Several years ago I went to Israel with my church. It was in a time when Middle East tensions where at a relative lull in activity and so I travelled freely with no concerns. However, upon arrival in Tel Aviv (Ben Gurion Airport) I noticed everywhere there were signs to stay alert, put the cell phones down and pay attention to one’s surroundings. This was a safety issue. Be forewarned.
As I sat in a train station recently I noticed a need for the same thing. Virtually everyone around me was looking down. Engaged in a screen, not the moment…they were absorbed in the seduction of technology and collectively were missing the lives passing by. So absorbed, a snake could have slithered into their purse or bag or even folded coat and no one would have noticed.
It occurred to me that this is an analogy for our spiritual life as well. We are so easily distracted by getting to the next thing and the to do list and the warp and woof of a hyper-sized society that we are those people in the train station. We have relationships with our phones, but are we pursuing relationships that count? I ask you – I ask me…how often do I actually sit in silence and close off the cacophony of the world’s voices to hear the quiet whisper of my Lord? The Lord reminds us to Be Still and Know that He is God.
But really, do I spend my days looking down? Am I at my phone, my laptop or with the TV…or is it that I focus on my troubles and look away from the lives in front of me who may be in need? If I am not looking ahead, how can I see where I am going? If I am not looking expectedly up, how can I experience God’s will in my life?
But I have an excuse, after all, “I am so exhausted,” I think to myself. “I want to stay distracted, it has been a crud day at work… There is nothing like a good game of Trivia Crack on my iphone to get my mind off things.”
His word reminds us to stay alert. Lest that snake slithers in for a look…he may not strike right away but he will settle in, make his home quietly, and go in for the spiritual kill when we are not looking and at our weakest moment.
2 Corinthians 11:3 But I am afraid that just as Eve was deceived by the serpent’s cunning, your minds may somehow be led astray from your sincere and pure devotion to Christ.
Karl Marx once said that “religion is the opiate of the masses.” Well, his opinion of “religion” may actually be spot on, however God does not call us to practice religion, He asks us to pursue relationships…with Him and with others. Our new opiate is the single-minded pursuit of technology. It has taken the place of relationships and keeps us from the purpose of our presence here which is to serve God by serving others. We are being led astray – so be forewarned….
So sorry to be such a downer in this blog, but I personally have been convicted of this very thing lately…so may I just say perhaps we should all go to technology rehab? Just put the device down and walk away – and walk toward your friends, your loved ones and your Lord. He would rather sit and have a good chat with you any day. Besides, I don’t think God reads snap chat…LOL.