Unplug From the World

Psalm 1

1 Blessed is the one

    who does not walk in step with the wicked

or stand in the way that sinners take

    or sit in the company of mockers,

2 but whose delight is in the law of the Lord,

    and who meditates on his law day and night.[1]

We live in a world where there is constant noise and very little silence. We are constantly bombarded with noise and distractions that compete for our attention. We have the internet, television, television and movies on our computers, tablets or smart phones. And oh yes, our smart phones. How many mobile phones does your family own? Do you ever notice how often you or another member of your family is engrossed in their smart phone? I must admit that I have been guilty of this myself and it has been pointed out to me by my teenage daughter.

I read an interesting article this morning as I was doing some writing. The article examines how the use of smartphones are taking over our lives. Bob Sullivan, a columnist for NBC News, writes that “our ability to unplug and relax is under assault.”  The columnist is writing about how the technology of the smart phone has done serious damage to the three-day weekend. Sullivan goes on to write that “The average smartphone user checks his or her device 150 times per day, or about once every six minutes.” [2] That is a staggering statistic and I believe that it is a fairly accurate number.

God is being pushed out of our lives by the devices and the technology that is created by this carnal world that we live in. The internet, like most other technology, has its dark side as well as its useful and educational aspect. Please don’t misunderstand me, I am not against technological innovations, rather the overuse and misuse of these devices that keep us busy and tuned in to them and not God. We allow many different electronic devices to allow us to lose focus on God as well as our family and loved ones.

Have you ever sat down for a meal and noticed that several people at the table are checking their phone for email, stock quotes, or Facebook status updates?  Many of us are so plugged into our smartphones that we fail to grasp opportunities to communicate with those that we love and find out what is going on in their lives, especially those of us who have children. Even saying the blessing before our meal is sometimes “forgotten” because we are checking something on our phones. We can’t seem to resist the urge to unplug from this world, even for a family mealtime or fellowship time together.

I am aware of this temptation in my own life, especially in my morning quiet time with God. I manage to get up early to spend at least thirty minutes alone in quiet meditation with God and I turn on the TV to check the news headlines or my favorite sports channel for overnight scores. Then I log onto my computer and check several local newspaper websites to find out what’s going on in my community. I then quickly want to check my email to see if anyone has contacted me since I went to bed last night. And before I realize it, my thirty minutes alone with God had ended over fifteen minutes ago!

Now, a time that had been set aside for God to communicate with me has passed and I begin the day without having that quiet time to discern God’s direction for my day. Of course, I can still pray and talk to God while I am in the shower or on my way to work but it’s not the same for me. I need that quiet, still time where I can be silent and still and listen for God. After I leave the house and begin my day, my mind goes off in a thousand different directions and I don’t have the focus on God that I did in that quiet, early morning time. I also notice that on the days when I don’t have that quiet time with God, I experience more stress and I struggle more with just getting through that particular day. Beginning my day in the presence of God is essential to preparing me for the day ahead.

So I urge you to unplug from this world that we live in and plug into God! God is present and He wants to communicate with you if you will only allow Him the opportunity to do so. Begin your day by seeking God and God will respond. God has an amazing way of using the Bible to communicate and minister to us. Sadly, many professing Christians do not begin the day by reading God’s word. They are plugged into this world that we live in and disconnected from God. Many people wonder why God is silent when the problem lies not with God but in our own personal choice to be more connected with this visible world rather than the invisible reality of God.

[1] Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

[2]   http://redtape.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/05/24/18463775-how-the-smartphone-killed-the-three-day-weekend?lite


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