In Death We Are One – 2/4/13

This was the first post I ever did.  I still feel the same way.

I have become increasingly sick of social media.  I spend more time disliking my “friends” because of the things they post than I do actually getting to know them. Why are we all so intent on sensationalizing things?  Why is the Us vs. Them mentality so prevalent in our culture?  Why do we allow ourselves to be manipulated into maintaining this idea that in order to be right someone else must be wrong?

I am one of those rare people that researches the validity of things other people post.  So when I heard about former NYC Mayor Ed Koch being buried at Trinity Wall Street, I did my research. Koch has said that his Jewish faith is very important to him, so I wondered why he would want to be buried at an Episcopal Church.  The answer has more to do with staying in Manhattan than anything else, but I read something that current Mayor Michael Bloomberg said at his funeral that really got me thinking.  Bloomberg said, “Just think about it: a Polish Jew in an Episcopal graveyard in a largely Dominican neighborhood. What could be more New York — or even more Ed Koch?” I will add what could be more like heaven?

This idea got me thinking about what cemeteries can teach the living.  The notion of people from all walks of life and religious backgrounds being placed, purposefully, for their bodies to spend eternity together is an amazing thing and what I know heaven will look like.  This seems to be the exact opposite notion of what I get from social media. The heaven I imagine when I read my news feed on Facebook will be angry, frustrated, segregated, and lonely.  That heaven reminds me that there is not another person on the planet that agrees with me on everything.  That should be something to celebrate, but time after time it makes me scared and sad.

Fear is one of the leading causes of isolation and social isolation can be harmful to our overall health.  The culture of fear is becoming more powerful and our ability as Christians to fight that culture is becoming more difficult.  We are called in Romans 12:2 “to be not conformed of this world” and that is a tough calling to follow.  How do we as Christians turn the tide on this culture of fear?   How do we find ways to be in the world but not of it?  How do we influence those around us to look for commonalities in each other?

My answer – I will intentionally decide to spend eternity with people from all walks of life and religious backgrounds.  I will force myself into difficult and uncomfortable relationships with people whose ideals scare me.  I will seek out the commonalities in people instead of isolating myself from them. I am determined to make my life look more like a cemetery, and that is a really weird thing to say 🙂

Leave me a note and let me know what you will do to answer that call.

-Lauren Caldwell

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4 responses to “In Death We Are One – 2/4/13

  1. Love it!

    Through entering my OT profession, I have gotten to know a wide array of people from different ethnic and cultural backgrounds.

    Personally, I have known some people who are “neat freaks” in social media profiles because they are aware that what they post (or their friends post) can affect how others perceive them professionally. What they are doing is a positive trait, don’t get me wrong… and I have been keeping my social media profiles a lot cleaner than years past because of my professional image sake. However, I also believe that people should show some of their individualities, too. Personally, I want to know who each of my professional colleagues are as people, too. Yes, that might bring a bit of “mess”. But I think it’s a good “mess”.

    I will like to end with a quote from a Joy Williams song called We- “We are not that different from each other. We just want somebody to discover who we really are when we drop our guard. That love has gotta start with you and me.”

    • I agree Bill. I love getting to know people through their views and the things that are important to me. I mean, I am not very quiet with my thoughts so how can I ask others to be 🙂 My main gripes when I wrote this were the fact that

      – people repost things that aren’t true and are hurtful like how President Obama eats little children for breakfast or science shows that all gay people are pedophiles. I made those up but you get my point. I just want people to verify the truth in things before they repost so that they aren’t creating a mob type hatred for people that don’t deserve it.

      – also it teaches me things about people that I love and respect that make me sick to my stomach. People using the N-word to describe our President, going to specific places BECAUSE they give money to hate groups and stating how happy they are to do it, saying that gay people – illegal immigrants – women are less than human, comparing people to Nazi’s when the situation is nothing like WWII Germany, and many more. It makes me lose all respect for them and that is painful.

      I just wish that people would use social media to spread love and not hatred but more often than not it is for hatred or sensationalism. Great quote by the way!

  2. I like your wish, Lauren. I also wish that people don’t use their unfriend/unfollow/block privileges so quickly on their social media friends. After all, we are bound to make social media blunders from time to time. A better way is to communicate and forgive.

    • I am guilty of the block thing sometimes. If you have really upset me more than a handful of times then I just prefer not to see your stuff. Sometimes it is the only way I can still respect someone. I do think there are plenty of people that use it too quickly though.

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