This year for Christmas I decided to try a little experiment. For forty-eight hours, commencing at 12:01 a.m. on Christmas Eve and ending Christmas night at midnight, I wrote no articles or comments for social media distribution about politics. I decided since we were celebrating the Prince of Peace and his birth, this would be the opportune time to show his example in social media as well. There would be no sarcasm or arguing about political trends and philosophy, only peace on earth and good will toward men.
Now I must confess that I wasn't sure if I would be able to live up to the challenge. After all, as I scoured Facebook and twitter postings, I saw many comments that drew my attention and begged for my response. Being a lifelong and devout Christian and Conservative, I usually answer those comments that I either agree with or object too, but always trying to be kind in the remarks I make. I must confess that I sometimes fail to meet that high standard of comment. However, it is truly hard for me to just pass them by, yet for these two days I successfully did so.
The first eight hours were the toughest, but as time went on I was able to just laugh at the things that bothered me and nod my head in agreement with those views I shared and I kept my focus on short and light-hearted comments, most of them related to the Christmas story and it's message. At the end of the period, I found that I felt more at peace than usual. My sometimes anger at seeing extreme opposing statements and sarcasm was gone and it tells me that approaching social media more as a game with a softer approach might be better for me personally and for all involved. So I have vowed to block out the Lord's Day and any other Christian holidays from political talk and instead devote those days to thoughts about what they are meant for: peace on earth, love of God and the opportunity for salvation through His grace.
Finally, I did learn one other thing that validated what I assumed to be true. People really are consumed with politics and bad news. For every post that is placed that is uplifting and positive, there are probably two that highlight something negative. And it's not that the people who place them are negative. No, quite the contrary, they truly want others to know of their objection to what they've read and I think that is actually quite a positive sign. And associated with where the interest on social media lies, during the two day exercise my reader volume dropped by about 30%. Bad news does get much more attention than good and, unfortunately, most of what we read today in my favorite subject, politics, certainly can't be classified as good.
So I'll go back to regular operating mode today but hopefully with a little softer view and a slightly kinder touch. But then come Sunday, I will try to let my heart project what I know to be true. Only through God and His Son can we truly find the Way, the Truth and the Life.
I hope your Christmas was a very special one, folks, and I hope you will vow to live like it is Christmas every day in your hearts. God bless.