Saw a snide comment today on Twitter about how “all people who aren’t talking about Ferguson are contributing to the problem” and it enraged me. Enraged me to the point that I am having to do something I expressly don’t want to do, which is engage on social media about this.
There is a lot of horrible stuff going on the world right now. Ferguson, Irag, Ukraine, two Amish girls kidnapped from my old stomping grounds (thankfully they are now back home with their parents, but the media is still exploiting their story for all it’s worth), a group of kids and adults, short-term missionaries from the North Shore here brutally attacked on their way to the airport after completing a week of working overseas, atrocities still committed regularly in Nigeria …
It’s horrible. The world presses in heavily. And I don’t see that Twittering about it is going to make it any better.
If it comforts you to express your thoughts and emotions in 140 characters, by all means, do so. I can’t. I have tried to do so in the past, and it leaves me feeling more frustrated and helpless than before.
Instead, I am praying. Lord, have mercy. It’s a lot less than 140 characters, but it’s going straight to the throne of grace instead of getting lost in a sea of banality and empty outrage on the internet. Lord, have mercy.
I am acting. I am sharing food from our garden with our neighbors. I am reading to my children and giving them hugs. I am speaking words of encouragement and love to those I see.
I am living. Living as though life is worth something. Living with joy, because that is so much more powerful than shouting in anger.
I am creating. Making art, making music, writing stories. Because the act of creation trumps acts of destruction any day of the week.
Hatred doesn’t fix hatred. Darkness cannot defeat darkness. Only light can defeat the darkness. And for me, personally, spouting off on Twitter or Facebook is not contributing to the light in this world.
So, angry person on Twitter criticizing people you don’t even know, sweeping everyone under one comprehensive judgement: I understand, because there have been times when I have felt that other people’s silence equaled a lack of care. I hope I know better now, and understand that sometimes silence means a person cares too deeply to be able to say anything at all.
Sometimes it isn’t that something isn’t important enough to be tweeted. It’s that it is too important for such a useless exercise.