Don’t get me wrong. I really enjoy using Twitter, and the past two years of “tweeting” has done a lot of good for my soul. But still, Twitter is not real.
It is not real for the simple reason that people are very selective on what they choose to tweet, and how many of the people you follow are willing to tweet their real lives? When someone just got in an argument with their spouse and asked for forgiveness, who tweets about their need for forgiveness and prayer for repentance? Christians, especially pastors, are prone to tweet about the successes or fruit from their labors, but who tweets about seasons of struggle, emptiness, or barrenness in their soul? Let’s face it. Twitter resembles more of a collection of high school yearbook quotes than the book of Psalms.
The beauty of the Psalms is that it is uncensored reality from the lives of God’s people. There are shouts of praise next to laments of “how long, O Lord?” There are moments of seeking the face of God and extolling his infinite worth (you are my portion, whom do I have but you) and there are moments where it seems God has abandoned them in despair. The full range of emotion and experience is expressed in the Psalms, but on Twitter, you get the veneer of virgin skies unfamiliar with the storms of life.
So my caution to all my friends on Twitter, be careful. Don’t believe what the updates are telling you all the time. It’s not real. There are thousands if not millions of updates that go unannounced that, were we to know them, would change the “face” of Twitter. If King David were tweeting today, my hunch is that many people would unfollow him because many of his updates wouldn’t sound good enough to be retweeted. But that’s the difference between Twitter and the real world. God saw David’s heartfelt confessions good enough to be recorded in Scripture and has resonated with saints throughout the generations. So while your last Twitter update may resonate for the next minute, it is good to reminded that reality is not grounded in momentary novelty.