Guarding Your Faith and Femininity
I have recently decided to take a step back from my social media accounts on Instagram and Facebook, for I have found that personally, my peace of mind tends to flutter away whenever I’ve spent more than a few seconds scrolling through my feed. They say that comparison is the thief of joy, and I have come to realise that my joy has bloomed so powerfully over the last few weeks since refraining from going online. Theses apps may affect everyone differently. But for me, personally, I have found it difficult during this time in my life to keep being bombarded with content of young women my age constantly sharing their breakthroughs and achievements, while I’m currently battling through one of the hardest times in my entire life. It often causes me to drown in self pity. Feelings of shame and embarrassment because I haven’t received the desires and dreams of my heart just yet. I guess, guarding your faith and femininity requires you to walk within wisdom. Wisdom in knowing that because you’re struggling in a tough season right now, it’s not the best thing at present to be comparing yourself to another woman’s journey online. And sometimes, I feel like that’s all instagram is about. Sharing your highlights, and never the battles you face. It’s unrealistic, and it no longer feels authentic to me. I often share my battles vulnerably on social media because I desire to remind women that it’s okay to have hard seasons, and it’s okay to not be okay. But I feel like instagram has become a filter of life itself. You never really see what happens behind closed doors, and because of that, my weary heart really just wants to take a step back from the online world and rather be present in my life, wholeheartedly.
Guarding your faith and femininity is a choice your heart must make. It’s not an easy choice, sadly. For I have found that guarding something often requires sacrifice. I’ve sacrificed being active and sociable on these particular apps, in order to gain peace of mind. Being online was really hurtful for me. I would often receive discouraging comments and private messages, telling me that my dreams for marriage and motherhood aren’t important, and rather, I should ‘focus on God’ instead. But what does it mean to focus on God? It’s so clear in scripture that all He requires of us is to follow the teachings in the bible, and carry a heart full of love, not only for Him, but also the people around us, including ourselves. I’ve never delighted in harsh, religious thinking. The idea that God requires us to be on our knees praying or reading the bible 24/7, day and night. No, I believe that God has created us to live, and to live beautifully. Every woman has her own desires. Whether that be wanting to pursue her career goals, or whether that be wanting to become a homemaker wife and mother, every woman’s desires are absolutely important.
Social media is also filled with an abundance of opinions. I found that for me, it wasn’t healthy to be immersed every single day in varying opinions about singleness, unanswered prayers, mental health issues, political arguments, and so on. Don’t get me wrong, I am thoroughly interested in educating myself regarding matters that are taking place within the world, and the heartbreaking issues that women face. But for me, being saturated within information that is filled with bitterness, sorrow or despair on a daily basis, really became a hard battle for me to push through. I spent so much time absorbing the content because my heart is wired to want to help people, to listen out to them, and to reflect on and pray about how things can change for the better regarding these situations. But the more I consumed this kind of content on social media, the more I became depressed and overwhelmed myself. It kind of reminds me of the scripture that says:
“Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.” – Philippians 4:8
My soul became drowned in sorrow because I was constantly consuming sorrow. Guarding your faith and femininity also means to dwell on what is lovely. I’ve learned to reject the negative things from saturating too deeply within my soul. Because it’s heartbreaking. In every difficult situation, I try to dwell on what the bible says. There are so many peaceful, encouraging, lovely promises within the bible. Jesus said Himself that difficult times will come in life, but we will always have Him, and His peace that surpasses all understanding, and that is something my soul truly wants to rest in.
I feel as though social media apps can either be hot or cold. It’s either plastered with a filter of happiness and celebration, or it can be the complete opposite, with content that is heartbreaking and discouraging. There’s barely an in-between. And for me, the question consistently arose, ‘Will I ever find peace on social media? Will my mind feel safe enough to rest, while constantly consuming such news on extreme levels, while battling through difficult situations in my own life?’
Many people have informed me that these apps tend to show you what you like according to the algorithm. But something I’ve noticed is that regardless of how much I try, there will always be a way where a post triggers me in some sort. I don’t even know if social media in general is healthy. For we see so many young people ending their lives due to the pressures we find on such apps. It’s the most heartbreaking and difficult thing that we’re dealing with in today’s world. I feel it for public figures, celebrities and people in positions of power who are too scared to even speak what is generally on their heart without getting cancelled or receiving death threats. My heart is really breaking for what social media has become. Through which, I’ve decided that it’s best for me to let go and embark on a new, beautiful season that is able to usher some serenity to my heart.
Guarding your faith and femininity can look different for different women. Whatever your desires and thoughts may be, my hope is that you will continue to bloom within the season that you’re in now, with a heart resting in peace, abundant with joy. For you deserve to live within tranquility, being surrounded by bliss and beauty.
Lots of love, Devona Fayana ♡
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