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Thank you for being a friend…

It’s been a long day. I’m exhausted. I spent over 6 hours in the car doing the commute thing today so my mind might not be as crisp (notice I didn’t use “sharp”) as it normally is. I almost did it though. I almost pulled the plug on Facebook. I was literally “this close” to doing it. The reasons are several. I find it exhausting anymore. Especially now that we are in a political year. I find it more irritating than positive. People have every right to post what they want. I have every right to not read it, or shut it down. It’s really that simple. Another reason? This quote:

I also came to realize that I had actually let triple-digit “friends” become a status. I had taken pride in getting responses to witty things I’d post, or compliments from long lost acquaintances about my beautiful family or my relative “success” in life. Once again, I saw that the depth of my pride knows no bounds. And in the months since that experience, I’ve been chewing on this question: What else do we allow to define us?

(from the upcoming book “Embracing Obscurity)

Ouch. I’m not sure if that hits home for you, but it was pretty close to my front door step. Don’t misunderstand me, I don’t use Facebook for prideful reasons. Well, at least I didn’t realize I did. I think this happened so subtly. It kinda snuck up on me. We all check it. We all want to see who said what. We all want to come up with something everyone “likes”. In many ways, it’s a pride issue and I didn’t even know it was there.

So what happened? Why didn’t I pull the plug? Because no sooner did I set my phone down I got a notification. It was from a “friend request” I accepted the day before. It was from a guy that stole my girlfriend in high school (it was a short relationship, but still). It was from a guy that wasn’t exactly my best friend. It was from a guy that was kind of a rival. I accepted because time has a way of healing old wounds. His notification read:

Thank you for being a friend

Boom. The words just hit me in the chest. I read them three or four times. I went to my “wall” to read it again. Then I read his about section and a word jumped out at me…”Sober”. Boom. Another blow to the chest. This is why I stay on Facebook. A still small voice was almost audible. This is why you don’t unplug it. He/she/they are why you are still here.

This morning during my 3 hour drive, Kari Jobe sang “we are the light of the world, We are a city on a hill. We are the light of the world and we’ve gotta, we’ve gotta, we’ve gotta let our light shine”. Later during the same drive, I opened up “YouVersion”, today’s scripture –

In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven. (Matt 5:16)

See a pattern here? At the end of the day, we have a choice to make. We can allow the frustrating things about Facebook be what they are and extinguish our light (and our account), or we can be light. That’s why my account is still open. That’s why I want to say, to the one that left that on my wall….

Thank YOU for being a friend.


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Comments · 12

  • Dave P · July 12, 2012

    Well said, brother! I’m right there with you! And I’m glad you’ve been a friend for 22 years now. You helped a college freshman feel cool back in the day and now you challenge me almost daily with the things you post. Thank you for continuing to be the big brother I never had!

    • aaron · July 12, 2012

      Goodness Dave, you are far too kind. I always appreciate what an encouragement you are. No matter if it’s Facebook, daily mile, twitter, you are always light to all of those outlets. It doesn’t go unnoticed. Thanks man. I’d be proud to call you brother.

  • Jennifer Higgins · July 12, 2012

    Thank you for having that realization. I am not a facebook friend but I follow you on twitter and your blog. I have no idea how I came to start following you, but I enjoy your posts and your blog, and I completely agree, that we have to be the light, and yours is contagious, so don’t give up…

    • aaron · July 12, 2012

      Thank you Jennifer. It’s nice to “meet” you. We should be friends on Facebook :) Thank you for following the madness on twitter and the blog too. I’m glad you found me. I appreciate the encouragement and kind words.

  • bryanbryankhill · July 13, 2012

    Well done Aaron! Let your light shine brother, cause it’s a bright one. As Jennifer mentioned, it’s absolutely contagious!! Your posts are always uplifting, thought provoking, positive, courageous, and don’t go missed in the Hill household. TYFBAF…keep on rockin’ it!

    • aaron · July 13, 2012

      Wow. Bryan. Thanks for the kind words. I certainly didn’t intend for this post to get this response, but I really do appreciate it. Love watching your adventures as a family and rebuilding your home. Talk about inspiring! My greatest tool is the phone book to call someone to fix things. Thanks for the kind words. Have a great weekend my friend.

  • David Schroeder · July 13, 2012

    And right back at you, Aaron! Comforting words that are so necessary for this type of world we live in. You da man!

    • aaron · July 13, 2012

      Absolutely. Appreciate how we’ve been able to navigate our way through the working world while leaning on one another. Appreciate you dude.

  • Rachel Wojnarowski (@RachelWojo) · July 13, 2012

    Good stuff!!! Don’t know what I’d do without yours and Heather’s friendship. The IRL kind and the online fun.

  • aaron · July 13, 2012

    Thanks Rachel. Very much mutual. So thankful that Heather has a true friend in you. It gives my heart peace that my bride has a friend so dear.

  • Richard Basile · July 13, 2012

    Amen, brother!

    Thank YOU for being a friend.

    • aaron · July 13, 2012

      Thanks Richard. So proud of you man. Your dedication to living fully alive is contagious. Keep it rolling!

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