Some time a few months ago, I received an email saying I’d been picked for the social media launch team for Jefferson Bethke’s new book, “It’s Not What You Think.” I’m telling you this for one purpose. I want to be transparent with you so you know that I did receive the book from Thomas Nelson publishers…BUT! I had already ordered my copy from Amazon, so this review/blog series was coming out either way! Now, lucky you, you get to read it sooner 🙂
If you’ve read my blog with even a minimal following you’ll notice I reference Jefferson Bethke’s work on the regular. I’ve featured one of his videos here in a previous post. By no means is that my favorite video of his, but it is definitely up there. There’s info about him at that link, if you’re curious.
This review is Part 1 of a new blog series called “Be Still.” The purpose here is to review Bethke’s book in a more detailed way. Part 1: BE SOCIAL
Be Social- (Chapter 3: People Aren’t What You Think)
Chapter 3 is all about intimacy between God and people. It’s about stepping out of our box and being present in the relationships in our lives.
One of my favorite quotes from this chapter is “If you’re in a season struggling to identify God’s voice, ask which voice is calling you out of hiding and into intimacy.” Bethke emphasizes we hear so many different voices in our lives and in the chaos we strain to pick out which one we should listen to in order to find out identity. With the endless distractions around us, tuning into God’s voice in the midst of the craziness has become a massive issue in our cellphone-glued-to-hand generation. Why is our cellphone always in our hand? Jeff takes the time to explain some of the reasons why we drown out silence by constantly being on our cellphones. (You’ll have to read the book, I’m not giving away everything here!) Since God speaks to us in times of silence, it can be so difficult to pick up on His whispers in our life if we aren’t intentional about creating God-space in our lives.
While Jeff offers a wealth of deeper information in this chapter, the part that stuck out to me the most was the part about putting down our cellphones in the interest of having more face-to-face intimacy in our lives.
Why did this chapter jump out to me personally? I’m a social media manager for my church. My ministry is to meet people in the distracted space where they are hiding behind their cellphone screen and redirect their thoughts back to God. The point of social media ministry is to meet people in the midst of their mess and stick a big reminder in their face that God loves them…and to put down their phones. On the other hand, sharing Christian content has a way of squeaking into my non-Christian friends news feed, which hooray for that, right?!
So what’s to be said about putting down our phones and being present in the moment? I think it’s about balance. I don’t want to give away too much about the book, but this chapter was definitely a good reminder about how technology can hinder our real life relationships. Be social…..but not JUST on facebook. Can you challenge yourself to call one person this week? Make that one phone call that you’ve been meaning to make.