What is the first thing you do when you wake up in the morning? Check your Twitter? Read your emails? Inspect your missed texts? Examine your Facebook notifications? It seems numerous people wake up to quickly see what they missed while they were sleeping after they have done a final runthrough of social media on their phones right before they turned in for the night.
I am not anti-social media or internet. It has its place, its positives, and its perks. Unfortunately, it also has its pitfalls, its perils, and its problems.
One of those problems is the faux bravery it provides. Some college athletes have been targeted by opinionated Twitter users and have found themselves involved in unnecessary drama with someone who is tucked safely behind their screens. People can openly share their opinions regarding the skill level, personality, or even the wardrobe, of others. We must guard against being impacted by words of someone who does not know us or the whole story.
The internet can also dominate our time. Have you experienced a time when you intended to do “a quick check of Twitter” and it turned into hours of mindless internet surfing? There is nothing wrong with surfing the internet or posting updates, but when it is what our day is built around, it becomes a problem. When we are endlessly favoriting, commenting, snap chatting, googling, and tweeting instead of carrying on conversations face-to-face or engaging in real-life activities, we have made a choice to allow it to control us. If God looked at an hour-by-hour schedule of what you did yesterday, where would He think your priorities are? There are two steps we can take to avoid the potential drawbacks of the internet.
First, be diligent in identifying who you are in God’s eyes. God sees you as the “apple of His eye.” What people say to you or about you on a screen does not change what your Heavenly Father says about you. He created you on purpose, for a purpose, and granted you gifts that will help you live out His plan for your life. Also, start your day by saturating yourself in God’s Word instead of technology. Imagine the change in our perspective if we would begin our day with reminders of His unfailing love instead of reminders from our online calendar.
As you go through your day looking for ways to glorify Him, include your use of the internet. Put Him first!
Teach us to number our days that we may gain a heart of wisdom. (Psalm 90:12)
Keep me as the apple of your eye; hide me in the shadow of your wings. (Psalm 17:8)
Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise. (Ephesians 5:15)
Dear Lord, help me to use my time wisely; to take part in activities that will help me to be a better person, student, and athlete. And help me to only rely on what You say about me, Lord. I ask for Your wisdom. In Your holy name I pray, Amen.