Wednesday, September 29, 2010

#195-Facebook Suggestions to join/"like" A Youth Group

An open letter to the Facebook suggestion to join the Ignite Youth Group from that one girl I think I met at youth convention two years ago,

Listen, I know I ignored your request to join your youth group on Facebook. The reality is it's not you, it's me. The problem lies within myself. I take the blame. You have been terrific. However many hours you have been sitting there in my e-mail inbox and on Facebook itself. Dedicated, sturdy, patient.  I feel awful about it. Believe me, I really do. I know it seems like I don't care, but I do. I feel a guilt similar to when a girl comes up to you after church selling various food items such as popcorn in a bucket, fudge, etc... for her school fundraiser to go on the field trip to fifth grade camp. And her mother, the choir director, is staring right at you. Waiting. Waiting for you to pay for some overpriced popcorn that you will never eat. She is making judgements if you don't pledge money. You hate that. You will feel guilty if you don't put an "x" in that box. And you will feel guilty if you do put an "X" in that box, wondering why maintaining a fake friendship with the choir director so you could be in the front row of the choir was worth $17. So you see,  you're not the only one hurting. It's not all about you. I didn't like what I had to do...clicking the "ignore" button. I would like to point out that the "ignore" button is very misleading. I didn't ignore you whatsoever. Rather by clicking the "ignore" button, the click in itself was an acknowledgement of your existence. A salute to you. A salute to America. 

No, let's not make this about me. I can carry on without you. It's you I am worried about. We can work through this. Not together of course. Because we need to get over each other. How do you expect us to get over each other if I am apart of your youth group? Constantly telling me what events you have planned and how you would like a commitment from me to attend. But you should know me by now, all 40 hours or so since we have known each other. I am deathly scared of commitment. That's why I was so hesitant to ignore your suggestion in the first place. Because the "ignore" button means a commitment to being apart. And thus, even if I was apart of youth group on facebook, I would always end up instinctively  clicking the "maybe" option on going to your dinner parties and game nights, which is completely unhelpful, because you have to make plans at how much food you will buy, and maybe's don't cut it. So I am helping you out, don't you see? I am saving you all the future drama and confusion and uncertainty about whether or not I will show up to the events you would have invited me to if we were together. It's for the best for both of us. God told me so.  

I know what you're thinking. You are thinking I led you on, by hovering over the "join" button for a half second with the mouse pointer. I can assure you, for that split second, I was not teasing you whatsoever. My intentions at that moment were sincere. I was honestly thinking about committing myself to your group. But I realized I barely even knew you. I haven't even been to your church!

And don't even bring up that other youth group in your section that I have joined on facebook. First of all, that's not even your business. I am not committed to you, remember? But, I guess I kind of owe you this, for all I've put you through.  The truth is the Ultimate Youth Group has a cute girl that I have had my eye on for a while. Yeah, the one whose status you caught me liking yesterday. She is not stupid! So what if one of her favorite movies has Hugh Grant in it? Okay, two of her favorites have Hugh Grant in it. The dude has a British accent and a smile that would make heartless truckers weep. I guess if there is some departing advice, it is this: if you get a pretty girl in your youth group, people will readily join. You have potential in that one girl in your youth group. She just needs to age a couple years, lose a few pounds and get a new wardrobe. One not replicated from the closet of her mother. I didn't mean that last part. Probably not the best thing to say right about now.

But seriously, enough about the Ultimate Youth Group. I mean, for goodness sake, look at her name. "Ultimate?" That might be the most pathetic youth group name I have ever heard of. Ignite, now that's a good youth group name. It inspires, infers potential, and threatens to be the spark that will destroy the entire town in a forest fire through a revival from God. The revival that has been preached over your youth group for some time now. The one that will ignite the entire church into a city-wide  revival. I believe it! You are a wonderful youth group. I am sure of it. A living testament to the hope that still can be found in the loathsome state of the human condition. Some say the human race is doomed. Diagnosis: Terminal. You disagree. You are the rock that brings an identity to an otherwise dismal existence to a dozen or so miscreant youths, aged 12-21.

 I visited your page a solid 36 hours after you suggested 344 people to join your group to see what you're all about. Who cares that only 17 have taken you up on your advice? That's only 32 less than the "illumination" youth group at the Baptist church down the street from your church. Maybe it's the profile picture. It's not very enticing. You used Comic Sans for goodness sake to write your youth group name in the picture! It's a visual atrocity. I would help you but I'm really really busy at the moment. Yeah, in a meeting. An important meeting. Things are getting done.

Ah, who I am kidding....


Think before you send out these mass invites to join your youth group. Do not tread on us. Inviting yourself to our facebook home page and our inbox. I have friends, and they cut people. Just a little close rip with a knife. To keep you on your toes. No Bloodshed. I will send them to you should you continue imposing your youth group through suggestions and invites.  I doubt a vast majority of those who you invited know your youth group exists, and even less have been to a service. Think quickly. Do us a favor. Only invite people who you know have an association with your youth group. It will take you maybe 10 minutes to go through your entire friend list to decide who should be invited, and when you take the check away from my name to not invite me, you will save yourself one less frustrated person who grimaces when they get the e-mail in their inbox.

I mean,  you "Ignite youth group" are not even the worst one in my mind. There are many invites, from youth groups in different states! States that I have never been to. Why would I like their youth group? Why?!? I am sure each one of them is a great group in their own right. And they probably pray passionately and have great sermons and fun fellowship. But why must we be subjected to your onslaughts of invitations to places that are geographically impossible to be at, even if I left the day before the actual event?

And as for you, nameless female who did the actual suggestion to join your youth group on facebook. I have a bone to pick with you. First off, I didn't even realize we were friends on facebook. Your name was familiar. But I couldn't quite put a face with it. So I found your profile. And thought for a 30-40 seconds, "who the devil is this girl?" And more importantly, why are we even friends on facebook? And then it clicked. I think it clicked. It definitely clicked. But my clicking may be inaccurate in it's memories. The memory was at youth convention two years ago. After the first night's church service. My friend thought your one friend was kinda cute. So a few of us guys gathered around your group in a circle with glances back and forth from each male to each female and back again, making value judgments of disinterest about you all. Truth is, I thought your friend was not even that cute, but my friend, he is always drawn to a new face. I had no intentions to make a facebook friend in this conversation. Let my friend make his intentions known. Initiate potential for future facebook conversations between him and her. We will say our names, you will say your names. Shake hands. Then maybe a few jokes. Stuff we will laugh at that is not really funny. I will grow frustrated because every second in this circle implies one less second spent pursuing the female of my own fancy, but then again, I know i will never have the guts to actually talk to her (and if I do I will say something that rambles out of my mouth and makes no sense). So being this circle is probably better. It allows me to grow frustrated at this conversation but it also delays my inevitable rejection. That girl probably likes John Legend anyways.

After this conversation,  I will forget your name. And you will forget mine. Or you should. But, when I get home, there you are as a friend request in my inbox. You did not forget my name. I accept. I never ignore a friend request. Sure you liked a few of my statuses and even wrote "LOL" on a couple, but that died off eventually because I never reciprocated. Our friendship should have died then. But now! There you are....inviting me to join your youth group. Putting me in a bind. But know, all this built up frustration. It's really not entirely your fault. You were very kind in that conversation two years ago. It's all of those invites to youth events that I will not be at. And suggestions to join a youth group with a name that has something to do with fire and energy. It's them. They have ruined me. Deteriorated my mental health single handedly. They don't tell you about these invites and suggestions when you get the Holy Ghost. They probably should. I bet the world doesn't have it as bad as us in terms of the quantity of these suggestions and invites.

Anyways, I'm sorry about all of this. I didn't know I had this in me either. I wish you the best of luck and everything. Creative ideas for your yearly youth revival and stuff. But i gotta go now. I have some facebook stalking to catch up with. And that daily visit to that one website that shows funny pictures of celebrities that I don't even know what they are famous for or what  movies they have been on. It's a really a big day ahead of me. I might even walk up to the store and get a Hershey's cookie and cream  candy bar if I feel motivated. You are invited if you can drive the 4 hours down here for the 3 minute walk there and back. I probably won't even talk with you though. Just put some money in the offering plate.


  1. Your writing gets better and better. Keep up the great work!!! :)

  2. lol... Hugh Grant? friends who cut... no bloodshed? at least u didn't pick on the Christian version of John Legend, Mali Music! but my favorite bit was by far "They don't tell you about these invites and suggestions when you get the Holy Ghost. They probably should...."