A few days ago I read an article that “Facebook can change your mood”. I thought about it. People can really change your life. Now before I go any further let me say I do not believe the answer is”run away to a tropical island” though in light of the long winter here in New England, that might not be so bad.
People are important. A long time ago in our church fellowship I paraphrased the Gerber ad, “people are our business, our only business.” So, what is the answer? Leave Facebook? Run away? How about choices of friends?People can bring you up or friends can being you down. The group of researchers (University of California, Yale and Facebook) analyzed the emotional content of billions of posts between January 2009 and March 2012. Their research showed a 1.16-1.19 increase in OVERALL negative posts.
Similar Quartz did some research. Selecting groups from the “rainy areas” of the country, research said, “For every negative post from the rainy group, dry friends posted 1.29 more negative posts than would normally be expected.” Your rainy day mood swings can change the folks in the sunny Middle East to be more negative!
Folks-being negative is a big deal. And then, you realize that what’s happening in your real life isn’t nearly as exciting. “Social media—Twitter, Instagram, Facebook—can create a false sense of connection with people,” says Sheri Meyers, PsyD, a therapist in Los Angeles (and author of Chatting or Cheating) “And, it’s immediate and 24/7, so there isn’t as much of a need to reach out to those that are close to us.”
The flip side is that a positive post changes the number of positive posts by 1.75. Nearly double.
Being positive is better!
Believers ought to be the happiest, most cheerful, positive folks on earth. Jesus prayed, “I come to you [Father]; and these things I speak in the world so that they may have My joy made full in themselves” (John 17:13)
Facebook, face to face, both are the realities of our current day life. People. Some hurting, some not.
Does it really work? Only yesterday, I felt better when I read of the successful surgery of a friend. Last night I had to fight off “sadness” for the divorce of friends and the subsequent fallout. The irony of the article is I was thinking about this over the last few weeks.
We are more than overcomers.
Years ago I saw the need to reduce the number of negative conversations people wanted to lay on me. I made the decision to cut my “listening” load of spending 90% of my time dealing with difficulties people were encountering to 90% with “problem-less” people so that I was efficient and compassionate with the one’s encountering troubles. Better for me. Better for them.
Your life, your conversations, your posts are going to bring light or darkness. As believers in the Kingdom of God and Jesus Christ, our call is to bring light to the darkness. To reveal the King.
Think about this for a moment. If we carried light to all our conversations…In a week or so, the power of “1.75” would have become so infectious…that 100% of the people would be touched.
Years ago I saw dark knights being changed to white knights. Lives being changed. God is moving. And so ought you. You can change the darkness to light! Today.