As a user of (pick one) Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Youtube, Tumblr, Pinterest or whatever has been invented as I'm typing these words, I make the following resolutions for the New Year:
1.) I will treat everyone with charity and give everyone the benefit of the doubt. No matter how rude they are. And no matter how many times they post annoying comments that make me want to stop typing, put on my coat, drive to their town, knock on their door and sock them. Because Jesus never did that when he posted stuff online. Jesus told us always to turn the other tweet.
2.) I will avoid posting anything anywhere when I'm so angry that I can barely type--or speak. Especially speak. That's a tip-off.
3.) I will avoid being drawn into an argument with anyone who is apparently (a) crazy; (b) not listening; or (c) both. Even if they call me (a) stupid, (b) a heretic, or my latest favorite insult (which happened the other day) a "poor excuse for a Christian." I will not be drawn into a pointless argument that will be a waste of time. For both of us.
4.) I will read whatever article I retweet. Most of it anyway. Well, a lot of it.
5.) I will not post too many stories about, or photos of, Pope Francis, no matter what awesome things he does or says. Notice I said not "too many." "Many" is fine.
6.) I will not be surprised when anything that I post that says that women need more decision-making power in the church, that change is not such a bad thing and is often healthy, and that the church needs to treat gays and lesbians with more charity, infuriates some people. Most of all, I will no longer wonder why whenever gay people are mentioned in a positive light some people speak "hating the sin but loving the sinner" without saying anything remotely loving. Instead, I'll just work to support women, gays, and change for the better.
7.) I will not take the bait when people try to bait me. Because it's easy to spot that. There's a reason it's called bait: fish that take it don't end up well.
8.) I will look for news and articles and photos that help people see the workings of grace and that spotlight those in need, and will bring them to people's attention.
9.) I will remember that my goal is not followers or likes but to help people like and follow God.
10.) I will post less and pray more.
Originally posted in America Magazine