Thursday, February 6, 2014

Is Facebook Your Counsel?

Some most posts on Facebook really amuse me.  I especially love it when people poll their facebook friends for opinions. "How do you feel about carrying handguns?" "What do you believe about healthcare?" But my all time favorite are the parenting advice polls. 

"My kid is doing _______________." Two sentences of context. Then- bam!- what would you do??" 

Really? Maybe I'm just picky about who I take advice from but you don't know how these people really live! Sure you see their pictures (what they choose to show you, remember?) and hear their stories but you don't see their marriage, how they parents, or what they read. I have a fine set of friends but some of the advice I read on facebook is really ridiculous. I can't imagine that being my channel of counsel. And how do you decide which advice is best? You are going to get some really conflicting ideas. Do you just pick the person you like the best? Or the advice that seems easiest? 

Here's an idea. Instead of polling your facebook friends and getting advice from people with completely different worldviews than what you have why not find yourself a godly mentor? Someone who has walked in the path before you and has kept serving God? (They don't need a title. They just have to be willing to answer a question or two occasionally.)

Wait. You don't have one? You don't know of anybody that could do this? Are you absolutely certain about that? 

What about your pastor's wife? Or your mom? Or your mother-in-law? A godly older lady at church who has grandchildren now probably has some great advice on priorities when raising children.  Do you have a medical question? Ask that nurse or a doctor or a physician's assistant.  Need some homemaking skills? Ask that lady at church who runs a nice home.  Don't wait to find someone who "has it all" before you ask for advice. Ask people about their strengths if you need help in those areas. 

Sometimes the problem isn't that there's not anyone to ask.  The problem is that we don't want to ask. "Because we have it handled. We don't need help. We know what we are doing. Please don't insult us by pretending we don't have it together." That's pride. Pride will keep you from growing if it can keep you from asking.  I want to come right out and say, I don't have it together. I need help. I need advice and counsel. If you can beat down that pride you have a fighting chance at learning something. 

I jokingly told Justin I was going to poll my facebook friends about a parenting issue and he laughed and said, "Go for it; that should be really funny." And I think that's all it would have been- a source of humor. I want to picky about who I take advice from. I want to be consistent with my life and that's easier with consistent advice. 

Now I realize that sometimes there's really not someone to give godly counsel. Then I would suggest books. I have received life-changing techniques and suggestions from books. There's so much wisdom out there if we just tap into it.

But it's probably not on Facebook. Give that a rest and post pictures of your dog, ok? 

photo courtesy of pixomar/

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