I’m immersed in social media.
I have an Instagram, a Twitter, a Facebook, a Facebook page, a website with a personal blog, and a Youtube channel. Through these channels, I share the highlights of my life, I share my opinions, experiences and encouragement. In order to be a successful Youtuber and blogger for the Lord, I’ve found myself studying how other women in the world appeal to the masses.
I see lifestyle gurus on Youtube, models on Instagram, and super-mommies in the blogging world. I see their “morning routine” videos that, in contrast to my “morning routine” of making sure I shower before 5pm, make me look like a sack of potatoes. I see the designer shoes, the makeup collection that changes with the season and the astronomical waist-to-hip ratios.
I’ve felt the pressure to appear perfect in order to appeal to other women.It seems that every woman who’s making any kind of statement in popular culture looks perfect.
Should I need to fit this mold in order to reach women for Christ? I don’t think so. And I don’t think you should have to look perfect to reach others, either. Here are some reasons why:
When You Look Perfect, You’re Not Relatable
I believe that we’re over-saturated with images of perfection in the secular arena. I don’t know about you, but I stopped watching videos on Youtube that have far too much production value and are just flat out fake.
It’s cute that you can film such a perfect workout regiment, get ready with me, morning routine, night routine, fall look book, what I eat in a day, what’s in my bag, and all of those other “look at my perfect life” videos. But I’m choking on the idea that you’re literally that perfect. In fact, I’m calling bluff. And more and more people in the secular social-media space are looking toward the more candid Vlogs, tweets, status updates and images of everyday life.
No one buys the idea of perfection anymore, because the new innovations in social media are making the perfect and the famous seem more and more like real people.
There’s a shift that happening all throughout Christian culture, too. Where we once craved celebrity preachers, we now crave authentic disciples. We’ve moved from gawking over people’s perfection on interviews and speaking engagements to wanting to see their day-to-day life. We don’t want to be preached to about kindness and love unless from what we can see, you’re living it out at home. Our generation is over blanket statements and the glory of the seeming super-holy.
We’ve seen those people fall far too many times. We want to see real, authentic faith.Worldly models of womanhood often need to be distanced from the average and ordinary woman in order for them to be important enough to follow. The further away from average and ordinary, the better.
Even though that’s taking place in the secular world, if in the Christian space you try and achieve the same level of untouchable, no one who wants a genuine relationship with Christ is going to give a rat’s tail about what you have to say. You’ll attract the type of people who are more interested in being like YOU than being like Christ.
Christian women are looking for other women who have the same struggles that they do. They are inspired by the least of these. I’ve found that the more candid and authentic I am, the more people I help. I don’t need to look expensive to make an impact, and neither do you.
When You Promote Vanity, You’re Promoting a Different Gospel
The prosperity gospel and the actual gospel are in competition these days. Only one of them has the power to save. If you’re far above being seen in the same outfit twice on Instagram, ask yourself why.
Do you want to promote the idea that when you’re a woman of God, you end up having so many nice things that you never duplicate outfits, or would your rather promote the idea that what you wear is of no consequence because, “isn’t the body more than clothes?” (Matthew 6:25) With our actions, we never want to promote the idea that giving your life to Christ will make you find your Boaz, will make you lose 20 pounds, will make you rich and famous or will make you #BLESSED.
With our actions, we want to promote the truth that surrendering our lives to Christ will free us from the yoke of slavery, bondage and oppression. We must promote the truth that bowing before the King will save us from death, fear and eternal damnation. Because that is, after all, the gospel of Jesus Christ.
I’m not saying that having wealth, being beautiful or achieving success are wrong. I’m also not saying that displays of wealth, beauty or success are wrong.
To some degree, we all want to display our best selves on social media. That’s not a sin.
What I am saying is that you don’t need to look perfect in order to be used by God. Don’t try to be something that you’re not in order to appeal the people for the gospel of Christ.
Our generation is looking for people who are real, who are authentic, and who are willing to put themselves out there regardless of their tax bracket or OOTD.
Keep ministering to others by continuing to be yourself. Even your best self! As long as it’s your authentic self. Don’t shy away from using social media to glorify God because you don’t look or feel perfect. It’s not about you!