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Women Living Well Blog: Spring Cleaning Your Facebook Account

Women Living Well Blog

Monday, March 21, 2011

Spring Cleaning Your Facebook Account


During the year of 2010, 250 million NEW people joined Facebook bringing the total users on Facebook at the end of 2010 to 600 million! Facebook is growing and the pressure to be there is not going away.  It's the new front porch. 


Last summer I went on evening runs through my new neighborhood and it was the dogs, crickets and me outside.  Everyone else seemed to be inside enjoying their family, air conditioning, computers, and televisions.  I thought - I know my friends on Facebook, blogland and twitterville better than my next door neighbors

So let me preface all that I am about to say about Facebook with this statement: Technology is neutral.  It can be used for good or bad.  We, the sinners, determine whether we are going to use it for good or evil.  


I personally enjoy Facebook but for those who regularly participate we can find secret sins creeping in - or worse - our sinful heart is revealed for all to see. And I wonder if we should PAUSE and do some spring cleaning in this area of our lives.



I Timothy 5:13 warns young women about becoming  "idlers, going about from house to house, and not only idlers, but also gossips and busybodies, saying what they should not." ESV   Facebook is an easy place for women to become idle and busy bodies.  So Let's Ask Ourselves:


Am I using Facebook to complain about my husband, children, the weather etc?

Am I measuring my worth based on how many friends I have?

Am I portraying a fake reality?

Am I addicted to checking my page every 30 minutes?

Have I used a sharp tongue toward someone and need to apologize?

Do I have some bikini shots up from 5 years ago that need deleted? (read my modesty post here)

Am I married and flirting with a guy (other than my husband) on Facebook?

Am I married and developing a deep emotional connection with a man other than my husband on Facebook (read my post about this here)?

Am I ignoring my children or husband to hang out on the front porch?

Do I feel excluded from some of my friends when they post pictures together and get jealous?

Am I feeling envious of someone's house, car, clothes, friendships, status, looks etc? 

Am I distracted in my daily life by a Facebook debate?

Am I malicious when I respond to someone with thoughts that oppose mine?

Am I using my status updates to brag?

Am I using the information I've read on Facebook to gossip with friends in real life about a friend on Facebook?


Look at this extensive list of dangers that exist each time we log onto Facebook!  Did you realize all the temptations that Facebook opens up for you?  I honestly did not the first time I created my account.  Yet - as I sat down to write this post these thoughts came pouring out of my mind in rapid fire.  Why?  Because I've either participated in the above sins or have been troubled as I have watched Christian sisters pulled into these danger zones.


Dear Christian sisters - we are followers of Christ - our Facebook accounts must reflect this!  We are the salt and light of the world - our Facebook updates must look different from the rest of the worlds.


I'm not saying that every status update must be a Bible verse or hymn.  BUT I am saying that our lives are not our own.  We belong to Jesus and so our finger tapping must reflect his heart - not ours.  Let's let Jesus permeate everything we do - from loving our husbands and children to hanging out on the front porch.  Pray for your friends, encourage them, be bold and share what you read in your quiet time, respond to friends in crisis, connect with missionaries and encourage them, pass on a blog link to a blog post you read today (hint hint lol!!!), or a youtube that speaks truth into your friend's lives.


And a good rule of thumb to follow is - no Facebook until you've read THE BOOK and have had some face to face time with your Heavenly Father.  You will need to be saturated in his truth to handle the onslaught of temptation and ministry that is presented to you everyday on Facebook.  I'm praying for you sisters!  Let's make a difference for the glory of God on Facebook!


Walk with the King!
This is linked to Titus 2sdays, We Are That Family, Raising Homemakers and A Holy Experience.


Today's post is a part of the "Put Your House In Order" Series. Please visit the ladies below!

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52 Comments:

Blogger Paula ~ Princess Warrior Chick said...

Awesome post Courtney! I have battled with being on my FB front porch too much and have even deleted friends because of it. I like to keep in touch with family and friends, and network with my overseas blog friends, but I have to be really careful to maintain an even keel about it all. Thanks for a refresher! Paula :)

March 21, 2011 at 7:17 AM  
Blogger Coffee and a Mop said...

I used to be addicted to the games on Facebook big time. I put them before cleaning my house and even my kids. I didn't with hubby because he would complain, but deep down all I wanted to do was go on there.

God started to convict me and I just gave the whole thing up. I'm not on facebook anymore.

Now I'm starting to get big into blogs but it's not such a deep rooted addiction like the games. It's something I just enjoy and am able to put it down when needed. I gave up something for God and He gave me something better (and more balanced) in return!

I love all these craft blogs out there that turn nothing into something great. Definitely helps with the decorating part of homemaking lol!

March 21, 2011 at 7:28 AM  
Blogger Michelle said...

So true, great post
xx

March 21, 2011 at 7:35 AM  
Blogger jkmellen said...

I had a serious. Problem with facebook and then my 2 yr old broke our all in one screen and the laptop doesn't work. We didn't fix the computers yet but my marriage is fixed, I sown time watching my kids grow and am cooking dinner every night. Loved the post.

March 21, 2011 at 8:41 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't like FB and get on there as little as possible. The bragging became overwhelming. My wise husband told me to not get on there as much and it has been the best advice!! I know another girl who was struggling to get pregnant and had a hard time dealing with all the baby posts, ultrasounds, etc. I think FB can be a real downer. Maybe I am alone???

March 21, 2011 at 8:44 AM  
Blogger Olivia (Her Noble Character) said...

Wow! I hadn't even thought through all of those ways of using facebook for evil, but I know I'm guilty of some of them. Thanks for the reminders of truth and how it should be practically applied in the realm of facebook!
Love,
Olivia

March 21, 2011 at 8:50 AM  
Blogger cindy said...

Amen sis I loved this post it is so spot on and I have myself been A involved in the sinfulness it can bring or B seen others using Facebook for anything but Good!! Thanks for sharing thissomething to ponder as Spring is here and many are Spring cleaning many areas of their lives!!
Thanks Courtney keep walking with our King.....
In His divine Grace,
Cindy

March 21, 2011 at 9:02 AM  
Blogger MaddieLynn said...

A friend was just telling me last night that she deleted her Facebook account. I was SHOCKED and asked her why. She listed some of the very reasons you just stated!

Great food for thought here.

March 21, 2011 at 9:25 AM  
Blogger Christine said...

Wonderful advice! I went through a period of spring cleaning on FB and it has made my time there more true and meaningful, and God-glorifying, which is the most important thing. It's something I should always revisit!

March 21, 2011 at 9:29 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you sooo much for this! I shared the link on my FB. I've struggled with even having one for sometime. I always try to stay positive and never complaining, but I do find myself taking more time on FB and less time on what I should be doing. And I KNOW it's caused problems with people I know. I just love this!!

March 21, 2011 at 9:49 AM  
Blogger Christina said...

Thank you for this post. It made me really think about the way I spend my time on Facebook compared to the way I spend my time elsewhere. I am going to reflect on this more and make it a point to be more aware of my actions when online.

March 21, 2011 at 9:58 AM  
Blogger SamBev said...

Fantastic post!

March 21, 2011 at 10:21 AM  
Anonymous Lindsey said...

WOW!! Thanks for sharing, this was so good :) What a great reminder ... it is so easy to get caught up in the "world of FB".
I enjoy your blog and encouraging post. Thanks again for sharing!!

Lindsey

March 21, 2011 at 10:24 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I cleaned up my account a while back when you had post about Facebook, I deleted most of the guys especially ones that I had some sort of relationship with before I was married, nothing was going on that was wrong but I just felt like I was honoring my husband by not having them as friends.
My husband recently got a facebook account and his heart was in the right place because he was using it to quote bible verses and post about Jesus but some of his friends started posting pictures of women in the porn industry and in adult magazines and he was exposed to it while making it a big point for so long to stay away from it. He ended up deleting his account and I am often tempted to delete mine because of the filth that I see daily.

March 21, 2011 at 10:33 AM  
Blogger ClassiclyAmber said...

Oh, this is good advice for anyone! Last year, both my hubby and myself took a looooong break from the Internet in general, and it made the biggest difference! I missed FB at first, but quickly got the point to where I absolutely LOVED the freedom! About half a year later, I went back to my FB [though hubby has never really returned] and now approach it totally different. Most all the men from my friends list have been deleted [save for those who share joint accounts with their wives]...and the reason I did that was because for me personally, I was uncomfortable with the private messages I'd get from certain men or the comments on my pics. It works better for me to just be networked with other women.

Anyway, thanks for sharing this. You've made many fabulous points!

March 21, 2011 at 10:51 AM  
Blogger Mrs.B said...

VERY true Courtney!

March 21, 2011 at 11:57 AM  
Blogger Lisa said...

Great post, Courtney. It's sad to see the posts of some people who proclaim to be Christians. The world is always watching. We must be careful that they always see Jesus shining through.

March 21, 2011 at 12:30 PM  
Blogger Heather said...

This is such a helpful post. Thank you for sharing!

March 21, 2011 at 1:51 PM  
Blogger Anna Mary said...

I recently deleted my FB and Twitter. I guess I just felt like it was one big gossip session. I don't miss it. Life seems better just making friends the old fashioned way, face to face.

March 21, 2011 at 2:12 PM  
Blogger Theresa said...

I recently deleted my old FB account and got rid of over half of my friends. My husband and I decided that we would have a joint account with family and long distance friends only - however most of those people are not Christians and I am seeing more junk than I used to for some reason. :(

I would love to hear from others on FB for teenagers and how to monitor this? I have two teenagers (one boy and one girl).

March 21, 2011 at 2:46 PM  
Blogger Regina Coblentz said...

Thanks for sharing this post. I've been feeling convicted about fb in the past few weeks. Just last week after talking to a friend I knew that I needed to deactivate my account. And for many reasons like the ones you posted on your blog. I feel that fb is not a good thing for me right now in my life. Maybe one day again but for now I'm ok with not being on. Your post helped me even more to confirm this decision. :-) Thanks again!!

March 21, 2011 at 2:56 PM  
Anonymous Carletta said...

Excellent post! Thank you for the reminder to be as mindful of our online behavior as we are offline.

March 21, 2011 at 3:11 PM  
Blogger Heather's Blog-o-rama said...

Courtney,
What a wonderful post. I'll actually make sure to share this link on my FB page later today :) :) :) You know, Facebook in general has really been on my heart lately. I LOVE Facebook because it allows me to connect with friends that live far away , as wella sfriends that I knew from my time living in Europe. However, lately, I've been feeling that Facebook is stealing away alot of my time...and I don't want to become a woman, especially a Christian woman who uses Facebook as an excuse not to try and connect with people face to face or via a real hanbd-written letter. It's just my own personal thoughts. I've even debated about completely turning off my Facebook account.. I can't speak for anyone else, just for myself and what I feel God really wants for my life. I figure if the friendships are really meant to be, people will take the time to stay in touch with more traditional ways. Well, I think I've babbled too much here. Thanks for the very thoughtful post. Love and hugs from Oregon, Heather :)

March 21, 2011 at 3:35 PM  
Blogger Ashley said...

Amazing! Thanks for posting!

March 21, 2011 at 4:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

1 Timothy 2:12
But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence.

Timothy says you should really just be quiet.

March 21, 2011 at 5:29 PM  
Anonymous Laura said...

Facebook can be an incredible place for ministry too. Not too long ago I got to lead a girl to Christ through facebook chat. Another great opportunity is to use it as a tool to pray through your friends and leave them an encouraging note (ask God what He wants you to affirm them in).

March 21, 2011 at 5:57 PM  
Anonymous Becca said...

Courtney - This is a fantastic post! I love that rule of thumb...no time on Facebook until we've had face-time with God!

March 21, 2011 at 6:24 PM  
Blogger Heather Lynn said...

Thank you so very much for this!!! I so needed this. I do pretty well with the tone of my posts, but I do need to spend my time with God before facebook.

I have been blessed by this today! Thank you!

March 21, 2011 at 6:41 PM  
Blogger Saved by Grace said...

I cannot agree with you more on this issue with FB. I had the same issues and was lead by the Lord to get off of it. It can be used for good and evil, but you have to be very careful what you put on there. We are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses...Hebrews 12. Sometimes we don't think that putting "I'm out having coffee with a friend or I'm going here or there or doing this or that", can't be harmful. It seems innocent enough. But enough to get another persons feelings hurt, get them offended or whatever it maybe. It just leaves to much room open for the enemy to come in. Hence, you have to be so very careful on it. that's just my personal opinion on this. I love the list you gave, what a great filter to use when on it. Thanks for sharing this.

March 21, 2011 at 7:23 PM  
Blogger ~ M ~ said...

Great post!! Love your Blog... feel free to "visit" anytime!
=)

March 21, 2011 at 8:00 PM  
Blogger Ingrid said...

Jealousy, pride and time wasting = I'M GUILTY! FB is like anything else in life, it can be good or bad depending on how you handle it. At a women's conference last year the speaker said,

"To God you should look, before you Facebook!"

I loved that! As far as neighbors FB has actually helped our neighborhood connect better. I have 2 neighborhood pages that I belong to and I have really gotten to know my neighbors. Last Friday, Aimee and Jon (my other Christian neighbors) had a St. Patties party (which they used FB to invite everyone to) and 20+ neighbors showed up. FB is helping us build relationships which ulitmately are for HIS glory! Courtney, I know you know what I mean! I think neighborhood pages are a great idea and tool to getting to know your neighbors.

March 21, 2011 at 8:13 PM  
Blogger Tara B. said...

LOVE this post! I got rid of my FB account for a while for a lot of the reasons you list. I felt so free, and found so much more time for schooling, cleaning, and just spending time with the kids. Then after about three weeks I activated my account again so I could access my homeschool group page and a business page I had, and I have to admit, I am spending WAY TOO much time on there again.

I seem to lack the self control to limit my time, so I may just end up deactivating my account again, sooner, rather than later!

March 21, 2011 at 8:42 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well reading this really got me nodding all the way through. Im a young teenager and have been born again recently and I agree with every single thing that was pointed out in here. I decided a few weeks back, before I saw this blog, to delete most of my pictures cos most of them are lustful to guys, and most of all it didn't reflect my heavenly father.

As a teenage girl, having the access of sneaking into peoples lives, what they do, what they like to do etc... could really become a temptation. I find it that teenagers are more easily influenced through facebook by the worldly people... For this; I have thought that it was ok to take a picture of this and that and have it on my facebook and have a little bit of links like this in here and over there, which really got me thinking it was, okay.
But when I got to know God more and what it means to be more Godly, I was convicted and felt ashamed with how materialistic and idolism I had on my facbook.

Not only that, I couldn't see the difference in me and my unbeliever friends with the things i've liked or joined on my facebook. All of my facebook was filled with worldly things, and the most scary thing of all is; everyone could see them. Like I could see theirs and they saw my sinful heart and not God.

So I decided to delete my facebook and make a new one, cos there was too much, that it would take me months to actually get rid of the things I had in there. My new facebook look so plain compared to my old one, but im more happier cos I could really see the change in me for I know I've left my wordly and sinful life behind and is made a new in my Heavenly Father :)

March 21, 2011 at 8:55 PM  
Blogger Becky @ purposefulhomemaking.com said...

This is a great post. Thanks! A very good reminder! Esp about being w/the Lord b/f FB!

March 21, 2011 at 8:58 PM  
Blogger Jenesa Lyn Niswonger said...

My Sister in Christ -
I found your blog from another blog linked from another blog that I stumbled across this afternoon. I don't believe in coincidences ... this post was a God-given confirmation for me! I deactivated my FB account this past weekend for many of the reasons you listed. I have replaced that time - which is more than I ever realized - with prayer, online sermons, and reading and studying the Word. It has made an immense difference already. Thank you for sharing your heart. I look forward to being a new follower of your blog :)

March 21, 2011 at 10:01 PM  
Anonymous Autumn said...

There is an extension for Google Chrome called StayFocusd (sic) that will limit the amount of time that you can spend on particular sites each day. I've set myself to 10 minutes or so, which is just enough to arrange workouts/lunch dates with my friends or post encouraging words on my husband's wall.

I am thankful that I didn't get too into FB or the games, but I know that there are many other sites out there that I spend way too much time on! The checklist that you posted works well for most places on the internet, not just social sites. :)

March 22, 2011 at 12:51 AM  
Blogger Tara said...

our pastor asked this sunday "does your computer know you are a christian?" good ? i think!

March 22, 2011 at 12:57 AM  
Blogger Tara Cole said...

Great thoughts about facebook, Courtney! Thanks for covering these "hot topics" with such grace!

March 22, 2011 at 1:18 AM  
Blogger Kara said...

Loved this post...
I took a 6 week break from Facebook for many of the reasons you mentioned and others...and it was so good...
Has completely changed the way I'm tentatively re-activating.

March 22, 2011 at 2:24 AM  
Blogger Thoughts for the day said...

Good post. I use my facebook as a form of evangelism because I know some who are my friends are not Believers. I share scripture of the day, I share quotes from well known authors and I tend to challenge the 'reader as I do in my blog' a thought for the day. Sometimes news of my life is there but most times not.
It can be good or not depending on our purpose.

March 22, 2011 at 9:52 AM  
Blogger Becky said...

First time here, I will sure be back. great post. (found you at Challies)

March 22, 2011 at 12:46 PM  
Blogger DWYHomemaking said...

Courtney, thanks for this helpful article. I've linked to you from my blog so my readers can benefit from this as well.

www.dontwasteyourhomemaking.com

March 22, 2011 at 12:48 PM  
Blogger Nena said...

EXCELLENT, EXCELLENT post, Courtney! You hit the nail on the head!!! Even though I get up at 6am to have my devotions, I found the computer calling to me to check my stats and before I knew it, my devotion time was eaten/stolen/given away (to the enemy). So...a while back I made a vow to God that His Word comes first and I would not touch the computer until I had spent time with Him first!!! Love that we are thinking along the same lines!
Hugs, Nena~

March 22, 2011 at 1:00 PM  
Blogger Holly @SurvivingOnAShoestring said...

I just wanted to say thanks for your previous post on facebook. I felt moved to go and make sure I had beneficial healthy "friendships" on there. I cut out over half of the friends for a variety of reasons and now when I get on I feel a freedom that the people on there are people I care about. My news feed is actual relevant instead of things I'd rather not see! It's a breath of fresh air. And yano what? I hardly get on because there isn't THAT much new news with less than 200 friends on there!

Anyway thanks for your encouragement!

March 22, 2011 at 2:03 PM  
Blogger Kim said...

Great post, Courtney! Thanks for the reminders :)

March 22, 2011 at 3:14 PM  
Blogger Debbie said...

Great advice! Thanks. Even though they have access to my school email, my students prefer to get with me on Facebook with questions about assignments, etc. Their parents usually access me the same way:)

March 22, 2011 at 7:43 PM  
Blogger amy said...

Another great post, Courtney.
God led me to delete my FB account almost a year ago.

Not only did I spend WAY too much time on it, neglecting my home and family, but I also experienced some of the things you mentioned...especially feeling envious of others (things they would post about, bragging) and if I saw where a couple of my friends were commenting about doing stuff together (without me) I got very jealous. Bottom line, it got to a point where FB created more negative feelings/responses in me than positive.
At first I felt very disconnected and "weird" about not being on there because it seems everyone else is, but I can honestly say that some of my best "quiet times"/fellowship with God have happened as a result of my dumping that addiction. I've said many times that Facebook was like cotton balls in my ears because it kept me from hearing God.

March 22, 2011 at 8:51 PM  
Blogger Amy D said...

I am another one of those "I deleted my FB account" women. On one hand, I hate it, because I am missing out on 2 women in particular that frequent FB a lot. They are not Christians and I really had an "in" with them.

But... I just couldn't do it anymore. So many of your questions ^^^, I said "yes, yes, yep, oh yeah, me too".

One of those women? She racked her brains to remember my blog name and come "visit" me.

For now, I am okay with no Facebook and am seeing even more spiritual dangers with it.

March 22, 2011 at 11:27 PM  
Blogger mommadillard said...

My husband and I sat down to figure out what we would give up for Lent on Ash Wednesday and we both decided that 1) We would give up going out to eat because we were doing it alittle too much and we wanted to spend time with our two daughters making dinners that we could all help with and enjoy and 2) We would give up our Facebook accounts for Lent. We have found that since we have done that we do not have all the "drama" that we had before and we actually have been spendin more time together as a whole family going for walks, playing games, watching movies and just hanging out. We have had family members call to "check on us" because our facebook pages were deleted. We realized that no one ever called to check on us before because they were reading it on Facebook. We have gone back and forth about creating a page for the family, but we still have a few weeks of Lent left so we are gonna enjoy NOT having it and focus on what is really important----GOD and Family!!!

March 23, 2011 at 12:39 AM  
Blogger sunshinemama said...

"And a good rule of thumb to follow is - no Facebook until you've read THE BOOK and have had some face to face time with your Heavenly Father. You will need to be saturated in his truth to handle the onslaught of temptation and ministry that is presented to you everyday on Facebook."

This is a very refreshing rule of thumb and I am going to work on this! Thank you, very good post!!

March 25, 2011 at 1:25 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for touching on this subject Courtney. Listening to everyones feeling made me feel like I wasn't crazy for not liking FB like I thought I should!

March 26, 2011 at 8:33 AM  
Blogger Lori said...

Thank you Courtney! I was sent over from LouAnne at Life Homemade (http://momidaze.blogspot.com/2011/03/tuesday-morning.html) and am glad I was. I was attacked on FB today and really thinking: What is the point? With so many social networking sites, is it really in my best interest to put myself out there? And, better yet... what about the kids of today? How can we raise them to know the filter for their own self esteem. I actually wrote a post about it.
Thank you for yours... it is certainly eye opening.

March 30, 2011 at 1:53 AM  

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