Yeah, who knows what they are saying about you, about your choices, about what was right and what was wrong?
But there it is for all the world to see — the ugly gossip, the mean words intended to assassinate right there on Facebook® in front of God and everybody... an unholy stain for all the world to see.
So what do I do?
Retreat and hide?
Fire back and self-defend?
Hurl my brick through the window of their ugly untruth?
So hand me my brick then maybe I will...
listen and build a bridge of grace to a hurting heart waiting to be loved.
Listen, open your ears, harness your desire to speak, and don't get worked up into a rage so easily, my brothers and sisters. Human anger is a futile exercise that will never produce God’s kind of justice in this world. So walk out on your corrupt liaison with smut and depraved living, and humbly welcome the word of truth that will blossom like the seed of salvation planted in your souls (James 1:19-21 The Voice).
The world's wide — both the real one and the reality of the world wide web.
There are words all over the map. I tell myself that sometimes:
We don't have to be afraid. Listening to other people's words need not undermine the Word.
There are a million beaten paths. And no matter what words people use — everyone is just asking to be loved.
Some speak with a match, words on fire, blazing their path; some speak in circles, words unraveling as they find their way. There are some who lose their voice, too many arrows through the throat, through their words. There are some who take a deep breath of courage and speak their world and get vilified.
There's a guy who writes things and I agree. And then sometimes I don't. Nothing bad happens — maybe only something rare and beautiful. His words settle somewhere inside of me and shape a bit of me to be more like Christ. This can happen —
When we listen to words, not to shoot them down, but to open us up — Grace can walk in.
When we listen to words, but to inform us, they can form us into a cup of understanding. This quenches the world's parched places.
Once, when I saw this guy pick up his phone, I thought it looked like he was holding a brick in his hand. I started to see that everywhere — everywhere people with these bricks in their hands.
And maybe that's a bit of how it turns out to be?
Social media is a brick. Not a brick to throw. But a brick to build a bridge.
Maybe that's it?
Social media is not about competition, ammunition, or opposition.
Social Media is about a conversation. A way to listen and hear and not be afraid.
Maybe, yeah —
Social media isn't ammunition, but an invitation.
It's an invitation to hear people, help people, heal people.
I don't know, so much I don't know — but sometimes I wonder if...
I wonder if —
Though sometimes listening to words beautifully changes our minds, when we humbly see the Truth of the Word in the words...
Sometimes words don't need to change our minds — as much they just need to change our hearts. Change not the way we think — but the way we love.
When grace walks in — that doesn't mean that Truth needs to walk out.
It can mean that they both sit down and listen and learn and linger long enough to love no matter what.
There are times, in the early morning rising, if I sit close enough to the window, I can hear bird songs from up in the pines, songs that I have never heard before.
And there's time to be still long enough to just listen.
Is that what angels say when they make a visitation —
Listen — and do not be afraid?
This is part of a much longer post from Ann Voskamp. That Post is entitled One Brave Way to Heal Our Relationship, Our Hearts, & the Internet.
All pictures from Ann Voskamp.
This article from Ann's incredible blog, A Holy Experience. Ann Voskamp is a beloved author, blogger, Compassion advocate, wife, and mother.
Ann's teaching, writing, speaking, and photography have blessed tens of thousands in many languages and her books are available in multiple languages...
For more on Ann, check out her blog called A Holy Experience and check out her books and other resources.