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So… not my most popular sermon, but here’s a blog version of last Sunday’s message. I mentioned it was probably easier to preach it than to hear it, so let’s see how READING it pans out for ya. It’s long I know, but bear with me. It’s worth the read.

Anyone who owns a Twitter account has either done it, or had it done to them (at least you THINK it was done to you). Talkin’ bout the good ole’ “subtweet”!

If you’re not sure what that is, Urban Dictionary defines it as this; “A tweet that mentions a Twitter member without using their actual username. Usually employed for negative or insulting tweets.”

Basically, it’s a way to write something bad about someone without them knowing it’s directed towards them. Or as I define it (in a not-so-classy way); “A cowardly way to talk crap about someone because you’re actually a little afraid of them.”

It’s easy to hide behind 140 characters instead of dealing with confrontation head-on. I compare it to playing paintball with our youth ministry in the past. The referee yells “Go” and some would never move one inch. They would hide behind the bunker, scared to death, hold their gun up and do what’s called “blind shots”. That’s just sticking the gun over the bunker and pulling the trigger like a madman, hoping you hit someone. Subtweets are the same, but we’ll get to that in a minute.

Jesus always handled conflict head-on. He didn’t “blind shot” anyone and He surely didn’t run and hide. As Christians, shouldn’t we be the same? Sure, but instead, when we encounter conflict or get angry, we log in, take aim and fire away. I’d like to show you 4 quick truths about “subtweeting” you may not realize.

1. It shows your immaturity.
Like a 6 year-old who just got their ball taken on the playground, we run off and talk about what a doodie-head someone is. The Apostle Paul had to address the Corinthian church about their same immaturity towards each other.
1 Corinthians 13:11 “When I was a child, I spoke and thought and reasoned as a child. But when I grew up, I put away childish things.”
Time to grow up my friends.”

2. It shows you can’t be trusted.
It’s heartbreaking to find out someone in your crowd of pals turns out to be a backstabber and liar. Their nice to your face, but seem to always find that opportunity to let you have it. Jesus understood this all too well as Judas does in Matthew 26:14-16 and don’t forget the other guys, especially Peter in Matthew 26:31-35.

3. It shows you can’t handle conflict.
Just like my kids in paintball battle, instead of facing opposition, we hide behind our Twitter Bunker and hope our blind shots hit the target and inflict a little pain. I personally believe the only reason we do this is because we’re actually a little afraid of them. What if we were brave enough to do what Jesus said in Matthew 18:15,16?
“If a fellow believer hurts you, go and tell him—work it out between the two of you. If he listens, you’ve made a friend.”

4. It’s Bullying.
Label it what you want, say you’re “just getting things off your chest”, however you wanna wrap it up, it’s bullying. But let’s remember that people, young people, have taken their own lives over crap like this. You don’t want that kind of responsibility haunting you.

Ephesians 4 tells us “Don’t use foul or abusive language. Let everything you say be good and helpful, so that your words will be an encouragement to those who hear them… Get rid of all bitterness, rage, anger, harsh words, and slander, as well as all types of evil behavior. Instead, be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you.”

If you’ve made it this far in the blog and actually may care a little about what I’m saying, I wanna leave you with 3 things to think about before you shoot your next subtweet from behind your Twitter wall.

1. Would I say this to their face? If so, why haven’t I?

2. What does this really say about my character?

3. Am I acting in a way that truly honors the “Jesus” I say I follow?

BTW, this blog was written specifically for you. Yeah, you know who you are.

Earl

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