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Blog

A Giveaway Addiction, and other such confessions

Meg Chaney

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Confession:

I'm really good at using technology.

I have a knack for surfing through social media while doing other things at the same time. I'm also really good at winning giveaways. Why sure I'll "like" all 50 shops on 3 different social media websites and share this giveaway with all my friends.

Please, can I pause now to say that there truly is nothing wrong with entering giveaways. It can be a lot of fun! I've even found some of my favorite bloggers through such giveaways, people I'm still reading years later. In the same token, social media can be such a blessing. Living so far away from family and friends, I count on social media to stay in touch, pray, and encourage loved ones who live far away. As I look at my list of friends, I'm often so amazed at how far stretched my connections are, God has definitely blessed me with some amazing people in my life. I adore social media for that. In fact, I've even made some new, precious friends through social media. 

But, there's a problem too. It becomes an addiction like anything else. As for me, I've become way too addicted to entering giveaways. And lately, I've been convicted of this. I've won a few giveaways that I really didn't want to win. I've received a prize (and have another on it's way) that I really don't desire to own. Why did I enter that giveaway for the gigantic, platinum silver purse, which is absolutely not my style? Why, oh why?

And please, that last thing I want to do with this post is hurt someones feelings. I'm just being honest about my own struggles. I'm human, friends, and sometimes I think I depend on social media, on being recognized, on being good at something, too much.

Having little ones at home is hard, draining work. And it's lonely. Lonely moving every few years and leaving our friends behind. Lonely being in different cities, around different people, and working on forming new connections, new friendships. Lonely, simply in the sense that I'm a full-time, stay at home mom. And so, without realizing it, social media takes too big of a place in my life. Giveaways, in particular, seep in and become way too important.

The honor, the recognition, the sense of being known takes precedent over being known as a daughter of the King. Social media seeps in and takes a place it doesn't deserve. And I hardly realized it was happening. It's a subtle thing. It seeps in, even when I am reading my Bible every day and singing worship tunes throughout the day. It seeps in and doesn't seem "bad," really, compared to other things in life. But it's there. 

In my own life as a mommy I often feel like I fail. I yell too much at my kids, I'm impatient, my house is far from immaculate. I fail at juggling the routine of each day. But I know I'm good at winning giveaways, good at surfing social media, so I turn to that for affirmation. I turn to that, when it's the last thing I should do. I turn to that, while I feel so insufficient in my own life. And then, I recognize the place social media has taken, an I feel like I've failed in that area as well. I look at these prizes I've won, and feel defeated. Downcast. Ashamed. 

But isn't that exactly as it should be?

We recognize our failures, the ways we don't measure up, so that we can turn to Jesus and admit that we make a mess of it on our own. We admit that we don't have it all together. Our priorities are out of wack. We've taken things out of proportion. Become too distracted. We're spending too much time on things that don't matter (such as social media). So that...

So that we can turn our palms up and give it all to Him.

Him, who reminds us that we are weak in this world so that He can be strong.

But He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.” Therefore, I will most gladly boast all the more about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may reside in me.
— 2 Corinthians 12:9, HCSB

Him, who reminds us that His word should be what we desire most in this life. 

How sweet Your word is to my taste—
sweeter than honey in my mouth.
— Psalm 119:103, HCSB

He, who reminds us that we should desire Him, more than any other thing. 

Who do I have in heaven but You? And I desire nothing on earth but You. My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart, my portion forever.
— Psalm 73: 25-26, HCSB

Yes, isn't that beautiful! I may fail, I may often feel defeated, recogizing all that I've done wrong. But God has more for me than feelings of failure and dejection. Of letting my own brain tell me all the ways I don't measure up. No, He gives us those moments of unsufficiency so that we'll learn to lean all the more on Him. He gives us those moments, moments when we recognize just how human we are, so that we depend on Him all the more. He gives us those moments so that we can find freedom from Him. Freedom from addiction. Freedom from pain. Freedom, because He is more than willing to carry our burdens. He is more than willing to be our strength and our protion. Our protion, friends. We don't have to turn to social media, or giveaways, or whatever our temptions may be to find fulffillment, to find release, or recognition. He is already all we need. He is our protion, His words are sweeter than honey, more costly than gold. 

And when we do depend on Him more than any earthly thing, He promises us this:

You will keep the mind that is dependent on You in perfect peace, for it is trusting in You.
— Isaiah 26:3, HCSB

Perfect peace. No room for beating myself up with the ways I don't measure up. No room for walking around in worry, or defeat. No, there's no room for those things when perfect peace invades. How joyous I feel, writing these final words. Because I know where my heart lies. He is my strength today and everyday. I truly don't need anything beside Him. And so, I'm leaving to go on with the rest of my day, take care of my house, my family, and sift through unneeded shops on social media, things that are just distracting me too much from what really matters. Because He is my portion.

Thank you for hearing my confession today, friends. I hope it helped and encouraged you!