Hope for the Selfie Generation

(After looking at another selfie posted by the same girl on Instagram.)

Ash: Seriously?

Me: That would've totally been you in high school.

Ash: You're so right...

 

What is a selfie? Maybe you ought to crawl out of your hole if you don't know the answer to that question. However, if you don't know the answer, according to Wikipedia, "A selfie is a self-portrait photograph, typically taken with a hand-held digital camera or camera phone. Selfies are often shared on social networking services such as Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter. They are usually flattering and made to appear casual. Most selfies are taken with a camera held at arm's length or pointed at a mirror, rather than by using a self-timer." 

When we're browsing through Instagram or Facebook, Ash and I find ourselves rolling our eyes often at some of the middle schoolers, high schoolers, and college students we know that are always posting selfies.  I know, occasionally, there will be an adult that will post a selfie, and to be honest, Ash and I will even take a selfie if we're at a cool event or a special place together.  However, a majority of the time, I find more selfies popping up among middle schoolers, high schoolers, and young college student ages.

But before Ash, myself, or anyone else judges them any longer, let's consider a few things. First, you know you wanna take a selfie too. On those days when you're rockin' your favorite flat bill or your hair is just having one of those perfect days, you know you want other people to notice. You may even take the picture  of yourself and edit it. But you don't post it. You want to know why? 

Because you're mature. Your brain is fully developed and fully functioning.

If you're a Christian, maybe you're just more godly, right?? Maybe. I would also submit another reason. A reason that is a simple, biological function of ourselves. I would suggest that we do not post the selfie because we're able to actually reason with ourselves, and realize that posting a selfie may come across as prideful, attention seeking, or wanting to portray ourselves in a way that is not really us on most days.

Did you know that our brain is not fully developed until our mid-twenties? Do you want to know what the last part of the brain to develop is? The pre-frontal cortex. Essentially, this area of the brain controls reasoning and purpose. The middle limbic region of the brain, which controls emotion, is almost fully developed for most high school and young college students, but the reasoning portion of the brain is not fully developed yet. 

So I don't believe that most young people are just a bunch of sinners that need to repent of their selfie ways. While I do believe sin is involved, I also believe that a young person's brain is simply not fully developed yet, and they are making most decisions based on their emotions from middle area of their brain, instead of the undeveloped reasoning portion.

This post is more for us, who are "mature," with fully functioning brains, choosing to invest in the next generation. Not only are young people facing more temptation than any generation before them has ever faced, but they are also operating with a computer in their head (their brain) that is not fully put together yet. Let's give them some grace and show them that they are loved, how to love themselves, and how to love those around them.

borrowing hope, 

Zach