I have several friends on Facebook who flood my Facebook news feed on a daily bases with variations of posts like: “If you believe in God” and “If you believe God is good” or “If you’re not ashamed of Jesus” type “Amen”. Sometimes they come with the good old chain letter promising visits by angels, answered prayers, wealth or the miraculous healing of a terminal disease. Or sometimes it’s just asking for affirmation. These posts bother me, beyond the obvious surface level spam. Such kind of blatant spiritual and emotional blackmail really works me up because it serves no real purpose.
There is nothing religious about typing “Amen” in social media, and being naive to think it might somehow help some child that has cancer half-way across the world is laughable. Maybe it is just the Atheist in me who wants to remove my eyes with a rusty spoon each time I see someone sharing and posting “Amen”. But I am having a hard time verbalizing my distaste in a coherent way while sitting here. Am I overreacting here or do these posts go beyond annoying and into just plain wrong? Social media should not determine your spiritual status, and by all means.
If you’re going to be religious, be religious. But don’t sit on your religious ass all day and be naive enough to think that you’re sharing a post and typing “Amen” is going to make any difference to any given situation. If you want to make a difference get off your ass go outside and feed the hungry, help the poor and go help find a cure for incurable diseases. Because I will be really surprised if you get to heaven and Jesus has a tally of how many times you hit the “like” button or how many of Pope Francis’s tweets you shared while being alive on this planet. Log off and go outside.