It’s pretty simple. . . the mantra for identity these days, that is. It goes like this: I am what I look like and what other people think of what I look like. Its for that reason that I’m glad I’m not growing up in today’s world. I’m not sure how I would have handled it. . . all the pressure that increases exponentially the more and more time we spend on social media.
In today’s world, not only do our kids have to navigate the 4,000 to 10,000 marketing messages they see everyday. . . many selling unrealistic body image standards along with products. . . but they have to trudge through the constant barrage of fabricated, curated, and promoted selfies posted by their peers. . . and yes, even their parents and youth pastors.
As I was thinking about this reality this morning. . . triggered by a host of selfies I spotted on social media. . . I thought back to something I had written way back in 2001. Hardly seems that long ago. But when I consider that 17 years have passed and 11 of those years have included the ever-present smartphone, what I had written then is, sadly, more appropriate now than it was back then.
Give it a read. Then, think about 1) how you might be shaped by these pressures, 2) how you might be functionally shaping others by contributing to the pressures, and 3) what you are doing to consciously rewrite this narrative to promote biblical norms as opposed to cultural norms.
Here’s what I wrote back in 2001. . .read more.