FAITH FUEL

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Swiping Right On Christ


Some of you will know what the title of this article is referring to, and some will not. If not, don't let that discourage you as if you are some old out of touch individual, similar to those who were viewed as people that couldn't be trusted over the age of thirty in an era gone by ... and if you do get the reference ... just make sure you don't think to yourself that old people over the age of thirty can't be trusted. Our current cultural climate of vilifying the aged and glorifying the youth is having very negative consequences, but that would be a different post.


To "swipe left" in modern vernacular (as in ... that's what the kids say on the streets these days) means to find someone or something unattractive (and yes you can look these terms up on the urban dictionary website), and the swipe right means the opposite; to find someone or something attractive. These terms come from the way that many smart phone apps work, particularly a newer dating app called Tinder has made this popular.

And while I have heard of Christians being on hook up dating apps like Tinder, I pray to God that this would be a VAST minority of Christians, if we would allow ourselves to even to refer to them as that. I literally wouldn't even know where to begin to tell someone why a Christian on Tinder is a bad idea ... there are just too many reasons.

The bigger picture to me is that apps like Tinder (and technology in general) are changing how we see and understand people. It's shifting our perception of what is valuable and beautiful. With the unattractive gone in the 0.5 seconds it takes to swipe left, and the attractive's personal contact info and current GPS location at your disposal in the 0.5 it takes to swipe right, we are learning as a society to value the wrong things. We are valuing things like instant self-gratification, and the path of least resistance, while also embracing the overarching dehumanization that comes from seeing people as commodities rather than as human souls. This is a dangerous slippery slope that leads to increased problems like human trafficking just to name one.

The reverse often comes with this as well; like the growing inability to deal with the inevitable pain and grief that life deals out because of a high-jacked and short circuited spiritual and emotional maturity that has not been allowed to develop properly.

Now I'm sure that every culture and every generation has thought that they were on the cutting edge of some discombobulating change for the worse, and I'm sure we are no different, but I think we would be wise, most especially as Christians to heed the wise words of a king long past:

Beauty is fleeting and charm is deceptive, but a woman (person) who fears the Lord is to be praised. (Prov 31:30)

However in this culture of instant gratification and the heightening value of sexual pleasure while devaluing the human eternal soul, we as Christians can plant our Chuck Taylors deeply in the sand (check out the urban dictionary again if you need to) and embark upon a massively counter cultural movement as we follow our Lord Jesus, who was and is the most counter cultural agent that has been or ever will be by necessity (Jn 18:36) and remains as the most beautiful of all things to our souls.

Ask yourself as a Christian, do you find Christ among the most attractive things in the world? What do you swipe right for over and above him? If you are not a Christian, ask yourself, what do you find to be the most attractive thing in the world (think valuable, not just aesthetics)? Why do you find that particular thing attractive, and how long will it remain attractive ... what is it's shelf-life?

#culture #relationships #spirituality #technology #beauty