I Want To See More – Gen Z plus wants to see joy and positive moments, less trauma and negativity in their social media feeds.
As people around the world have taken to social media in recent months to reflect on the Black Lives Matter movement, social media has been flooded with images of racial violence and black trauma. There are over 608 million tweets mentioning BLM on Twitter alone.
The team at VSCO wanted to know more about its impact on Gen Z, especially young black people — so we asked them*. We wanted to understand what they were currently watching and posting on social media and what we found Gen Z wanted to see and enjoy more.
76% of Gen Z survey respondents said they regularly or often see visual images of racial violence in their social media feeds and that it hurts them emotionally.
Nearly 90% of black respondents to the survey – and 70% of non-black respondents – agree that they want to see and enjoy social media more than they do now.
Black and non-Black respondents also agreed that they see and share more excitement, comfort, and hope through social media.
“[Black happiness means] allowing yourself a moment to take a moment from sadness and grief and face racial trauma and stress, and a moment to pick yourself up and relax and experience joy.” – Kaliya, 22
“It’s being able to be yourself and demand happiness from your life, even though everything is going on in the world.” – Clara, 20
“When I think of Black Joy, I think of determination…it really comes down to finding peace within yourself and having the focus and confidence to navigate your community and your world.” — Alexander, 22
Overall, 87 percent of Black Gen Z survey respondents are optimistic about the future. What’s more, 84% of people believe they have partners of other races and ethnicities on social media – significantly more than the 72% who feel they have partners in real life.
When asked how social media has affected them now, Black Gen Z respondents said they feel more connected to like-minded people and/or less alone (94%) and more open to others. More pity (57%). However, 62% said it made them stressed/anxious.
Their non-black Gen Z counterparts said they are actively learning how to help others (70%), feel more about social, racial and political education (67%), and – Most importantly – more motivated to take action. (56%)
How? Signing petitions and using social media platforms for educational/resource-communication are two ways to take action.
The results strengthen our belief in #BlackJoyMatters now more than ever. Throughout the summer, we’ll be featuring images and art celebrating the joy of blackness and the underbelly of black stories on our social media channels and within the VSCO app. And with you, our community, we’ll talk about what we expect from you.
For Christine, 21, from Melbourne, and Kemi, 23, from Lagos, the easy process is “taking and editing photos on VSCO” and “the creative community on VSCO that has helped me develop my creativity,” respectively. .
For Eli, 22, from New York, “He realized I was a stronger person than I thought.”
We invite you to create, capture and share your art, first-person films and/or photos using the hashtag #BlackJoyMatters here on VSCO and on all social platforms.
* We partnered with JUV Consulting, founder and current Gen Z research group, to survey 1,006 respondents, a quarter (27%) of whom were black, ages 14 to 24, who 13 were held online from 23rd July. July 16, with additional qualitative interviews from 16-24. Most people in the world have no experience of lasting happiness in their lives. We are on a mission to change. All our resources are to lead you to eternal happiness in Jesus Christ.
Since I have heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus, I have not ceased [to pray for you] to give you the spirit of wisdom and revelation to know Him, the eyes of your heart enlightened. I am (Eph 1, 15-18).
If I heard someone praying for God to open the eyes of their heart, I would think they would doubt whether I was really a Christian.
To these believers Paul’s prayer seems unusual, at first paradoxical. “Because I have heard of your faith,” writes Paul, “I pray that God may give you the spirit of wisdom and revelation, and that the eyes of your hearts may be enlightened.” If Paul believes these are already believers, why does he ask God to open their hearts and eyes? Do we only pray for unbelievers?
He prays this way – and so should we – because when we first believe the gospel, God does not reveal himself and his work. Although we have come to know Christ
They know Him – and have given us over to Him, so that He would not be, and what He accomplished for us by His death on the cross.
It is like any other relationship in our life. We don’t stop knowing someone after we love them, as if that’s the end of our relationship with them. Rather our love of knowing more of these things, and prompts us more carefully. Thus there will always be new ways to know and love our Savior.
Paul specifically prays that believers will see and know three things more and more as we walk with Jesus: hope in God, riches from God, salvation with God.
Paul pleaded with God that these loved ones might know “the hope into which he called you” (Ephesians 1:18). They needed God’s help to hold on to the hope they already had. Like the disciples in the stormy boat, we are too easily frightened by the circumstances of this life. Darkness surrounds us, winds blow harder, waves crash into our lives. We often feel helpless, but only because we have forgotten that we are now with Jesus.
Finally, nothing can harm or destroy us because we are saved and protected by God Himself in His Son. And this God, whose wrath was once kindled at our sin, promised to avenge us for ever.
God has become for us the “God of hope” (Romans 15:13). But by faith we rejoice in hope of the glory of God, as is said in Rom.
Second, Paul prays that they may know the riches of his glory in the saints (Ephesians 1:18). Paul loved his heavenly inheritance and maintained it daily through the poverty, persecution, and trials he experienced in this life. Nothing that was given to Paul, nothing that could be taken away, could compare with all that was waiting for him in glory with God.
“Nothing that is given to us, and nothing that can be taken from us, compares to what awaits us.”
Think of all the things we could suffer and lose if we had any idea of the real wealth and happiness we will have here on earth for millions of years later. The hope of an eternal inheritance will strengthen you to sing in the midst of loss, and help you refuse the deceptive desires of the world. It is a sure defense for our heart against low, pleasures, and a devotion that constantly fights against Christ.
May God open the eyes of our hearts to see the value of what we hold in Him and with Him, and the emptiness and vanity of other things and those whom we are inclined to worship.
God has saved you, and has secured for you an unlimited, eternal inheritance. Third, Paul prayed that we might know “the exceeding greatness of his power in us who believe” (Ephesians 1:19). Do you feel weak? All of us – some more often than others. But we are.
You may fall back into the same old patterns of sin, or you may try to believe that God can forgive your past, or you may be looking for weaknesses as a spouse, parent, or child. Can’t see, or physical, emotional, or spiritual burden? Or explain, or experience a thousand other weaknesses.
God wants you to know the power to heal, the power to insist, the power to love and serve, the power to obey.
. And if the power of God is in you, you have infinite, benevolent, and invincible power, which will preserve and increase you in all circumstances. His divine power is in you, not against you.
Remember the Lord: My grace is sufficient for you, for righteousness is made perfect in weakness (II Cor. 12:9).
We want more “Even in heaven, we will never lose all that we know and love about Him.”
We can spend the rest of our lives asking God to give us new visions of ourselves. Even in Heaven – free from sin – we will never tire ourselves there.
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