*LIKES*

“The spotlight that’s on you will kill you if it is stronger than the light that is within you. Be in the world, not of it.”

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Social media has become a huge part of our culture. I think back to when AOL instant messenger was a big deal, now everything is instant- Instagram, Facebook, Snapchat, Google. Frequent posting is the norm, and it is quickly becoming a way of measuring your status in society based on the number of followers or “likes”  you have compared to others.

This was brought up last week in discussion at small group when a young girl admitted that she often feels a desire to obtain more likes on Instagram photos, but then said she didn’t know why. I think all of us in the room related in some way.

For those of us sharing our journey with the world through social media…why are we doing it? What is your why? Are you only posting to get a certain number of likes to feel significant, popular, and literally liked?

Young men and women have made it the norm to post pictures that are sexual in nature in order to get more attention and more followers. I had to remove a friend from Instagram who posted a topless photo covering herself with her hands in underwear with the caption, “Let’s be honest. I’m posting this to get to 25,000 followers.” What does having 25,000 followers do for you, and what are you doing for them?! That means that 25,000 people follow that individual who constantly posts inappropriate pictures for the wrong reasons, ultimately falling to the tasteless trend to post similar photos.

If the morals and ethics inside you are fading and you find yourself leaning towards following the crowd in this trend, I challenge you to find validation and recognition in other ways. For the young men and women reading this- I hope that you can find your purpose and your why. You have such a greater purpose in life than to share your body that was only intended to be shared in private, not for the whole world to see and judge.

You are the light you bring to a room. You are the happiness you bring to a friend feeling down. You are your God-given talent. You are beautiful and strong in your own unique way. Your honesty is the truth someone needs to hear and the good news in their day. You are what you repeatedly do and say. You are unique and diverse. You are capable of becoming whatever you want to be while helping others do the same. You are alive and well. You are living in this moment, and you are more than the number of followers, friends and likes you receive.

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