Why You Feel Isolated in a World of Social Media
Are social media followers really important?
We live in an age of social media where we often confuse followers with friends. Social media gives us the impression that we are connecting when we are really isolating from deep, intimate relationships with others. We’re left feeling alone even in the midst of constant communication, but how do we overcome that?
You don’t have to get lost in the social media frenzy of trying to gain followers who can’t provide what friends do. The Bible offers timeless wisdom about the importance of real, deep relationships and why to pursue them.
5 Reasons You Should Pursue Friends Over Followers
1. God created us for intimate community.
We were created to have intimate relationships; God never desired for us to be alone. Since the beginning of creation, God knew it was not good for Adam to be alone, and so he created Eve to live in community with him (Genesis 2:18).
When we isolate, we give the devil the power to lie to us. One of the reasons God gave us community is so we can be encouraged by others instead of deceived by the enemy (Hebrews 3:13). It’s powerful to have people in our lives who remind us of right and wrong.
2. God Himself lived in community.
As Christians, we look to God for examples of how we should live. God the Father has always lived in community with Jesus and the Holy Spirit. We see from the beginning of the world that God had community in the form of the Trinity (Genesis 1:26).
In addition, God sent the Holy Spirit to live inside of His followers, who work together as the church (Acts 2:1-4). Connecting with real people is a way we imitate God’s character of community.
3. Real friends are honest.
Social media can create surface level relationships that are not honest. It gives us the ability to show what we are happy about and often makes it appear like our lives are perfect. We do not generally post our struggles or real thoughts for everyone to see.
When you are not real with people, you cannot have deep relationships. Real friends share doubts and insecurities, and encourage one another through challenges (Colossians 3:9-10).
Knowing about someone is not the same as knowing them.
4. We desire to be deeply known and not just known about.
God desires to know us in a deep way, and because of that we desire to have others know us as well. However, knowing about someone is not the same as knowing them (Psalm 139:1-6).
On social media, we may know about a lot of people — but we may not know them on an intimate level. Having real relationships allow us to deeply know others and allow them to know us past surface level facts.
5. They point us to Jesus.
Having real friends gives you the opportunity to share challenges (Ecclesiastes 4:9-10). Your friends have the privilege of giving you advice that comes from the Bible. Even when you feel far from God, real friends can/ point you back to Jesus and remind you of truth you may have forgotten.
Social media in itself is not a bad thing. However, like anything in this world, it can become overused and abused. Instead of pursuing social media followers, seek deep relationships with other Christians that can draw you close to Jesus.