SOCIAL MEDIA: KILL THE IMMORAL MESSAGE AT YOUR DOORSTEP
One fateful day, there was this great joy that enwrapped the faces of my colleagues after a seven-hour shift. Yes, time to go home! So it was, on that beautiful afternoon as we were driving through one of the bridges in a Nigerian city, behold, a surprising sight: a sane, nude man begging for a lift to escape public shame.
I was touched to my bone marrow as the man ran towards a Good Samaritan, a truck driver who was willing to help. Throughout my journey home, my mind kept wondering what the person might have done for fellow human beings, created in the image and after the likeness of God, to have stripped him completely of his clothing and dumped him on a major bridge where he would experience public humiliation.
This was an ungodly act irrespective of the sin of that man. You won’t get any credit from God for such inhumane act! The worst part of the whole scene is: instead of passersby to show compassion and mercy by clothing the man’s nudity, they were busy taking pictures of the naked but sane man. Many of us have completely lost our moral value of brotherliness. Many are caught in the social media fever of dehumanising fellow human beings rather than preserving their dignity.
The pictures of the nude man were captured for personal and public viewing. Such images flood the social media daily and many of us “Christians waste our precious time uploading these dehumanising images to help spread them to friends, relatives and the likes”. If this is being sociable, then it is insane and ungodly. We are Christians – ministers of the Good News and not immorality. Today, we do more of the latter than the former and it is fast becoming an acceptable way of life.
The zeal and willingness we put into preaching these immoral and degrading messages, if channelled towards our calling – proclaiming the Good News of repentance and love would long have caused the world to experience the transformation we all long for and re-created a world of harmony, peace and joy.
It is time to turn over a new leaf, beloved brothers and sisters in Christ. Kill the immoral message at your doorstep! Do not upload it! Do not spread it! Delete it immediately upon receiving it or you might be tempted to watch or spread it. Ask yourself: What is the gain in it all? Is it the joy of uploading it, of being the first to see it, or of laughing at the dehumanisation of a fellow human being? Why burn data, time and resources to achieve a mission that would add no value to your life, friends, relatives or the society?
In truth, Satan is the one gaining. You are only helping him to achieve his earthly mission – to kill, steal and destroy (see John 10:10). So, you are now Satan’s minister! These messages are destroying individuals, relationships and even communities. They arouse the erotic souls of viewers, and after seeing such videos or pictures, they give in to pornography, infidelity, masturbation, rape and all forms of immoral venture.
Do not forget you will be held accountable for every soul you won for Satan (see Luke 17) and rewarded for every soul you won for God’s kingdom. The choice is yours to either be a messenger of God or for Satan. The messengers of God have an obligation, but not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh (Romans 8:13). It is to the Spirit, to live according to the Spirit.
The spiritual person works with God, under God, for God and knows it. The better he realizes his position of dependence, the more God will make use of him to sanctify the world. – Mother Teresa
God wants to you and me to sanctify the world. How? Father Shawn Aaron, LC, gave an answer in his admonition in Daily Meditation with Regnum Christi: Jesus wants you and me to be his light in contemporary society. By the way we live our lives, other people must see Christ. They must see the dignity of the human person and the noble calling each one of us has to live forever with God. They must see that love and mercy triumph over evil, suffering and death. The world needs our light because the world needs Christ.
Furthermore, Pope Francis queried, “We need to ask ourselves if our lives have the flavour of the Gospel; if others perceive that we are men and women of God; if it is the Holy Spirit that moves our lives.” This call for self-evaluation should lead us to ask if the way we treat others especially on social media reflects the flavour of the Gospel; if those who read our messages or watch our pictures and videos perceive us as men and women of God.
Does my activity on social media bring honour to God or to Satan? Would I be comfortable if I was dehumansed on social media? How often do I live by the New Commandment – love one another as I have loved you (John 13:34)?
Heavenly Father, grant me the grace to be my brother and sister’s keeper. Help me to be a light to the world in all that I do. Amen.
Jesus Christ Speaks
I give you a new commandment, that you love one another. Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another. By this everyone will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another. (John 13:34-35 NRSV).