By Allison Antram
At 10 a.m. every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, all of campus comes together to worship and exemplify what we know as “spiritual vitality.”
Apparently, it’s also comedy hour.
There is consistently a wealth of sarcastic comments that plague my Twitter timeline. Even during Fall Revival, many students chose to spend their time writing “funny” tweets and complaining, missing any opportunity to gain from the insight Reverend Stan Key had to offer.
You will not enjoy or even agree with every chapel, but Twitter isn’t necessarily the best outlet on which to express that. By all means, discuss chapel. Apply yourself. But don’t just seek out ways to criticize or make jokes. Yes, there’s a lot of C.S. Lewis quotes or Lord of the Rings references, but most of the time, I benefit from each service in one way or another. For example, I loved the all-worship chapel. I embrace the opportunity to take an hour out of my busy day to simply rest in God’s presence and worship, regaining the peace He offers. However, I’m often discouraged to see so many sarcastic or negative tweets after leaving a chapel service I truly enjoyed.
Chapel is not always the best hour of our day; I understand that. There are definitely days when I don’t particularly enjoy chapel, and that’s all right. Not every chapel will speak to us, because every message affects everyone differently and it’s impossible to please everyone. However, we made the choice to attend a university that includes going to chapel three times a week. If we have to abide by this rule, we should not carry it as an obligation, but instead try to embrace it as an opportunity. There’s something in every chapel we can learn from, even if it’s simple, if you are willing to listen. And even if your enjoying it, someone else is.
More than anything, this is a respect issue, and that applies to the person speaking as well as your classmates. Twitter is not a bad thing; it has the potential to be a platform for encouragement as well as negativity. We have the capacity to either build people up or tear them down; it’s our individual choice what kind of message we want to send. As Christians, I believe we are called to more than cynicism and snarky tweets. We are called to focus our thoughts on “what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable,” and what you say reflects that (Ephesians 4:8).
We are called to respect and honor. Listen, be open, be respectful and adjust your perspective. And when we have an issue with chapel, try to emphasize the positive and minimize the negative.