It was mentioned in passing, in a conversation that wasn’t really about this idea, but when Courtney said it at Influence recently, everything came into focus.
Defined as following someone on social media because you feel better about yourself through their posts and pictures, you feel better about your circumstances because of theirs. The moment she said it, I had flashes of people I’m “friends” with on Facebook or follow on Twitter for this exact reason. I’m not a part of their circle because I want good for them, but because I’m entertained by their lives, their misfortunes, their horrible grammar, and bad pictures. It makes me feel better about myself to see their mess. Or sometimes I follow them because they get under my skin and I like to be annoyed and talk to other people about how annoying they are.
Yes, you read that right. I follow people that get under my skin because I like that they annoy me.
The realization that I do this, that I let this stuff into my life shamed me in a powerful way. I was speechless. And so full of disgust. I spend so much time wanting to clear the clutter from our house, my schedule, my relationships and I’m allowing, maybe even searching out, drama and needless distractions.
God showed me the condition of my heart through Courtney in what was a passing comment, but I was struck by the profound truth it held for me.
Maybe you too?
I sat on this thought, this conversation, for a few days. I didn’t talk to God about it, I didn’t share it with anyone, I just let it sit. Partly out of embarrassment, but mostly because I needed time to process. What did this say about me? What struggle did it help me to see clearer? And how can I love others like Jesus when I use others to make myself feel better?
Questions I don’t know the answers to yet.
Truthfully, there’s a lot of sin to walk through. He’s opening my eyes to some ugliness I hadn’t noticed before. (And I thought I was pretty good at noticing the ugly.) I’m still just scratching the surface of it because it’s pretty thick and messy over here. I know that I muted some people on Twitter and unfollowed some Facebook friends, but at this point, I haven’t cut ties completely for a number of reasons. Mostly because I didn’t want this post to connect somewhere in their brains and for them to know why I disappeared. I acknowledge this is a cowardly move, but at this point, I’m not ready or equipped for those conversations. If they come.
When they come.
You know that saying, you don’t know what you don’t know? And when you know, you do better? That’s where I’m at right now. I didn’t even know what my sin was, but now that I do, I’ve got to do better. Have to do better.
What about you?