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Needless to reiterate, but pertinent at this point to state, is the fact that I have been actively online for over thirteen years. Constantly engaging (in and out) with the cyberspace. This is not stated to mean that it is so long a time, but we cannot deny that with such time online come lots of experiences. These experiences have been both negative and positive alike. They write upon the lifespan of one’s psycho-sexual, psychological, intellectual, spiritual and social development.

The first lie that every young person has been fed is the “fact” that we cannot be or live apart the general media, especially the social media. Availability for use does not necessitate actual use. When this is balanced, it becomes important. This then leads to the challenge when one interacts with the general media.

One basic challenge that has constantly plugs its head out in my everyday use of the cyberspace is that of retaining my identity while online! This can be viewed in two dimensions: first is the challenge of remaining the believer that you are deep from within while you are online or secondly, assuming a status of “Believer-ship” that you are not to give others an impression of you.

This is a battle fought by young Believers who network on the internet, both the faithful and the only religious Christians. Young people are constantly influenced by the forces on the cyberspace to conform to a certain lifestyle that is not originally theirs. This influence continually opens us up to large chunks of information and broad groups of people who carry diverse ideologies and philosophies that are strange to the kingdom. You scroll, looking through your timelines reading posts, messages from people who you have links to. You are tagged to one post/picture/video or the other. You are mentioned on one issue or another. Your are poked messaged or shared a link. It goes on and on and on, daily. And you life begins to revolve around a pattern: scroll, click, like, comment, share; add, follow, tweet, mention; post, update, add…like that. It doesn’t seem to be a problem from the surface but it builds a motor-behaviour that takes you farther than you subscribed for. Addiction!

Out there are Christian youngsters, who change their Identities online. These include their names, and other bio-data just to become convenient to do one evil or the other. Some hide under this guise to have sex chats, access pornographic content, and or initiate others into this vain venture. Passionate to understand and explore their sexuality while growing up in perhaps a society or family that doesn’t speak about such, many are forced under such aliases online in order to do evil. As a result, the church is filled with active youths who are under the devils bondage. Our young people need help and the church must step in to help them. For all is not well!

Just like the active literal persecution against the church today, there is a psychological and intellectual persecution directed towards the body of Christ. Most of these other forms of persecution are carried out via the instrument of social and general media; even the print media. Strange ideas like atheism, karma, universality of religion; even the new age religion, the centrality of man and so many others are examples of intellectual war been raged upon and against the belief of Salvation in and through Jesus alone. On the other hand, alien doctrines like one must not wait for marriage before sex; nothing like fornication & masturbation is not a problem; sin is relative and only what you define it to be; there is no hell fire, how can a loving God do such; and many others are actually many psychological persecution the church is facing in other to make cold the knees of saints. All these are being advanced over the media, proposed via movies we watch and made appealing to our minds and consciences in the cyberspace. By now we should already know young people are receiving invitations online to join strange fraternities which turn out to teach New Age beliefs, wizardry, free-mindedness and a lot.  

All these and directed towards influencing and changing the lifestyle of the Believer, towards neutralizing and contaminating our faith. But would this evil prevail?

 

For the God-chaser Social-networker, the social media is only a tool and not the rule. It becomes to him or her, a platform for doing good. The limitless tentacles, widespread reach and efficiency of the instrument of media gives it a uniqueness to become undeniably an effective tool for Christian evangelism. Believer-Networkers can first achieve this by simply living the God-live even online. In this way, employing the use of the tools giving by facebook, twitter, whatsapp, BBM, 2go and other platforms to advance the purpose of the kingdom online. Do not belittle the power your words, post, updates, or any information you pass online. You will be amazed the impact it makes on those who use them. Let all be exhorting to those who hear and see them.

Instead of ideal chats and fruitless surfing, we must begin to wisely engage in internet evangelism. All social Networks are dialogue and relationship based which makes it effective for sharing our perspective which is faith-based online. It is not to be viewed as pulpit to preach, rather as a platform to conveniently startup and convey issues regarding our faith in an acceptable manner. We can easily comment, share links to posts, videos, etc that will engage people in the area of interest as regards God’s perspective. We can also reach out to people in countries where open evangelism is banded, via the social media…starting up chats at points of interest leading to issues of salvation. Lastly, we must realize that we have been blessed with the most effective tool yet, to reach the World.

In all:

10 God does both the making and saving. He creates each of us by Christ Jesus to join Him in the work he does, the good work he has gotten ready for us to do, work we had better be doing.

                               Ephesians 2. MSG

Every morning, I have my social media routine. Instagram first – it’s my favorite. I open Twitter, check my email and finally Facebook where I mindlessly scroll and swipe, pausing on the stories that I’m most interested in seeing. Sound familiar?

Throughout my day, I would unconsciously open my browser on my phone, type in “f” and hit enter. My phone knows that “f” in the search bar means Facebook. I’ve trained it that well. Then, a month ago I quit Facebook.

To be honest, I was struggling to see the purpose of my scrolling. I would find myself just wasting time and getting lost in the deep abyss of updates, religious rants and cat videos. I would log off and fail to recall seeing anything of value. Yes, it was nice to be “connected.” But the more often I said it, the less I believed it was actually true.

The average American spends 40 minutes a day on Facebook.(1) And among adult users on the social media site, the average number of friends is 338.(2) So if we do the math, we spend roughly 7 seconds per friend (assuming we haven’t blocked half of them because of their political views, baby pictures, or Farmville invitations!)

I suppose this is why I quit. I didn’t need one more excuse to perpetuate false connections with friends. Being a traveling musician, I am learning to value the time spent face-to-face with people. I long for deeper relationships, broader conversations; to know and to be known. It is becoming more and more difficult to cultivate offline relationships in our online world.

Henri Nouwen says this, “What we see, and like to see, is cure and change. But what we do not see and do not want to see is care: the participation in the pain, the solidarity in suffering, the sharing in the experience of brokenness.”(3)

Care takes time. True connection takes time and presence – much longer than the 7 seconds we allot while we are online. Brené Brown defines connection “as the energy that exists between people when they feel seen, heard, and valued; when they can give and receive without judgment; and when they derive sustenance and strength from the relationship.”(4)

In our ever-present need for social connection, the temptation is to believe that it happens online. That by sharing our opinions, favorite selfies and blogs, we are seen, heard and valued. But we were designed for more. We were designed for an exchange. Jesus’ ministry was not only focused on the masses, but also spent intentionally with his 12 best friends.

The night before he was betrayed and murdered, he gave them the greatest charge. “Let me give you a new command: Love one another. In the same way I loved you, you love one another. This is how everyone will recognize that you are my disciples – when they see the love you have for each other.” (John 13:34-35) Jesus revealed that connection was an exchange. A receiving of love and a giving of love. Connection is not something we observe, but rather something in which we participate.

Love is cultivated over time. Quitting Facebook didn’t free up a ton of time and I don’t believe it is the solution to our problem with connection. But it is one less distraction I fight against each day. My hope is to be more present in each moment. To love more fully. To care more deeply. To take serious the charge of Jesus, to love the way He has loved me.

(1) Mark Zuckerberg, Q2 earnings call. Reported by nbcnews.com

(2) Pew Research Center, 6 New Facts about Facebook. Aaron Smith. 2/3/14

(3) Henri JM Nouwen, Out of Solitude

(4) Brené Brown, The Gifts of Imperfection.

https://www.weareworship.com/us/blog-2/quitting-facebook

The birth of Social networks gave rise to social media addiction; the introduction of Smart Phones concerted and established this societal-derogatory venom. Quote me anywhere; social media, especially the social networks have done more harm than good to this generation. [It’s to me, first a basic fact.] This might not be because it was meant for harm, but it has been employed for such cause by “the one who rules the things of this World.” The clamor here and there that the internet, as an advantage, unites the World, making it a global village is just one part of the story for the full truth is not been told. The concluding truth about this is that it will only facilitate the establishment of the One-World Government and aide the work of the anti-christ in near time to come. [These are thought for another day, though]; i.e, besides the evil being perpetrated by the Social Media Daily.

I am highly fascinated by mobile technology and cannot hide my sheer appreciation for the advancement and feat being achieved in the media and communication industries lately. But more important than my fascination, is the truth underlying this whole venture. What truth?  That these technology gadgets have been designed to kill you and I, but least have we realized this.

I have followed the specs of the new Apple Corporation’s iPhone 6 and 6plus, which was released September 19th in the US. By 12th September, iPhone 6 have already been pre-ordered by millions of people around the globe. Surprisingly, in the same week of iPhone 6 release, Apple sold 10 million copies of the phone according to an Apple representative. Isn’t this outrageous??? Today, the cheapest you can purchase iPhone 6 in Nigeria is about 209,999 naira. To add to this fascination is the “fantabuluous” Blackberry Passport, of Blackberry 10.3 BB10 make. What a device! It was launched globally in London, Toronto and Dubai on September 24th, 2014, at 599 dollars, then. It sold over 200,000 in 2 days of release and the Number 1 selling unlocked phone on Amazon.com within just hours of release. Now, this is besides other devices such as the Super sleek slim tablets, palm-tops, iPads and other mobile devices that allow us express and easy access to the internet and smooth communication between and among countries, societies and civilization. While we rejoice for these advancements, I am greatly worried for my generation and for my unborn kids. Would they be safe in such a society?

If you took time to follow the preceding trail of talk, all you see is a World driven by intense craving for the things of this World…picture of a society so concerned, and working tirelessly to satisfy its lust for the things of this age. Where is the place of God in our lives?

Therefore, Social Media addiction is the intense dependence upon and use of the various social media/ network. Persistent use, passionate acquisition; uncontrolled use, competitive possession, all constitute social media addiction. You are addicted to social media/ networks when you ‘love it’; when it takes the bulk of you time and resources daily without yielding constructive positive outcome. When it begins to dictate your lifestyle and set the course for your existence. When it ceases your love and captures your heart. When it takes God’s place and time and stands a god in your life; then you are beginning to lose it.

In His narrative, Pastor Chris Delvan Gwamna said “life can hardly exist in a vacuum, we are consistently under certain influences and our urge for props, stuff, adventure, substances alcohol among others is ever present. Our generation is one at risk to be an addict generation. There is no shortage of options to be hooked on; some people are at a point where they are unconsciously developing one addiction, some are currently grappling with one, while some are struggling to get out of one.”

One thing you must become aware of is the fact that: influence is a product of any kind of interaction, whatsoever. In fact, it is the goal of every kind of interaction. This in turn breeds continual dependence upon the “influencing-obect”, thereby giving birth to the addiction circle. Many Christian youths out there are unaware of the gradual subtle influence of the social media and have fallen to the addiction, thus. Unawares, they believe their interaction with the media is good so far.

Just evaluate: how long do you spend online every day? How constructively productive is your time spent online? Do you constantly share your experiences with the social networks? I mean your Break-ups, fights, relationships, even your locations and personal experiences? Gone are the days of diaries. Facebook is now the new World-class Diary. How much do you esteem your phones and devices? How do you feel when you cannot go online for a while? How do you react when you cannot find your phone or device? Do you know why you go crazy? It is not because of your contacts…that is what you always say. It’s because you have wrapped your life around your phone; because it is your new found love. It is because your whole life is in it. If your phone is to be analyzed, it will tell everything about you.

Our Smart phones have been designed to be addictive. Every single activity comes with a notification alert so you are forced to refer to it each moment. These devices have been carefully designed to greatly appeal to users and actively engage us. Highly interactive and easily usable. But the question is this: were they designed to do just what we were told?

“Our generation is one at risk to be an addict generation”. Not just addicted to drugs and substances, but to the media, to social networks and gadgets. To the the internet and the technology of this age. As a result also, to the civilization (beliefs, religions, ideas, gods, etc) of this generation. That is what addiction to the media does. It links us up with destiny-destroying and life-killing agents.

There is only one way out for young believers who want to be earthly relevant, yet heavenly conscious; those who want to strike the balance between interacting with this World and living for God. And that is dealing with the social media addiction.

Therefore:

All things are lawful unto me but not all things are expedient: all things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any.

— 1 Corinthians 6.12

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God grant us grace to overcome. Keep faith!

Only one source frees us from Social Media Addiction: find out!

FREEMAN'S LOUNGE

Pst Chris Delvan Gwamna

Pst Chris Delvan Gwamna

THE BEST KEPT SECRET ABOUT ADDICTION

When you mention names like Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Larry Bird, Wilt Chamberlain, Michael Jordan, Shaquile O’Neal, look closely there could have been a Christopher among the 50 Greatest Players in the history of NBA. Sadly Christopher didn’t get to the list; truth is he didn’t even get to play in the NBA. Fast forward twenty years after, Christopher now Pastor Chris Delvan shares in his compelling sermon on the 5th of June at TWB, on how cigarette smoking took away his basket ball dream, and how drugs took away his music dream. An addiction can be fun in the immediate, but could be cost you something vital in the long run?

Chris had a noble dream as a teenager to play for the NBA, which was his ticket to live the life of his dreams, but he smoked twice as much cigarettes, as…

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Okay: I don’t like to say this but I have to! I have had to do some digging after promptings and found out some truths!
“BLASPHEMY CHALLENGE”, “ICE-BUCKET CHALLENGE” now “GRATITUDE CHALLENGE”.

Friends, you don’t wanna do what you don’t know where it stems from…these challenges might seem for a good cause but really have shady roots! Go on Youtube, you’ll see…the Blasphemy Challenge is absolutely ungodly and demonic…it (& others) also inspired the ICE BUCKET challenge (even though it’s for a good cause) and most importantly I also believed it inspire the – “our” GRATITUDE CHALLENGE! Truly, my friend Sweetness Obim Giwa said “I still think we should stop playing catch ups. we should give the world something to emulate…cos we always wait for the world to do then copy…thats really sad”. those were her words and I subscribe to it!
If you search on youtube…you will see videos of how alot of young people around the globe daming their souls; out-rightly denying the God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit!
Friends, we are in a battle if you have not realized it…”no more rumour, there are wars going on”… for your soul, for you life…
Guard your hearts with all diligence…God will see us through.
Friends, lets stop these challenge things…lets go about the normal ways we had been potraying God on our pages before now!

I just shared briefly about this but trust God to write properly about these events and the end of age in our next issue…KEEP FAITH!!!

Never Loose sight of Jesus!!!

Listening to God’s Word frees our souls from the oppression of this age…

Bishop David Abioye's Podcast

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Hundreds of millions of people are running toward social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter to participate in the relational components of the Internet. Are these networks the next big mission field or an enormous waste of time? Should a Christian participate in social networking? The answer to these questions should be determined by whether we can honestly ask God to bless and use our actions for His own good purposes. “So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God” (1 Corinthians 10:31). If we are willing to let God use our participation for His glory, we have freedom to participate.

Social Media…

Posted: April 30, 2014 in Uncategorized
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Social Media

[Social media] is a tool for interaction and connection, not merely a megaphone to announce the next church program and party. Social media opens doors and opportunities to engage with people who rarely, if ever, step foot in a church building.

                                                    — Clark Campbell

Posted: April 3, 2014 in Uncategorized
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Meanwhile, We here< enjoin you to be part of the Unveiling of one of our own for Christ: Bapshang! Album Titled: Take it All! April 13, 2014. 2pm. Azi Nyako Youth Centre, Dadin Kowa, Jos. Plateau State.Bapshang

Posted: April 3, 2014 in Uncategorized

Hello,

Watch out as we begin our series on the Social Networking/Media and the Christian Youth. I trust it will be expositiory! Dont forget to drop your comments for discussion!

God Bless You richly,

realPhiDims.