I started my first facebook page, Trying God’s Patience, at the end of October 2011, and as at the end of 2012 it had near-on 75,000 followers. It started more-or-less as an experiment, but with every new comment from its readers, it took on its own life.
– Every day, someone says “that was just what I needed to hear right now” and every day someone posts on the page and says “thanks”.
– Occasionally, someone writes “F@$& God”, or “F%&@ You” on the page. I’ve learnt to leave them to God and delete them.
– Occasionally, someone wants an argument; I’ve mostly learnt to stop giving them one, but there’s sometimes a fine balance between explaining and getting caught up in someone’s own issue.
– I’ve learnt I have a responsibility to care for everyone, including the angry people.
– I’ve learnt to be a good host.
– I’ve discovered other pages purporting to be peace-loving and inspirational like to unabashedly pinch the posts I’ve spent hours on, sometimes even deleting or photoshopping out the logos I’ve taken to adding. I haven’t yet outed the rotten sods, but I’m considering it.
(This doesn’t include those pages who’ve picked something up from round-about – because some of the pics have spread like wild fire – who are usually more than happy to give credit where credit’s due.) I remind myself daily to not be so precious.
– I’ve learnt that whereas my page is special to me and I like to imagine the people visiting it are guests in my home, I don’t have an expectation that any of them think that way – that’s okay – but a few are really bad guests,
HOW TO BE A GOOD FACEBOOK GUEST:
If you don’t like the cake, don’t say so, just don’t eat it / If you don’t like the view, don’t say so, smile at your host instead / If you don’t agree with your host, don’t tell them they’re wrong, say you don’t agree / Don’t steal the silver / Say please and thank you / If you have to go to the bathroom, clean up your collateral whiz (and any other mess), and please wash your hands / Your host has baked especially for you – don’t vomit on their rug.
– I’ve learnt more diplomacy than in all my years being a parent and a businesswoman.
– I’ve re-affirmed a lot of things I already knew, including
….sadly, too many people don’t understand irony,
….that no matter how funny something is, someone will always want to take it seriously,
….that no matter how brilliant and meaningful a quote is, someone will always want to argue the exception instead of taking what wisdom they can,
….that people are people wherever they’re from, and regardless of any other factor, each one deserves courtesy and love,
– I’ve learnt that some people refuse to feel joy, but that most people are incredibly enthusiastic at any opportunity to share in it.
– I’ve learnt that people really do want meaningful inspiration – not crystals and unicorns, not trite lines – but real knowledge and understanding of God and the universe, and to share the thoughts of the World’s greatest thinkers, writers, philosophers and prophets.
– Just when I think I know exactly what the most inspirational post is going to be for people, I post a lemon; or something I thought was average totally hits the spot.
I’m enjoying the ride and I’m grateful for the inspiration, fun and laughter those twelve thousand give me every day. I have my special favourites, but it’s a secret – I so love when they appear. xoxo
PS: After TGP was hacked at New Year 2013, I started my new page Sue Fitzmaurice which is now my main facebook home. TGP didn’t seem the same, even after I got it back off the hackers after a week or so, and I’ve given it to friends with a penchant for religious unity, etc. xo
This article was written by tryinggodspatience