Once upon a time there was a different world. A world where kids actually played with one another, television didn’t exist, and just listening to the radio was a big deal. Then came 500 satellite channels, cell phones, the internet, and what everyone must now have “the smart phone.” Slowly but surely the world changed from having real encounters to only knowing someone’s Facebook profile. This world has taken me and my family downstream, just like millions of others. However, I’m trying my best to paddle back towards things I hope never fade away.
#1 Communicate Face To Face. I’ve learned over time that you can’t really get to know someone’s heart through an email or Facebook profile. Times may have changed, but the need for communicating face to face never will. There are many times where you need to see a person’s body language, look into their eyes, and here the truth spoken with love. You need to receive or share a hug in person. I’ve learned over time that one of the most powerful things still is a “ministry of presence.” God did not create us to be robots hidden behind a computer screen, but real people who share real relationships.
#2 Set Healthy Boundaries. Social media is a great thing when used for great purposes. On the other hand, we all know its potential to consume our world. Haven’t you been in that room where everyone is either on their cell phone, smart phone, computer, or watching the next “must see” television show. There is no actual interaction inside the room because we’re all consumed with man-made gadgets. The things we call necessity can easily become wedges between us. We have to create times where we put our devices down and just enjoy quality conversation and moment together. Otherwise, we’re just taking up space together in the same house.
#3 Get Outside. In case you’ve forgotten, God has created a beautiful world for us to enjoy. Better than reality television or the next internet post. What happened to getting outside and breathing in fresh air? What’s not to like about building a fire, roasting marsh mellows, and sharing scary or funny stories with each other? Technical gadgets can be great resources and venues for keeping in touch with long distance friends and family. But, when they get in the way of really living they have only created a make believe world.
I guess what motivated me to write this is my own personal conviction. God doesn’t want us living as some internet character, but with character. God didn’t create us to just exist around one another, but relate with one another. I often wonder if future generations will really know what to do if they lose power and have no way of recharging their smart phones. God did not create us to be robots hidden behind a computer screen, but real people who share real relationships. We have to create times where we put our devices down and enjoy quality moments together. Otherwise, we’re just living in a make believe world.