Saturday, February 20, 2010

Facebook Friday Fast - The Update

Well, the first official session of the 2010 Lenten "Facebook Friday Fast" is over - only six more "sessions" to go.

This week (9 p.m. Feb. 18 to 9 a.m. Feb. 20) was the first "official" Friday for my "Facebook Friday Fast," but it was the third Friday I attempted to fast from Facebook (I tried to do it the two previous weekends to "build up" my endurance, and well, to work out any bugs in the system before the youth girls attempted it.)

I guess, I'm finding that it's hard to stay off-line for any length of time. Maybe I'm addicted to technology (yes, more than one of my parents at church have "jokingly" mentioned this....) than I realized.

I use it for work - in both the children's and communications ministry at church - and I use it at home - as I strive to build up my freelance writing career (right now that includes one digital e-zine magazine, one youth devotional magazine and three book Christian book publicists, as well as working with several digital scrapbooking designers.)

So, while I was off Facebook yesterday for the fast, I did spend at least 4-5 hours last night working on two future book reviews for my blog - and a freelance writing assignment for the digital scrapbooking magazine. So technically, despite my efforts, while I did fast from Facebook, I was on the computer A LOT last night.

Through all of this, I'm trying really hard to be a good example for the youth I work with....and it's not working so hot right now. .... I guess I didn't realize how "addicted" or "reliant" on technology I am.

I'm impressed that one of the girls has decided to extend her "fast" from Friday to all weekdays during Lent. I want to hear more about her experience and well, the other girls who are taking part in the fast from social media.

In my own world, I'm not sure what God's trying to tell me. That's the honest truth.

Maybe this is the case of the guy in the flood, sitting on his roof waiting for help (and turning down every offer because it didn't look like God), but I'm not sure what I need to do yet.

I think God is using this Lent to have me re-focus priorities....I realize when I can't even sign off for a full day - that I may be juggling way too much at work and at home.

A friend posted that "the season of Lent is about clearing a personal path for Jesus along the road to the cross."

That's why I'm doing this - it's not for show, or to have people say "good job" - but it's to figure out who I am, today in 2010, and figure out the next stage of my faith journey.

Because I feel like the best way to live is to live transparently, I am sharing the struggles and this journey on the blog  - and again, because I opened my mouth and now I'm putting my "money where my mouth is."

Honestly, giving up soda last Lent may have been

So, some things I've learned in the first fasting day and two trial runs....

1) It's harder to ignore the e-mails that FB sends to my gmail account than I initially thought.
I only get email messages in three cases - someone sends me a direct message, someone replies to one of my posts, or someone replies to a post I commented on.

The first week, I literally got the shakes as I ignored those e-mails. Yesterday, I slipped and read them, without thinking - because it was "just another e-mail" in my box. After the first slip, it was "easier" to keep reading them.

(In my rationalizing nature, one was from a seminary friend who rarely e-mails me, and I was worried that something had happened to a mutual friend - yes rationalization 101.

2) Appearance is everything.
My blog feeds automatically into my Facebook account - it's a marketing tool I use for the publicists I review books I can say they get double the exposure - several people have jokingly questioned if this breaks my fast - even me even being signed in.

Two "twitter" posts that I made before logging out Thursday night showed up as my Facebook status' AFTER I had already begun my fast. So again, technology was not my friend this weekend. It gave me the appearance of saying one thing, but doing another.

3) Twittering Does CountLast Friday, I realized I did not "log" off FB until Friday morning. So I "twittered" my status, just to make sure people knew what was up.

Two members of my loving family (who hare watching very closely) called me to remind me that even though I was not on Facebook, twittering to my Facebook broke the fast.

4) iPhone Stumbling BlockI've also figured out that I need to move the Facbook icon off of my "home" page on my phone, and have it be "hidden" several pages in on my phone. This keeps me from automatically "logging in" to Facebook when I'm not thinking, just reacting.

I'll keep you posted on how this goes - and how the girls experiences went.

Want to read the post that started it all????

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