I Miss the Front Porch Life

porchI miss the old days of the front porch. You know, Andy Griffith sitting out there in the evening, with family and a friend or two, chatting, whittling, strumming a guitar, relaxing and enjoying the quiet. I want that back….even in this electronic age.

By the example of a very godly lady, I’ve been working through this decision for a few months, trying to sort out what is best before the Lord. In the end, I’ve chosen for my Facebook participation to be limited to a new group I created, specifically for family and a few close friends…those with whom I am genuinely “social” on that social media site. I also use the site for a health page, a homeschooling page, and a daily Bible study page…all of which are service oriented venues. And, I’ll be visiting our kids’ profiles…because that’s what moms do. 😉

“And that ye study to be quiet, and to do your own business, and to work with your own hands, as we commanded you” 1 Thess. 4:11

This has given me things to meditate upon. I need more quiet in my life. Less distraction. I am an information hound, so the news feed is a fascinating place for me…links to interesting blogs, recipes, great how-to ideas, news posts (we don’t have network tv). I also don’t see many adults throughout the day, keeping house and schooling our three children, so the social interaction can be tempting too. To compound things, I’m online a lot during the day since most of our school is via computer…so it is very easy to keep that Facebook window open.

Here’s another thing I’ve discovered. Social media can be an unhealthy place for a heart to seek validation. How many likes did I get? (Is “liking” even social? 😉 ) Who looked at this…and who didn’t? Did someone think I was clever? You know how it works. That is not where our ambition should lie.

“I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith: Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing.” 2 Tim. 4:7,8

This is from JFB:

“Greek,make it your ambition to be quiet, and to do your own business.” In direct contrast to the world’s ambition, which is, “to make a great stir,” and “to be busybodies” ( 2Th 3:11, 12 ).”

newsI’ve just found that there is much less “social” interaction on social media than we’d perhaps like to admit. I have hundreds of “friends” on Facebook, but truly less than 100 with whom I have interaction of any real substance. Much of the rest of the activity just doesn’t seem very social.  It seems like we are all standing on our respective street corners, peddling our personal newspapers. Just being candid here.

This is from RWP:

So Paul urges an ambition to be quiet or calm, to lead a quiet life, including silence ( Acts 11:18 ). To do your own business (prassein ta idia). Present infinitive like the others, to have the habit of attending to their own affairs (ta idia). This restless meddlesomeness here condemned Paul alludes to again in 2 Thessalonians 3:11 in plainer terms. It is amazing how much wisdom people have about other people’s affairs and so little interest in their own. To work with your own hands (ergazesqai tai cersin umwn). Instrumental case (cersin). Paul gave a new dignity to manual labour by precept and example. There were “pious” idlers in the church in Thessalonica who were promoting trouble. He had commanded them when with them.

There are some good things to consider here.

Maybe I am just talking to myself. I’ve read very reactionary blog posts about the evils of social media, and I’m not on board with that. It is a tool, and it can be used for good…but it can very easily be used for unwholesome reasons, too. I don’t want to be an “idler” or a “busybody” in any sense. I’m not saying people automatically become this with social media usage…but it does increase the likelihood.

Twitter I could care less about…I’ve used it only when necessary to participate in a giveaway or promotion. I will not appear in the Facebook newsfeed any longer, with the exception of blog autoposts. I may send a birthday greeting periodically. I will be present in my closed group, and those other groups where I serve those in membership. It’s the best move for me at this time. I believe it is the best stewardship of my time.

If there is something fabulous you don’t want me to miss, please tag me! If you want to talk, I’d love a private message, email, text, call, letter…or visit! 🙂

My heart yearns for a quiet life. A front porch life.


4 thoughts on “I Miss the Front Porch Life

  1. Hi Diane I’m glad to read your blog today. I’m an older woman age almost 68 and a believer for 40 years. I’m disabled and have had very limited contact with others except my son and husband; we homeschooled the son . But I have been unable to be around others for about 35 years. I know it sounds weird. Anyway I thought at first that FB and Skype would be ideal for me to use to share the gospel. Recently I have read from credible sources that FB is addictive in the same way as porn or crack cocaine. Changing the brain. Wow. Months before reading this I had a very difficult time as my world became largely virtual. I thought I was going insane. I realized how much I longed for the front porch- I predate TV and Andy Griffith. I’m also seeing articles on what is happening to young children ( 4 years old and younger) who have their own smart phone or iPad or similar. Psychiatrists in England are seeing hundreds of these children who have no communication with their parents or siblings. I use the Internet as a way to pray for others and we are involved in funding missions type work. Also I teach English as a second language ( for free) on Skype and use as a way to talk about the Lord. I use the bible as the way to teach English. All this to say I really appreciate your blog articles; I hope you will continue to limit your time with FB type activities. We will one day give account to God for how we did the most important work any mom can do- shaping the heart of her children to one day love God as the first commandment teaches us. I fully agree with what you see are the negative effects of FB . The impact on a teenager of being “unfriended” has led to suicide. My main problem is a person can pretend to be whoever they want to be- I have tried using Skype as a tool for discipling others who are nominal believers in restricted nations- the problem with that has been I can’t model the life and I have no way to hold the woman accountable for the growth assignments. I’m not giving up. Just doing things a bit differently. I’m still committed to the use of the technology. Not FB. Skype and we chat – yes. I’m praying for you and your husband and children. In the joy of the gospel Ann B

  2. Thank you for these insightful words, and for your PRAYERS! That blesses my heart! Thanks for stopping by my “porch”. 🙂

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