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Rick Lawrence

Rick (rlawrence@group.com and @RickSkip on Twitter) has been editor of GROUP Magazine for over 25 years. He’s the author of the recently released revised edition of the popular title, "Jesus-Centered Youth Ministry," "99 Thoughts on Jesus-Centered Living," the LIVE small-group curriculum Jesus-Centered Living, and wrote the books "Sifted: God’s Scandalous Response to Satan’s Outrageous Demand" (www.siftedbook.com) and "Shrewd: Daring to Live the Startling Command of Jesus" (www.shrewdbook.com) as an excuse to immerse himself in the presence of Jesus.

Snapchat was created to make sexting easier for everyone, even though its creators insisted (despite wide evidence to the contrary) that the popular “disappearing text” app is merely a convenient new way to connect with your friends. Well, Snapchat helped fuel an astronomical rise in sexting among young people. And as bad as that has been, meet Snapchat’s lecherous uncle…

It’s a new app called Sobrr (www.sobrr.me). According to the PR surrounding its release, Sobrr is “a new location-based mobile app where everyone you friend and everything you post expires in 24 hours.” The idea is built around an insidious promise: “If you only had 24 hours to live your life to the fullest—with no baggage from the past and no future to worry about—what would you choose to do?” Well, just as Snapchat downplayed its real purpose, buried in this hopeful description is a wink-wink descent into gutter territory. Here’s a more detailed explanation from the PR company hired to get the word out about Sobrr—you don’t need your Sherlock credentials to get the idea:

“STEP 1:  GO SOMEWHERE—Set aside your baggage and go somewhere awesome — in your hometown or halfway around the world.

STEP 2:  JOIN FORCES—Wherever you are, instantly discover others around you who also want to seize the moment.

STEP 3:  BE EPIC—Do the things you’ve always dreamed of doing and document it on Sobrr with updates, photos, and chat messages.  Others can swipe once to cheer you on.

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STEP 4:  MOVE ON—Everything you’ve shared and all the friends you’ve made automatically expire in 24 hours — one fine day to make it all happen (at least until you decide to try again).


• A spontaneous road trip with new friends to a destination you don’t know.

• Skinny dipping under the summer stars with cheap wine and big smiles.

• An epic Vegas bachelor party that you can’t quite remember — nor forget.

That’s Sobrr.”

Sobrr’s creator is Bruce Yang, described as “a former Microsoft, LinkedIn, and Fitbit engineer who decided one day to build the app of his dreams.” Well, the “app of his dreams” is also the next parent’s nightmare…


Rick (rlawrence@group.com and @RickSkip on Twitter) has been editor of GROUP Magazine for 26 years. He’s author of the just-released book Jesus-Centered Youth Ministry (simplyyouthministry.com). He wrote the books Sifted (www.siftedbook.com) and Shrewd (www.shrewdbook.com) and the upcoming Skin In the Game (2015) as an excuse to immerse himself in the presence of Jesus.

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  • Neal Benson says:

    Thanks for posting this. As a campus pastor, and former High School Pastor, this information is so helpful! I will be sharing this with our staff team.

  • Tonia says:

    So scary!!

  • Wade Bryant says:

    This is taking SnapChat further / it shows that teenagers and people in general are getting more and more comfortable with their sin. Where we used to want a text to disappear in seconds – now we are edging out and putting ourselves out there for 24 hours. Thanks for sharing and giving me clarity on new ways to pray.

  • Madame B says:

    How about we use what was intended for evil for good? You have 24 hours to do something amazing for God. Everyday, there is a new slate to do something even more amazing than the last. Do the mission trip you always wanted to do. Go the extra mile and talk to that family member. If you really only had 24 hours, what would you want your legacy to be for God?

  • connie says:

    Love your reply Madame B

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