By: Tekoa Manning
A few months ago, I took the first steps, like a crack addict or an alcoholic breathing in a bag, I admitted I was addicted to Facebook. A couple days ago I hit delete and let the DT’s begin.
I started realizing that I was carrying my phone with me like I would a 3-month-old baby and not getting much accomplished with my writing.
I’d scroll through Facebook while I drank my coffee in the morning. I’d scroll while my husband drove me to my doctor appointment. No need to look out the window, that’s too boring, right? If the conversation at dinner or even an outing hit a lull I’d see what the latest update was.
I read blogs, researched doctrines, studied history, and opened Wikipedia. I learned about racial tension, global warming, corrupt politicians, digestion tips, natural medicine, and church decline in America. I had a wealth of information at my fingertips and yes my brain was rapidly eating and absorbing, but what about my spirit man?
So the other day, while I was fed-up with yet another political rant and even more so with my addictive behavior. I disconnected my Facebook. It felt so liberating, that I swiftly went to work removing over 500 people from my Twitter account. My husband shook his head. “Why would you do that honey, aren’t you supposed to be getting people to follow you, by following them? Don’t you want to sell books? ”
But you see, I don’t care anymore if they follow me or I follow them. What does “follow” mean? It’s when one has a body of supporters or admirers. If the whole world admires me and yet, the Lord Adonai does not know me, what have I gained?
If I follow HIM, the One who Created it all, He will lead me and guide me where I am supposed to be. He created men and gave them gifts. How do I know this?
“See, I have called by name Bezalel, the son of Uri, the son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah. I have filled him with the Spirit of God in wisdom, in understanding, in knowledge, and in all kinds of craftsmanship, to make artistic designs for work in gold, in silver, and in bronze, and in the cutting of stones for settings, and in the carving of wood, that he may work in all kinds of craftsmanship.” -Exodus 31:3-5
These men did not have to get a few thousand Twitter followers or Facebook friends to do what they were BORN to do. No. All they had to do was wait for their gift to make room for them.
Why would over fifty people in one day, take the time to copy and send me a letter they’ve drawn up and ask me to “Please follow them on Twitter?” Like them on Facebook, follow their blog, follow their podcast, and follow their book, film, movie, brand, product, politician, and ministry? Why? Because of our obsession with becoming known, famous, liked, wealthy, understood, and so forth. Jesus-Yeshua healed a man who didn’t even know his name or who he was, “But the man who was healed did not know who it was, for Jesus had slipped away while there was a crowd in that place.” John 5:13.
I want to slip away and work on my spirit man, not my flesh man. My spirit man needs meditation, drinking in the earth, and the beauty of the Creators artwork. My spirit needs to help make things better without having to advertise who I helped, or how I helped, or what I did. My spirit needs to take the time to connect with my sons, my family, and my community instead of a Meme, an empty text stating my political or religious belief. My spirit needs to talk to my Maker and actually LISTEN and wait for Him to speak back. My spirit needs rain and humbleness and joy. Becoming the next famous author could be the biggest curse to ever fall on me or my seed.
The things and people we spend our time on tell us a lot about who we are and who we want to impress. Yes, your gift may be your voice, your words, or the creative shark brand you’re selling, but could it transpire behind the scenes?
I once had a dream that someone very important was coming to one of my book events. The dream was so real I told my husband about it. I even asked him if he thought the dream was prophetic. I pondered the possibility that there would be an agent there, or a publisher or even my all-time dream of meeting a producer who wanted to make my novel into a movie! I remember waiting and watching the people who showed up. I secretly told a friend about my dream, as she and her husband have a similar desire to see their novel on the big screen.
I had surgery a week or so prior to the book signing. During the event, I was in my motorized scooter, weak, fatigued and feeling like death. That evening at the restaurant /lounge area, I met a broken soul who was ready and prepared to take his life the next day. Only thing was I had no idea. I was able to listen to him and his stories, pray with him and share a laugh or two. I was able to learn from him and he was able to learn from me. We both cried tears. We prayed aloud at a bar table. I held his hand and he held mine, my husband’s hands placed over the top of ours. The next day I was sent a long email about the plans he had for the day… plans to take his own life. He said he felt better now. He felt ready to tackle some things, change some things, and move forward. He said he felt something as we prayed that he couldn’t describe with words.
I cried reading his letter because it gave me hope. My physical body was broken but my spirit met his spirit and we made a connection and The Father’s Holy breath blew through the room- His Spirit. I shared the experience with the same friend I mentioned above. She said, “But you knew someone important was coming!” YES, Someone IMPORTANT had shown up at my event and I’ll take that over fame and fortune every day of the week!
This is what matters. It’s not how many likes we get, how many times a week we sit on a church pew, or whether we know the difference between Easter and Ishtar. Yes, it helps to be taught right truths, but it helps more to be a person who does Torah, not just knows what it is. James 1:22 says, “But prove yourselves doers of the word and not merely hearers who delude themselves.” Our self-importance can delude us into thinking we are important, intelligent, right, biblically sound, politically correct, and need to help people who are not quite as smart as us by posting our meme’s, our views, and our truths. Our self-importance can delude us into thinking that our relationship with Him is just fine.
Is it easier for a person like me, who has autoimmune disorders to minister from my phone or my PC? Yes, but there is something called sunlight, human touch, nature, ministering, and balance. Yeshua told Martha that she was busy doing many things, but that Mary had chosen something better. What was that? She was sitting at His feet, drinking in His wisdom and restoring her soul. Good Shepherds lead their sheep to water and feed them good food. Follow Him and His voice for it will surely drown out the silence and bring more joy than any meme ever could. Because meme is sort of like “I” phone, it’s about “me” “ME”…Yes, and you and I can still have an online presence and be in His presence. Balance my friends, balance.
Photo Cred: Roberto Nickson
Tekoa Manning is the author of two fiction works, Polishing Jade & Walter the Homeless Man. After a neurological illness left her disabled and eventually homeless, Tekoa began to channel her creativity into writing and devouring the Word of Yahweh. She is the wife of a retired police chief and the mother of three sons. Tekoa and her husband reside in a small town in KY. The pen name Tekoa means Trumpet, the instrument that unites people at a sudden impulse.
You can find out more about Tekoa and her writing endeavors at tekoamanning.com