suspect many of you have had the same experience that I am about to describe.
You got to church and listen to a sermon and you’d swear the preacher has been
reading your mail or listening in on your conversations.
“How’d he know
I’ve been thinking about that very thing?” you ask yourself. Truth to tell, he
didn’t, but his message that day was broad enough to cover just about everyone
sitting out in those pews listening to him speak.
week our pastor held up a cell phone and made this statement. “This thing will
kill your family.” That got our attention. How can a cell phone kill our family
we all wondered? But he went on to explain.
We have become a society that
lives with this device in our hands far too much. We cannot concentrate on our
work, our family; ourselves without constantly looking at it to see if anyone
has called or have we missed speaking with anyone. Often obviously ignoring the
people we are in contact with at the time. How many times have we been with someone
who is either texting to someone while we are having a conversation or who stops
our conversation to grab some personal call that you can tell isn’t that important?
How many times have we done this ourselves without even thinking about how this
looks to those around us?
Our lives are being controlled by technology
and so called ‘social contact’ programs. I know people who chronicle their entire
lives with 140 character messages on Twitter. Who cares if they are going to get
a cup of coffee or going to get their car washed? I don’t and I suspect a lot
of other people could care less as well, but it’s the ‘in’ thing and there are
those lemmings that will follow the leader no matter how high the cliff. Then
there is ‘Facebook’ ….a program used by millions who are competing to see how
many ‘friends’ they can sign up. I have one of these accounts and I get so-called
friend requests from people I’ve never heard of or want to be friends with. Why
do I care about someone in Boise that I don’t know and will never meet? Why waste
my time reading about their lives?
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying
these things are all bad, but when they begin to take time away from the real
people in our lives, it’s time to take control of ourselves. How many times have
you been out to dinner and observed a couple with their two kids sitting at a
table close to you. The kids are playing some kind of video game or have a Game
Boy working the entire course of the meal. The parents are not talking to the
kids and the kids aren’t talking to the parents. Who learns from this experience?
No one, that’s who. The parents are at a loss as to what is happening in their
kids lives and the kids aren’t gathering any wisdom or shared experiences from
Our preacher pointed out that thirty five and forty year
old men who are playing softball risk more than injuring themselves, they are
possibly injuring their families as well. There is no senior league for them.
If they are playing sports and ignoring their wives and kids, they need to rethink
their priorities. There are only so many hours in any given day.
time you add in all of the time we spend with relationships in our family, friends,
work, school, neighbors, charity and yes, our church….we can get pretty strung
out with our time can’t we? There doesn’t seem to be many hours left in the day
for a lot of things, including ourselves. We get so busy wrapped up in staying
in touch with others that oftentimes we hardly know that we have eliminated any
time for ourselves or those closest to us.
Take a deep breath, grab a
glass of cold tea, ice water or beer and just sit quietly by yourself for a few
minutes. Don’t answer the phone, turn that computer off. Take that Ipod out of
your ears and just let your brain coast downhill for awhile. Think about all of
the good things in your life, forget the bad, concentrate on the people living
in your house. You’ll be a better person for it, I guarantee it.
Comments go to firstname.lastname@example.org
From North America - August 5, 2009 column
in 80 newspapers
| TE Online Magazine | Columns