Enjoying the Journey
The technological advances of the last few years have placed the whole world in the palm of our hand. And, yet, is it possible that we are actually missing the world that is going on around us? Plugged in and yet disconnected at the same time!
Our iPods, our tablets, our phones, our latest, greatest, “smart” device have become the focus of our attention. Take a test: go one hour without picking up your phone! Live a day without checking social media. We have become so enamored with it all that we have often become distracted from what is most important.
Time saving devices can steal your time. I would like to share with you three things that technology can rob from you. For each, I want to suggest a challenge that will help you take the first step toward mastering the technology that seeks to rule your life…
- Technology can rob you of communication.
Ironic, isn’t it? The idea behind the device was to stay better connected with others. One sided posts and comments of 140 characters or less have created an environment where few people know how to have a real conversation.
Families sit around the same table, each with their device in hand, “communicating” with others and missing the loved ones right in front of them.
Challenge: Write a letter. A real one. Make a visit to someone and leave your phone in the car. Have supper with your family and deliberately leave all devices in another room. Force yourself to develop a meaningful conversation with someone today.
- Technology can rob you of meditation.
The constant buzz, the chime, the ring – it is the world we live in. We do not control the technology; it controls us. We are accessible to everyone, all the time…except God.
I hear God’s voice most clearly in quiet places. The problem is: there are so few quiet places! The constant bombardment of contacts and information numbs the mind. It stifles creativity and healthy thought processes. Most of all, it can drown out the one Voice that truly matters.
Challenge: Spend some time in a room, alone. Think. Pray. Write down your thoughts. Ride quietly in the car. Choose a verse of Scripture and practice meditating on the Lord. Once you get over the short-term withdrawal from “noise” you will be amazed how God speaks to you!
- Technology can rob you of observation.
It is possible to spend so much time looking at your device that you forget people. Real, breathing, needy people are all around you. Soon we fail to notice hurts that we could heal, or loneliness that we could fill.
Challenge: Walk through the crowd slowly…without your gadget. Look around you. Find someone who needs encouragement and stop to talk with him or her. Maybe a good place to start would be in our own living rooms.
I must admit that this is something I am working on today. I have not arrived! But I am learning that if I do not govern the technology, it will soon guide my entire life. No one should have that power but God.
“All things are lawful unto me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any” (1 Corinthians 6:12).