The Only “Like” That Really Matters
Recently, I read a Washington Post article that talked about NBA players and their social media habits. While many team members used to talk in the locker room throughout game-nights, they now are often caught checking their Twitter comments and Facebook likes. Team coaches who used to ban smartphones altogether in the locker rooms, now only hand out small financial fines—something that hardly deters these multi-millionaire-dollar athletes. Sadly, it seems like the concept of ‘team” has been replaced with selfies or “likes.”
NBA players aren’t the only ones feeling the need to be “liked” on social media. We too can get caught up in our posts about that amazing sushi dinner or the photos of our adorable grandkids or that incredible beach vacation. We want the validation, right? When someone likes our post, they’re saying, “Your pictorial life is worth looking at.” If we are lucky, we may get a comment.
A woman recently made the news after she almost lost her arm attempting a selfie at the Arizona zoo in front of the cage of a big, black jaguar. She crossed over a low concrete barrier and stood in front of the wired cage, at which point the bad kitty clamped down on her arm like a vice grip. She is lucky to still have her arm.
What in the world possessed that woman to do that? What was she thinking—or not thinking?
It’s caused me to take a hard look at why I feel the need to post cool location selfies or have my followers “like” my posts. Our social media outlets are good ways to stay in touch with out-of-state relatives and friends. But do I, along with society, have an increased and deep-seated approval insecurity? Even as Christians, we can lose a little perspective and count too much on the approval of others.
While pondering these two stories, I felt a nudge from the Holy Spirit. God reminded me of the “like” that is most important; namely, the “thumbs up” from our Father in heaven, who isn’t looking for performance-based faith or any good works that are motivated for his approval. He wants us to know how crazy he is about us and how much he truly loves us.
Next time you are posting smart comments or fantastic photos, think about the messages that God has already posted for us to remember time and time again:
- “See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are. . . “ (1 John 3:1)
- “In this the love of God was made manifest among us, that God sent his only Son into the world, so that we might live through him. In this is love, not that we have loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins” (1 John 4:9-10).
- “ . . . but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Rom. 5:8).
- “. . . I have loved you with an everlasting love; therefore I have continued my faithfulness to you.” (Jer. 31:3)
- ”The Lord your God is with you, the Mighty Warrior who saves. He will take great delight in you; in his love he will no longer rebuke you, but will rejoice over you with singing” (Zeph. 3:17 NIV).