The Selfie Phenomenon
When you hear this word, one either rolls their eyes, laughs, thinks “it’s been a while since I’ve taken one of those,” or “The last one I took was really great!” The selfie. The phenomenon is overtaking the nation through cell phones. Every time I am around a teenager, especially teenage girls, you can guarantee a selfie is taken. In fact, 35 million selfies are taken every month.
Selfies are the most popular genre of photo. People are taking selfies while driving, during school, on vacation, at home, while they are studying, with family, with friends, at funerals, and the list goes on and on. 25 percent of selfie takers have taken a sexy-selfie, and the girls are more likely to do it with 27 percent having taken one vs 23 percent of men.
So what inspires one to take a selfie? It truly is an interesting thing. Most teenage girls do not like the reflection the mirror shows them on a daily basis, yet they are confident enough to take a selfie and post for all to see.
Wouldn’t this be considered vain? Yet it contradicts what statistics are showing us when it comes to self esteem and teenage girls. Maybe it’s because you can easily edit a selfie or see what the picture will look like before you press the button. Maybe it’s to manage our reputations. I do find it interesting that, if not all, definitely most selfies are with a crazy face or expression. The most common selfie has been with girls LSO, (lips stuck out) but now the new trend in selfies is putting on your “smolder” face. All to say it’s crazy to me that there is a trend when it comes to selfies.
Selfies remind me of family photo Christmas card; the kids are all perfectly put together, dressed to match with their pretty smiling faces on, but in reality we know that there had to be stress, screaming and crying at some point to get the picture perfect photo. A selfie can portray the message and image we want others to see and think about us.
But there is another thought behind the selfie. Could selfies actually help our self image? Could girls begin to like the picture they have taken of themselves with confidence as they send out for their friends and the world to see? (we are talking about modest selfies here)
Whichever side of the coin you are on when it comes to selfies, we all can agree that an image is reflected by these photos of oneself. The question is, who or what is being reflected? As the selfie phenomenon continues, there is a huge opportunity to reflect who Jesus is to us and how we are being His hands and feet. What if we began taking selfies while we are feeding the homeless, helping the outcast, sitting by the girl who is all alone? We wouldn’t take a selflie in a boastful way but take it to encourage and inspire others to live out God’s Word and ultimately to have our lives continuously reflect who Jesus is to us.