Applause of Man
How can you believe, when you receive glory from one another and do not seek the glory that comes from the only God? (John 5:44)
For they loved the glory that comes from man more than the glory that comes from God. (John 12:43)
It’s safe to say we’ve all been guilty of treasuring the applause of man at some point. Personally, God has proved to me that I’m guilty. Today, social media beckons people the most. We can sure seek the glory that comes from one another offline, but I’m betting the majority of you think about social media more when you think about fame or popularity.
We value social media too much. Retweets, likes, and little hearts get us more excited than does caring for a widow. If we went and cared for a widow, we’d probably post about it. Do you see what I’m trying to say?
Why? Because retweets, like, and little hearts are like little high-fives. They say, “yes, bro!” It can mold into short-term affirmation or acceptance that we should get from God first.
I’m heartbroken. How conceited we can remain with social media crowding its way into everything in every place. It can be so great for connecting with others from any place, but it can also feed our ego and distract us from better things. Some of you are able, through testing, to use social media for/to the glory of God, but most cannot.
God has been shifting my thinking. I believe he’s been sanctifying me in a particular way that I feel compelled to share with you. I believe God has been wanting me to invest more of my time, focus, and energy locally (people in my town).
Prior to these thoughts I’m having, I used to see it this way—50, 50. Half of my focus and investment should be spent on engaging people in my town while the other half is spent online. But now I see it this way—90, 10. Ninety percent of my efforts are to be spent on people in my town, and ten percent online. These aren’t precise percentages, but generally speaking.
Maybe this is my personal calling. Maybe God has been shaping your thoughts similar to mine, or not. Despite what I share God telling me to do, “let each person lead the life that the Lord has assigned to him,” (1 Cor. 7:17). Don’t let my words take you away from what God has called you to do, or where to be. But I still would love your encouragement as I keep sharing.
I want to paint a picture for you. Imagine a spectrum. Title the left side, “hide”; title the right side, “pride.” The people pleasers, who get distracted from God, placing their focus on what other people think are on the left. These people let the opinions of man dictate their speech, actions, and beliefs in a way that hides in a crowd. On the other side of the spectrum are the self-seeking/self-promoting folk (more like myself) that post great thoughts, truth, and stuff so that they may be applauded. Still focused on man’s opinions, their speech, actions, and beliefs are corrupt at its motivation.
Where do you gravitate? Does one side seem more familiar to you than the other? A better question might be: How does mankind best distract you from God?
In the things you do and say online: What is the motivation? Why are you posting the things you post? Why do you do what you do?
What if my motivation has been wrong? I’m certainly going to repent of the wrong one. What if all I need is God with me? What if we don’t seek retweets, likes, and little hearts? What if we sought to hear God and connect with him in the Bible above all else?
May it all be to please God, rather than the applause of man. Jesus is enough—Jesus is better.
Being intimate with God is all we really need. I ask need to really ask myself, “Is he enough for me?” Rest assured, if I never posted online again, I’d still have God, and my eternal destiny would remain the same.
To sort of conclude this post, I’m certainly not planning on going rogue. Twitter, IG, YouTube, and even my own site here are platforms I plan on continuing to utilize. These things I believe God has been speaking to me have helped to keep me grounded and focused on my relationship with Jesus instead of getting too amp’d up for social notifications.
I hope this paints a clear view for you, so that you can remain grounded instead of desiring what you shouldn’t be desiring—the applause of man.