Social Media Theology: Are You Sure? Are You REALLY Sure?

"Are you sure you want to permanently delete your Facebook account?"

I click "yes."

"You do realize that you will NEVER EVER EVER be able to have a Facebook account again with this email address, don't you?" (my interpretation)

I click "yes."

"Okay. Sorry to see you go. We'll give you 14 days to change your mind. All you have to do is log in to your account and change this request."

I click "okay" because it's the only option.

So goes the end of Lent and my decision to leave the Facebook page I'd opened in 2009. For the past week, I logged back on to save information and make contacts. As I perused the site, I noticed a number of folks had just returned from their own Lenten "Facebook Fasts" and enjoyed reading their reflections.

Then I started reading more.

One click led to another.

Before I knew it, two hours had passed, sunlight had given way to darkness, and I'd forgotten to feed the dog. (I gave him string cheese and sliced turkey to make up for it. All is forgiven.)

I applaud the folks who left Facebook and have been able to return healthily. For now, I'm not able to do that, which is why I made the decision to delete the account.

Of course, as soon as I make the decision, questions pop up on the screen that lead me to ask, "Am I doing the right thing?" Decision making can be one of the most exciting and most stressful parts of being human because we want to do what's "right" for us and for others. Decisions can range from drinking black or green tea to whether or not to have children. No matter how big or small the issue, making choices forces us to face our fears and step forward in faith. Lent was a time for us to consider the choices we were making. Now that the trumpet has sounded, the tomb is empty, and He is risen, those choices haven't gone away. We step into the future with as much uncertainty as ever.

Last year, I noticed for the first time the extreme doubt of the disciples in the hours following Jesus' resurrection. I can just hear them as Mary Magdalene declared, "I have seen the Lord."

Peter might say, "Are you sure? I was there this morning, and I didn't see him."

John would pipe in, "Are you REALLY sure you saw him? I outran both you and Peter to the tomb and didn't see him either."

The others whisper and shake their heads, "no," in skepticism. They might turn against Mary as she yells above them, "No, really, I know what I saw! I know what I heard! Or at least I think I did...."

But until they saw him, heard him, and in the case of Thomas, touched him, they doubted. They were uncertain. They were afraid of what would happen next.

The New International Version of the Bible defines faith in Hebrews 11:1 as "confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see." It's hard to feel "confident" about the future and "assured" of things we cannot see. When our faith is in the power of Jesus Christ, the question of "are you sure?" doesn't go away. We'll make good decisions. We'll make poor decisions. We'll question our choices. But faith in this resurrected Lord means we don't have to make choices alone. He wants to help us. Our confidence blooms not in our own surety but in our trust that God will lead us.

The questions that popped up on my computer screen play in our minds all the time. When they do, why not try closing out those boxes with a simple response: "I don't know. But God does. So I will trust him to lead me through this decision." May our hope not be in what we know but in Who we worship.

all good things to each of you,
Pastor Darian