My children have been teasing me a bit this past week because of the amount of time I have been spending on the Pinterest site. I know I'm a bit late to the party, but I'm kind of used to that by now. I really have been doing research, though I'm sure my children won't believe me. I've found some interesting projects that could be potential gifts and it is providing a place to store other projects and ideas I've found that I didn't want to lose. It is definitely proving useful, but, you know what? When it boils down to it, Pinterest is a little dangerous as well.
I think that anyone who spends any regular amount of time on it will be far more prone to envy, greed, and general dissatisfaction than those people who do not. As I search for ideas to go on my Christmas lists, I also see what other people are interested in. It's an interesting mix. There are a lot of obscenely large and ornate houses. There are a lot of really big closets filled with more clothes than any one person could wear in year. There are children's rooms in which I'm sure no child has ever lived. And then there are the models. The incredibly skinny and fit models. Models who have most likely never given birth to a baby (or two). And right there next to all the toned tummies are so many dessert recipes that one could gain weight just by looking at the pictures.
Combined all together it does a spectacular job of painting an idealized world which doesn't exist. Talk about setting yourself up for failure. How can anything in reality compete with such a fantasy? And very little of it is real. Much is enhanced; there are even links pinned to demonstrate how to enhance the reality of your photographs. In some ways it's a form of p*rnography. We fill our minds with the unreal so much so that we lose a taste and appreciation for what is. We dull our senses with things we would never see with our eyes, to the point we can't appreciate the beauty of things which don't appear on a screen.
Am I making too much of this? I don't think so. Anything that causes us to stop being thankful for what we have is dangerous. Dangerous to both our well-being and our relationship to God. Because once we start desiring things that are not ours, we also begin to develop a complaining attitude. And when we complain, even in our heads, it is really God we are complaining to... that He hasn't given us what we know will make us happy. But, He already has, if we have eyes to see it. And it won't be found in a glossy picture on Pinterest.