“What does the Bible say about…?”
This question often gives me pause for thought. While it was easy to get stickers in Sunday school with a pert “The Bible says.” answer, real-life often requires more wrestling.
After all, Israel is literally the nation that wrestles with God.
As a marketer, it can be easy to lose sight of my faith, of how a scriptural worldview impacts things like Google algorithms, content marketing, data protection and privacy, social media, and information overload.
As I was reading a book by Vishal Mangalwadi, The Book That Made Your World, I read a whole chapter on how a biblical theology in the west impacted technology and drove innovation. I recommend reading the book, but it got me thinking about what Social Media Management looks like from a biblical worldview.
Relationships Across Distances
The reason I got started in social media and signed up many friends and family for their social media channels was this: to be able to connect with people in a reliable fashion across long distances.
“Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God… Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.”I John 4: 7 and 11
This might be the simplest purpose, but it is one we often forget when we are busy discussing whatever makes us passionate. And I know, I have found myself using social media to attempt to correct people (not at all a Biblical purpose of social media nor an effective one).
So, as you consider marketing or just opening your preferred social app, ask yourself: how can I love others through my time on this platform?
“Sing for joy in the Lord, O you righteous ones;Psalm 33:1-2
Praise is becoming to the upright.
Give thanks to the Lord with the lyre;
Sing praises to Him with a harp of ten strings.”
I can remember a choir tour 15 years ago, and how we all shared photos with each other on this new social app, Facebook. Although time has gone by, the artistic nature of many platforms has not gone away.
Just be careful what you share, and what you search for.
You can find amazing music, hilarious comedy, pictures to inspire, songs to uplift your soul.
You can also find the garbage of humanity.
We tend to blame the platform when we fill our feed with trash but that might just mean it is time to unfollow people and pages that are not bringing the joy of the Lord into your daily life. I have to regularly plan out who I follow just to ensure that I am getting content that follows one of these purposes. There is amazing music and art that can both make you smile and bring your soul peace.
Wisdom shouts in the street, she lifts her voice in the square; at the head of the noisy streets she cries out; at the entrance of the gates in the city, she utters her sayings: “How long, o naive ones, will you love simplicity? Scoffers, how long will you delight in scoffing and fools hate knowledge?”Proverbs 1:20-22
While this is one of the most difficult areas to use social media well, there is wisdom to be found in many counselors.
Just choose your counselors well.
As you use social media to network, to connect to others, to spend your time, to build a business, consider who you are listening to and who is listening to you.
Avoid scoffers, the naive, and fools on social media platforms.
Avoid them in real life too, for that matter.
When you delight in knowledge, a social media platform can multiply your ability to research, to learn.
Increasing Your Communication
And they said to Him, “We have here only five loaves and two fish.” And he said, “Bring them here to Me.” And ordering the multitudes to recline on the grass, he took the five loaves and the two fish. Looking up toward heaven, He blessed the food and breaking the loaves, he gave them to the disciples. The disciples gave to the multitudes, and they all ate, and were satisfied. And they picked up what was left over of the broken pieces, twelve full baskets.Matthew 14:17-21
The biblical images of organic growth are many. You could almost say there is a plethora of examples of God’s abundance being supernaturally made available for people.
Social media gives us a tool to enjoy an increase in our communication. Where before you had to go stand on a soapbox in the marketplace and shout to be heard, you can now create a meme and post it on Reddit and suddenly have a large audience.
So these are 4 purposes that I see for social media, and how you can focus your social media management for good, not evil.