Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Transparency, it is the question...

In this age of social networking and a great deal of "over sharing" I saw a post on Facebook last night by a  friend from high school and it was an honest, simple statement of her struggles that day.  It didn't fall into the woe is me "over sharing" and  full of drama, meant to draw attention category, rather it was just beautifully transparent.  It got my attention.  I didn't roll my eyes and think "why do people put their dirty laundry on FB" like I do so many times, it just made my heart hurt for her.  The difference is, I think she was being transparent, which is so very rare in this day in age (maybe always?)

With constant contact and social networking one might come away feeling that we are more transparent than ever but I doubt that.  Yes, people write things on Facebook, Twitter, etc.  that they would  never verbalize to others, but I think it comes down to what we do post as opposed to what we don't.  We, whether intentionally or not, paint an image of ourselves and our lives by what we do share (and trust me when I say some of us share just a bit more than we need to...if ya know what I mean!)

Our Youth Pastor is leading a study right now that deals with this topic which already had my wheels turning and then this post by a friend last night really got me to thinking about true transparency.  If I am being 100% honest, being transparent is not something I am comfortable with at all.  It is truly something I struggle with (whether online or in person.)  Not that I am the sneaky/untrustworthy not transparent type, rather I keep my heart very closely guarded.

I don't open up to people about my feelings and you will rarely know if I am having a bad day. I carefully cull the photos I share online to make sure they present me in the best light.  I share just what I want, when I want.  So in essence I am painting who I am online.  By not "over sharing" (heavens, forbid!) I have a lot of people who think they know me, and little by little I kind of start believing that is me as well, rather than just a little part of the picture.

That is the catch isn't it?  We paint a picture over a picture and eventually we may forget what God's original was intended to be.  In this age of social media we trick ourselves into thinking we are more open than ever, when really we are just creating a virtual image hoping it will carry over into reality.  It is something to ponder,  isn't it? 

Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts.
Psalm 139:23 (NIV)

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  1. Wonderful thoughts, Bella. Reminds me that the Internet is public. Sitting at home and posting is the same as standing on a street corner and yelling ...

  2. Wonderful thoughts, Bella. Posting on the Internet is public, just like standing on a street corner talking out loud.

  3. It's such a fine line to walk. I try hard to protect myself and I also don't want to burden anyone one else. But as far as my blog, I use that for myself. I think I am very honest on there but I also hold back A LOT for fear of getting a mean reaction.


  4. I love thinking about this. I feel like I am a total open book, unless it's something I feel God has challenged me to deal with quietly, waiting on Him. I hope the picture I paint is as accurate as I think it is...


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