Posted by: Justin Wallace | August 2, 2010

I Have a Confession :: Turn it off!

“Step out of the traffic! Take a long, loving look at me, your High God…Be still and know that I am God.” [psalms.46v10 NIV & MSG]

7:45AM.

My alarm goes off.

I role over and hit the snooze button.

I fall back asleep for 10 minutes and then my alarm sounds again.

It’s the alarm on my iphone…

So, first thing in the morning I pick up my phone, slide it unlocked and click my email…Check my Facebook…See what I missed on Twitter during the unproductive hours of sleep and then I role out of bed to take a shower.

Hello my name is Justin and I’m a cell phone-holic.

I start my day off with noise and it sets the tone for the rest of the day.

As I pick up my phone first thing in the morning I feel the tension enter my shoulders and feel the tightness around my eyes.

Is this really the best way to start a new day?

The answer is simple, NO!

Is this really the way that God created me to live and move and breath?

NO!

But here’s the problem…I don’t know how to break the destructive cycle.

Well ok I do…and I’ve tried but I always revert back…I fail and then, like a dog returning to his vomit, I revert back to the destructive cycle.

While I’m at it let me just give you a picture of how bad it is…

I sleep with my phone next to my bed…why? Just in case someone MUST get in touch with me in the middle of the night.

I wake up and the first thing I do is check my phone.

While I’m doing my “quiet” time my phone sits next to me on my deck…just in case.

While I’m in a meeting…my phone is on and most of the time out…just in case.

While I’m at dinner my phone is within arms reach.

While I’m playing baseball with my son my phone is in my pocket.

While I’m spending time with my wife my phone is in my hand.

Just before I go off to sleep…I check my phone just to be sure.

I have a problem!

Does anyone feel me?

I’m guessing too many of you know exactly what this is like.

We have no idea how to just TURN IT OFF!

And honestly it’s killing us slowly.

I don’t have an answer. I don’t have a “how to”. I just wake up every day and start over.

For instance this morning was a small victory. I didn’t check my Facebook, Twitter or Email before I got to the office. This is my goal every morning…but most mornings I’m too tired to fight the temptation…so I mindlessly start clicking.

One of my favorite books of all time is Intimacy with the Almighty by Charles Swindoll.

One of the sections is about the Spiritual Discipline of silence. I want to leave us this morning with some words from Swindoll…take them as an encouragement to practice times of TURNING IT OFF!

“…Just imagine the challenge you face in this world of restlessness, noise, words, and relentless activity, to develop the discipline of silence. Personally, I have found this to be an almost insurmountable challenge. I’ve realized its magnitude more in the past two years than ever before in my life. Yet, I am more convinced than ever that there is no way you and I can move toward a deeper, intimate relationship with our God without protracted times of stillness, which includes one of the rarest of all experiences: absolute silence.”

“What about you? Do you find yourself victimized by the noisy, busy, over-crowded world in which you must spend many hours of your life? Is it leaving you spiritually insensitive, sort of a business-as-usual attitude toward the church you attend or the Bible study you used to enjoy? How about prayer? Noise and crowds have a way of siphoning our energy and distracting our attention, making prayer an added chore rather than a comforting relief. You may even feel a low-grade depression sweep over you as the absence of stillness and silence takes its toll. If so, it is time for some straight talk. Nobody can do anything about that dilemma but you! Allow it to continue, and you will gravitate into one of two directions. Either you will run through the motions and cultivate a hypocritical spirituality hidden behind the mask of phony enthusiasm, or you will simply fad from involvement and distance yourself from meaningful relationships with other Christians. In both cases, you will set yourself up for a fall. I have seen it happen more often than I want to recall. It is easy for us to be sucked into a sort of black hole of activities in these hurried times.”

May you and I learn to practice the discipline of silence. May you and I learn to disconnect from the noise for periods of time so we can connect with our God, our spouses and our children. And for the sake of our souls may you and I learn to TURN IT OFF!

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Responses

  1. […] confessed a few weeks ago that he is a cell phone-holic. Today I am confessing that I am a […]


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