Digital trail or Digital Trouble


Our social media platforms are being inundated with younger and younger individuals sharing an almost predictable type of posts:

  • Staged, altered, or faked “selfie” posts;
  • Personal self-care routines, how to’s, or “story time” (put your finger down if you have ___ posts;
  • Pure stupidity posts;
  • Self-elevating posts.

Nearly 80% of Generation Alfa (those who were born between 2010 and 2025) have access to an iPad (or equivalent). It seems that each new generation of young people aren’t just placed in front of screens at an earlier and earlier time, but they are actually being unleashed in the world of social media at a younger and younger age. These younger generations aren’t just engaging in social media as CONSUMERS (social media is viewed as a “pacifier,” as an entertainer, or as an educational aid); they’re engaging in social media as CONTRIBUTORS (producers and influencers). Many have already begun to refer to the lifetime of Generation Alpha as “The Great Screen Age.”

Today, young and old alike are being pressured to buy into the drug of choice – fame and popularity. For many, our social media feed is really nothing more than an attempt to either FIT IN or to STAND OUT. The result: a false sense of IDENTITY, a false of INCLUSION, and a false sense of HOPE.

The “social media lifestyle” has become…

1)  One that is OVER-PRIMPED

Everybody is trying to make themselves look better than they really are. This includes posts that have been deemed looksmaxxing (attempting to create the most handsome, or pretty version of ourself that we can through grooming habits, through healthy diets, through workout plans) and practices that include the use of green screens, of AI generations and/or alterations, and/or things like mewing (the forced realignment of the jaw by placing the bottom teeth slightly behind the top teeth, and covering the roof of the mouth with the tongue with the tip of the tongue resting just behind the front teeth like when you say a word that ends in -ing. It can cause the misalignment of teeth and of the upper and lower jaw, causing TMJ like pain and causing the jaw to dysfunction).

2)  One that is OVER-POPULAR

We used to dream about things that were out of this world and things that seemed impossible. These were desires that set many on a path to bringing those dreams into reality. Today’s younger generations are spending more and more time following and fawning over individuals that are going viral and/or they are doing whatever it takes to get themselves to go “viral.” They live for POPULARITY, not for PRODUCTIVITY. Think get rich quick.

3)  One that is OVER-POSTING

Simply put, we post too much information about ourselves for the entire world to find. There are entire algorithms that are designed to create a digital footprint of your likes, your wants, and your preferences to present you with products that fit your desires and to pair you with “like-minded individuals.”

What we need to understand is that our use of social media (especially when we are younger in what has been described as our “young and dumb ages”) leaves behind us a TRAIL that can be and that is more and more being used against us. Today’s news media, self-proclaimed influences, and businesses are scouring a person’s social media presence (both now and in the past) to “find out who we are,” to see if we qualify for a certain position, to attack us or to fire us.

When we immortalize certain parts and choices of our life (things that display a sense of immaturity, negativity, or simply bad decisions), they have the potential of defining who we are and limiting what we are capable of doing.

We honor ourselves when we think carefully about who we entrust with certain parts of ourselves and our lives. Jesus Himself left us an example of this with how He walked alongside His own inner circle of disciples. His deepest heart was not fully revealed to everyone He met, and while some relationships were more intimate than others, His offering of redemption was still extended to all who would take it.

2 Corinthians 1:11-14 says, “Ye also helping together by prayer for us, that for the gift bestowed upon us by the means of many persons thanks may be given by many on our behalf. For our rejoicing is this, the testimony of our conscience, that in simplicity and godly sincerity, not with fleshly wisdom, but by the grace of God, we have had our conversation in the world, and more abundantly to you-ward. For we write none other things unto you, than what ye read or acknowledge; and I trust ye shall acknowledge even to the end; As also ye have acknowledged us in part, that we are your rejoicing, even as ye also are ours in the day of the Lord Jesus.
Philippians 1:27 says, “Only let your conversation be as it becometh the gospel of Christ: that whether I come and see you, or else be absent, I may hear of your affairs, that ye stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel.” 
James 3:13 says, “Who is a wise man and endued with knowledge among you? let him shew out of a good conversation his works with meekness of wisdom.” 
1 Peter 1:15-16 says, “But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.
1 Peter 2:12 says, “Having your conversation honest among the Gentiles: that, whereas they speak against you as evildoers, they may by your good works, which they shall behold, glorify God in the day of visitation.
2 Peter 3:11 says, “Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness.

While it is indeed possible to overcome a difficult past, the reality is that it isn’t always easy. The Apostle Paul understood this problem all too well.

Galatians 1:13-18 says, “For ye have heard of my conversation in time past in the Jews' religion, how that beyond measure I persecuted the church of God, and wasted it: And profited in the Jews' religion above many my equals in mine own nation, being more exceedingly zealous of the traditions of my fathers. But when it pleased God, who separated me from my mother's womb, and called me by his grace, To reveal his Son in me, that I might preach him among the heathen; immediately I conferred not with flesh and blood: Neither went I up to Jerusalem to them which were apostles before me; but I went into Arabia, and returned again unto Damascus. Then after three years I went up to Jerusalem to see Peter, and abode with him fifteen days.

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