Do I Have To Tell You

I have a friend who is an amazing photographer. They say that pictures are worth 1,000 words. Some of his are worth a million. Some of my favorite photos are the ones he takes in the Smokey Mountains. Recently he’s been posting photographs of Cades Cove and they are simply mesmerizing. The way he edits his photos are profound. The time he takes to sit and wait for nature to make her way around so he can capture her image is applaudable. The gems he shares on Facebook are stunning and makes you wonder how much he gets paid for such art work.

However, I can always tell when he comes back from his trips because my Facebook feed becomes filled with such images. I like them. I like them all. He’s just that good you can not not like them. Yes! You have to like them. He really doesn’t leave you a choice with his ability to capture nature in all her beauty.

But sometimes I just want to tell him, to save me trouble, that I’m not going to “like” his pics anymore. Because I like them all. So instead of clicking “like” on all of his pictures, I just want to post on his wall that from here on, just keep in mind that when you post a picture, I perpetually like every post.

But we like affirmation don’t we. We like being told we’re liked. We like confirmation of deeds we do. We enjoy the praise that we get when we do something somebody likes. But when we continue to work at the same level that’s so far above the normal, complements begin to fade. When we consistently  are good at something, praise begins to become so expectant that it seems to no longer be praise but the norm.

But that doesn’t mean we ned to keep quiet. We still need to communicate because that’s what folks in relationships do. It’s been said that second to finances, marriages end in divorce due to communication problems. When we don’t talk with one another, friends will begin to question the strength of the relationship. Lovers will begin to feel unloved. Partners will begin to feel cheated on.

Emotional abandonment is a serious disability. Lack of communication will begin to affect someone so much that they truly will begin to feel emotionally abandoned. This is why communication is key to any relationship. Even if one speaks truth without love, at least something is being communicated. It’s not healthy if nothing is being communicated because this opens the door for so many questions without answers. The one who is feeling emotionally abandoned will begin to answer their own questions without basis.

Sometimes we need to be told regardless of the trouble it takes to go through with it. This is speaking truth in love (Ephesians 4:15). Relationships need communication to exist and without it, there is no relationship. Spouses need to speak to one another. I once heard an old man say that he told his wife he loved her the day they got married and that if anything changes he’ll let her know.

God desires to be told how good he is, how awesome he is, how much we love him. He desires to have relationship with us, not religion. I think religion is even stuffy to God. Communication with God is not just about our list of needs in a prayer or us reading a book with black and red letters. It’s truly speaking our love to him and waiting for Him to reciprocate communication. It’s actually living in the Spirit, continually engaging in communication with our Heavenly Father.

My friend? He needs communication. He needs to be told that he is good at what he does. He desires a committed communicative effort. To just give him a blanket statement of “like” isn’t good enough. That’s the same as the old guy saying that if anything changes, I’ll let ya know.

Communication takes an effort. Even if it’s a move of the mouse and click of a button. Effort is necessary. Without effort, there is no communication. Without communication, there is no relationship. Without relationship, well, it’ll get pretty dang lonely.

So I think I’ll keep clicking the “like” button.



About Kevin Riner
child of grace, worshiper of Jesus, husband, father, Pastor of Village Church, author of Faith Debugged

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