Facebook has this way of waning in and out of two poles for me; extreme annoyance and fun voyeurism. Currently I’m leaning towards the extreme annoyance of it all. (Instagram is the answer.) I find myself running to social media for a “friend fix” only to feel like I could really go for some time with an actual friend. In real time and in a real place with real sacrifice made to be there!
I don’t think I’m alone either. I’ve noticed many friends uninstalling the Facebook app from their phone/moving it/burying it in some far away folder. Some friends have even completely given up their smart phones and gone back to a flip phone.
Maybe we are starting to understand that there is no substitute for real in-your-face friendship?
I remember back in 2006 when my husband and I did a tour of an Amish community. The tour guide told us “Amish windows speak”. She said that if the curtains (plain white) are down in front of the windows, it means that family would like privacy. But if the curtains are pulled to the side and tucked or tied back, it means that visitors are welcome.
Isn’t that beautiful?
There is this part of me that is longing to completely ditch technology and embrace a life of only in-my-face/life friends. I feel the tension creep in whenever I see all of the social media outlets that are available to people. They consume time like a starved leech sucking the life from pulsing veins. Then the reminder of friends who are far away in other states and countries pulls me the other direction with a sharp snap.
If you see me on Facebook, you know I don’t hate it so much that I stay away; I’m on there multiple times a day. But my heart has been checked lately by the ways that I’m using it as a crutch for real time with real friends.
There is no substitute for arms to hug, faces to watch rise and fall, smiles and tears on a real human face and not some emoji. I want the curtains in my windows to be pulled back and ready to both receive and to give. I’m challenging myself to take the time that I waste on Facebook and pick up the phone to call a friend-and then to ask them to come hang out with me or to invite myself to come and be wherever they are.
There is no substitute for a life lived in community with others. So stop reading this and go hang out with a real person!