It’s heartbreaking. Every time I see it I cringe and my stomach turns, sometimes I can stop the carnage, other times I am helpless to do anything but pray.
Micro-rant-noun-a sentence or two posted on Facebook, Twitter, or other social media regarding volatile subjects better kept private. Usually between family members or friends.
I get it, I really do. There have been days when I am so frustrated with my situation that I want everyone to know-especially the person who wronged me. I’ll even admit that there have been times when I have typed out a justifiable declaration, but then hit delete.
Why? As Christians, we should avoid the micro-rant because:
1. It’s awkward. Have you ever been in a situation where someone says
something that doesn’t quite fit the moment?
Imagine this: We are staring at the sky talking about the beauty of the sunset, being drawn into a place of awe and worship.
Then out of nowhere someone in our group begins relating gruesome details about last night’s episode of the Walking Dead. Listen, I enjoy hearing about that stuff, but it’s a buzzkill and very…well…awkward.
2. It’s harmful. On a more serious note there are two people who suffer when we rant. First is ourselves. Think about this for a moment. Imagine you and I are friends then one day I see you bringing your private life in full view of social media. To me, you have just become untrustworthy. I will hold back from sharing my heart with you because I fear that if you were able to easily post about your private life then my private information will be fair game for you as well.
As a result of this lack of trust (one of the building blocks of friendship), you and I grow apart and you are hurt because of it. It’s not that I don’t like you, I am just afraid.
The second group to suffer is others. Your friends, siblings, spouses, and children, do not want the world to know their business. It’s personal and embarrassing. As believers, we need to value others more than we value ourselves. The Apostle Paul says to the Christians in Philippi: Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of others. ~Philippians 2:3-4
The micro-rant is the opposite of selflessness. It is selfish and self-serving. Jesus never acted in self-service but in submission and love of God and others.
3. It does not solve the problem. The purpose of the micro-rant is to burn, scald, belittle-and maybe even a touch of revenge. It is also meant to push someone hard enough so maybe they will do what we want. We think the problem will be solved. Never in my life have I seen or heard someone say, “Wow, they came at me with such force and volatility that I said, boy, you’re right-I’ll change my ways.” That is what we are hoping for, but it is never what we get.
4. It creates more problems. The root of all sin is pride. Pride says, “I’m right, and you’re wrong.” So whenever you micro-rant, you are not putting someone in their place, but egging them into battle. Some people roll over and surrender, others fight back. Both of these create problems of distrust, fear, hurt, sadness and so on. None of this is of honors Jesus who calls us to love our neighbor as part of our devotion to Him.
There are better ways to communicate frustration and handle our anger. If our desire is to love and honor God then we must find different ways of handling this. Whenever I identify a problem I like to offer a solution. In my next post I will be offering some useful solutions.