthew 4:11


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