I had been fairly active in Facebook for several months. My two previous forays were much shorter. My philosophy of Facebook was to publicize my speaking events, link to important articles, and give some social criticism and biblical exhortation. I was very thin on personal updates and trivia, although I did post not a few wise cracks on other people's posts--maybe too many.
So why did I pull the plug and leave my 277 "friends" behind? First, the signal to noise ratio was not too good. Some of this may have been my fault, since I adopted an "anybody can be my friend policy." I opted for quantity over quality in order to get my message out. I seldom asked anyone to be a "friend," but if I did, it was someone I knew. However, I refused few "friend requests." Given all the "friends," clutter accumulated quickly. Second, I did waste some time looking at others photographs. One person had over 700! Don't worry, I didn't look at many of them. What does that say about our image obsessed culture? Third, I could not escape the bimbo uprisings at the upper left of the pages--babes who were "looking for me." This got tiresome, especially in light of what Jesus says about such things (Matthew 5:27-32). Fourth, my email was flooded with Facebook responses. I suppose I could have opted out of this feature without shutting down the whole thing.
What am I missing in my Facebook-free afterlife? If people really want to contact me, there are myriad of other ways to do so. However, Facebook seems to be becoming the medium of choice for quick communication. Email is already old hat for teens and early twenty-somethings, I hear. It was sometimes enjoyable to find an old friend and contact him or her, but how deep can one go on Facebook? Those with whom I rekindled a friendship should be willing to interact with me in other media, I hope. My 277 are now left bereft of my endless links and preachments, but they may still consult this august and non-award-winning blog.
All in all, I am extremely aware of the need to make the most of our limited time on earth, to number our days that we may get a heart of wisdom, and to seek first the Kingdom of God. Desipe my philosophy of Facebook engagement, and my general refusal to chatter or post photographs of myself in cute poses (if that is possible), Facebook seemed to be something of an obstacle to more important pursuits. Instead of reading endless updates, I could be reading the Bible or praying or reading a good book or writing articles for publication in real bound volumes!