I have blogged since 2005, some 11 years
Tuesday, July 19, 2016
Sunday, April 24, 2016
Back in the day when Mathew and I first got a mobile phone we thought it was an innovation. Imagine being able to call him any time of the day, anywhere we were. What convenience! For us living an hour's commute from the city, driving a long stretch of freeway each day to work and back, we also thought it was a safety factor. We bought two handsets on a plan, got consecutive phone numbers which we have today - his number ends in 941, mine ends in 942 .. it works and we thought it was kind of neat.
But, the last couple of years or more really .. the "smartphone" has taken over. Each handset in our experience only last about two years. We are forced to upgrade and inevitably with each upgrade comes more features and innovation. It's good, inexpensive and still 'neat'. But the phone now is more of a computer, personal assistant, camera, calendar, banking device. You can probably name it and it does it. Hey, I think you can link the phone to turn your lights on at home and turn on the air conditioning or heat before you arrive when you've been out.
I have decided it is waaay too much in my hands, on my mind. Each time I reach for it, use it, they are legitimate reasons. To check my shopping list, to see if one of my children or Mathew need me. To transfer money in the bank, take a photo anywhere, anytime. Make a note to remember later, schedule a bill to be paid or an appointment in the calendar. Each of our email accounts come in on the phone. Each of the items we are bidding on on Ebay give alerts too. Even my favourite books are on there now. They are cheaper to buy as a download and the range is better than the local book store. And the list of reasons and usage goes on ....
"Muse" - to ponder, consider meditatively
"Amuse" - the opposite of "Muse" .
"Mobile" - capable of movement, easily moved or changed
I believe the original concept of the mobile phone has evolved and is something else now. Just another thing in this life to pre-occupy me, to amuse me. Something to keep me in a tight cycle of self interest in good things but self interest regardless. At its worst I'm talking temptation and idolatry. Sounds a bit overly serious and negative but I'm calling it. It's crook.
My heart has broken to see the looks on the little faces who can't speak for themselves in the prams and shopping trolleys because Mum or Dad are pre-occupied with this device in their hands, they aren't present, they aren't enjoying this moment, this child, this simple act of being together. They are caught up in the world on the screen, the conversation on the screen. Time for that later! Be in the now, the every day, the simple. This is where life happens! And then, I'll pick up mine! AAAaaagh.
In this world of social media we are more plugged in than ever. Yet we are more disconnected than any generation before us. True "mobile" is to be without hindrance, to have convenience so we can do more things, and do them better, and at once. Yet, this hasn't happened.
We want it all don't we? Convenience and more. It's never enough. A vicious cycle, an enveloping whirlpool dragging us down. Where to? Self. And something happens then. All others are somehow less, an irritation. It's called sin, we are all infected and contagious. We can be forgiven but we are not immune.
So, I'm going mobile but it isn't what you think. I'm giving myself a challenge and here it is:
I will go without this mobile phone for one week. When I go out, it will be in the bottom of my handbag, not in a handy side pouch. There for emergency if I run out of petrol etc., etc. When and if I hear that "ding" or other sounds that announce a message, an email, a notification, I'll ignore it. I will tell myself I'll be home in a while. I'll check in then. If I miss an important "can you get ..... while you are out" I miss it. The world won't stop. If I miss a how are you text from someone, I miss it. I'll say Hey! later probably within the hour. If there is an emergency I'm sure they'll call. I'll answer the call. I'll have my shopping list on a piece of paper.
After the week I'm going to report what I missed, what went differently or wrong but most importantly how it was for me with no phone in my hand, no intent on checking this or that, how my attitude to my family was, how my time was spent and then, what I'm going to do about it.
Thursday, February 11, 2016
How wise is this? It is so key that it isn't so much what we say as parents as what we do.
Our children watch us, we all watch something, allow ourselves to be influenced by some thing, person, culture, tradition etc. As people we love to follow something. Let's make sure our children are spending enough time with us to be able to watch us. To follow us. May we be worthy to be followed!
For me that means keeping close to my Lord God. Following His commands and precepts in grace and forgiveness which I find in Christ, alone.