Monday, March 7, 2011

A Spiritual Boxing Ring...Facebook...By Fletch Whipp

Facebook – A Spiritual Boxing Ring?

Several years ago, I received a vision from the Lord that has stuck with me. The vision was of two Christian fish symbols, except one was inverted around so the mouths of the fish were facing each other. The symbols were contorted in such a way that the fish were in a process of a stand-off against each other, angrily glaring at one another.

The Lord spoke to me saying, ‘The enemy is asking which side you will take, I tell you to take neither for this thing is a disgrace in my sight. Have no part of this, rather spend time with Me’ The vision related to a very harrowing set of circumstances that were taking place in an environment I was involved with, yet the Lord made it clear, I was to stay out of it. In the last week, this vision returned in relation to a separate issue….

Facebook (FB) is a dominant part of our world today. I use it everyday. Unlike a large number of people, my friend list is deliberately small. I rarely search to ‘add’ people, unless I genuinely want to connect with them. I readily accept friend requests once vetted by way of seeing common interests, or mutual friends. I am connected with believers, non-believers, and atheists alike. For an increasing number of people in ministry, there is the general thinking to utilize FB to connect with as many people as possible to further their cause. Whilst I can understand that, that’s not the way I roll. Those whom I am connected with are friends, not a glorified email list, networking opportunity or marketing strategy. Yes, I will often place a link to the latest published writing on my FB page, but it is rare that I will place a link on a friends page, unless I really sense the Lord saying to do so. Even then, I will almost always send it via a private email instead of their wall, as I don’t want to give a hint in marketing myself. My FB friends who are reading will testify to that.

Be careful to not let Facebook become a spiritual boxing ring!

I need to qualify my position regarding FB, and give context in relation to a contentious subject that is increasingly polarizing Christians against each other. For some, in a selfish effort to ‘build’ their ministry network and befriend anyone, the enemy is totally setting them up for failure to wound others, or get wounded with.

If there is one subject that can create division in the body of Christ beyond doctrine, it is politics. Politics has been intertwined with faith for hundreds of years. The last several decades in America has seen the church become a vital platform and element in the political process, to espouse and denigrate political parties, figures and ideologies, regardless of their 501c3 outlines.

I have seen Christian leaders increasingly utilize their FB platform to rail against political parties they oppose. I will see comments like ‘Defriended a couple of people today because they didn’t like my comments about _______ (Insert your political nemesis there) ‘Truth hurts’. Worse still are the comments that attack the cortex of their faith, and are not just offensive, but sickeningly arrogant, ‘If they only knew God in their hearts, they wouldn’t support him/her as a political leader’ ‘Or Well it is now obvious they don’t hear the Holy Spirit’

Ahhh, I hear your cries already. ‘But Fletch, the ______ agenda is critical! The church must take action on the _____ issue. The church has lost ground in this area, we cannot afford to be silent on this! I hear you, issues exist that I feel strongly about too. But to place issues and causes above loving people, especially the lost is a total setup by the enemy. A setup that is fracturing relationships between believers. A setup that further divides an already divided Christian community. Anything satan can use to weaken the Christian church, remove unity, and stir up offense between believers, he WILL use.

I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people— for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. (1 Timothy 2:1-4)

I have taken time to pray for both former U.S President Bush and current President Obama. Now, let me ask you, have you prayed for your leader when they aren’t of your political persuasion? Or have you prayed for their removal… or worse? You are wasting your breath and putting yourself under a curse of judgment by praying evil over your leaders!

I have friends on FB who support an opposing party. I choose to allow love to rise to the surface. Who am I to judge their heart, and know where they are in their walk with the Lord? Who am I to say they are not in tune with God because of their political preference? My stance is best summed up as my long-standing statement on my FB info page under the political views ‘Never let politics get in the way of friendship’

Can you identify yourself as one of the Christian fish as detailed above? Let us heed the Lord’s word regarding it. ‘The enemy is asking which side you will take, I tell you to take neither for this thing is a disgrace in my sight. Have no part of this, rather spend time with Me’

1 comment:

Fallout said...

It is a good idea not to let every kind of bird make a home in your tree.