“With so much of life tied up in my constant connectivity, I started to expect everything to always involve my phone. If I wasn’t using my phone, I felt like I wasn’t doing anything.” – Adam Jeske
EXPLORE | Are You ‘Using’?
Why is it we can’t seem to quit the non-stop ‘iPhone arm curls’ at all times of the day? No matter where we are: Pick up phone. Lift to face. Repeat. For some of us, it would require a herculean effort to even skip just a few ‘reps.’
I believe that those of us who are ‘using’ essentially fall into two groups: there is the ‘what did they say now? how about now?’ group and the ‘gotta git ‘er done’ group. The first group is more or less those that need to know the latest, as it happens–and keeps happening. The second group consists of those that can’t seem to stop trying to be productive. Every little gap in their day is seen as an opportunity to ‘get better’ or ‘do more.’ After all, that is why God invented waiting in line, right? And then there are those that have it far worse, and find themselves in both groups. They’re taking it in, AND pumping it out.
I’ve been fortunate to escape the first group, but with feeling like there is “so much to do” find myself solidly in the latter. Either way, it may be in our best interest if we ask ourselves: Could how I’m using my device be considered… an addiction?
EXECUTE | Consider the Spiritual Implications
In his article on tech addiction, Adam Jeske raises the concern of spiritual consequences as one thing that needs to be considered. Which should be our highest concern, as the detriment of which will be felt far and wide… and deep.
“We know we can’t serve both God and money (Matthew 6:24). Maybe we need to start asking ourselves if we can serve both God and Facebook.” – Adam Jeske
I want to highlight two of the passages he directs us to as we evaluate the impact of our use of ‘tech’:
Philippians 4:8 – “Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things.”
“How often is our time on Facebook [et, al] helping us to think about whatever is true, noble, right, pure, lovely, admirable, excellent and praiseworthy, as we are encouraged to do in Philippians 4:8?”
On one hand, this question helps keep us from dwelling on things that are not profitable (1 Cor. 10:23). But on other hand, it could at the same time actually be used to focus on what is true, noble and excellent. There may be very good reasons for you to spend less time with your device, but when it is used, could it not also be used to memorize a quote, recall a point from a sermon, or let a verse of Scripture seep in more deeply?
This of course will require us to be very honest with ourselves. But I wouldn’t want us just to think that ‘phone is bad’ and try to cut ourselves off. It can be used for good. And during the transition from constantly looking at it for the wrong reasons, we can build in ways that the default becomes those things that truly benefit us.
Psalm 46:10 – “Be still [cease striving] and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.”
“Is our constant connectivity keeping us from being still and knowing God is God?”
When I’m humming along bangin’ out emails, approving copy, or reviewing campaign strategy, it can easily begin to feel like I am master of my domain. But alas, we are not called to be. We’re called to be stewards. And as such, we need to do what is asked of us by carefully managing both time and responsibility. However, we wouldn’t know what to do, and when, without listening. Being still has so many benefits, not the least of which will allow us to be reminded of our place–and God’s.
We’re called to watch over our hearts–with all diligence (Prov. 4:23). Considering the spiritual implications of our ‘love’ for our devices is a good place to start.
[Original article: the spiritual consequences of tech addiction]