This morning I started thinking about high school. I’m reading a really good book that is exploring a young woman’s behavior when she was in high school…why she acted that way in the first place, and how those behaviors have shaped her present day adulthood. So, I started thinking about who I was in high school. Thinking especially about my last two years of high school up in Bethel, Alaska. And you know, I really don’t have any regrets about who I was during those years. They were good years.
High school is such a public time in our lives. We go to school every day, we are surrounded by our classmates and teachers. We do extra-curricular activities and we are surrounded by all those people. Who-we-are is a very public thing. We can’t really hide it.
It’s different when you are an adult. Especially when you’re a stay at home mom. I don’t have a large group of people that I see every day. I go to church on Sundays, but there usually isn’t time for a lot of private social interaction. I go to doctors appointments, very sterile, very little personal conversation. I go to the store, say hi to people. Occasionally we might have a playdate where I can visit with another mom for a couple hours, but that doesn’t happen too often. In reality, most of my interactions with other people occur on social media. I get on Facebook every day. I write my blog and share it in the blog world and share it on Facebook. I interact with other people’s posts. I message people. I am very much present online.
So, today, I asked myself the question, Who am I on Facebook?
Am I someone who is representing myself as a child of God?
Are my words kind?
Am I respectful?
Do I care about the downtrodden?
Have I gotten so caught up with defending one group of people, that I now spend a lot of time vilifying my “enemies”?
Am I hateful towards groups of people I disagree with?
(Example:Trump, Obama, Left wing radicals, right wing radicals, people who get abortions, people who fight against abortions, people who are pro-socialism, people who anti-government, people who believe in global warming, people who don’t believe in global warming, people who wear masks in public, people who don’t wear masks in public, people who watch CNN, people who watch FOX NEWS.)
Are the things I’m passionate about actually creating a stumbling block for someone else? (check out Romans 14: 13-19.)
Am I living out Love the way that Paul described in 1 Corinthians 13?
1 Corinthians 13 (NIV)
13 If I speak in the tongues[a] of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. 2 If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. 3 If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast,[b] but do not have love, I gain nothing.
4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
8b Love never fails.
It’s been good for me to hit pause and do an evaluation…Who am I in public?
I can see some things I need to work on. I can see where I’ve been impatient, I’ve kept records of wrongs, I’ve delighted in evil, haven’t protected.
Hopefully, making myself aware of these things will be enough to help me shift my path a bit. Remind myself of my Core Values. Read my personal mission statement again. So that, years in the future, I can look back and say, You know, I have no regrets of who I was during that time in my life.