They only cared about pleasing themselves in that desert,
    provoked God with their insistent demands.
He gave them exactly what they asked for—
    but along with it they got an empty heart.
Psalm 106 (MSG)

Technology is a gift. I’m thankful for it. Yet, I can easily become distracted by it. Going without it would be like farming with yesteryear’s machinery. Very slow. Maybe slowing down would be a good idea.

Today’s poems reflect the struggle I have to stay in control of the very precious gift of time. The questions I’m asking are first of all for myself. I hope they cause you, also, to think about your use of technology.

When God’s people, in the past,
Pleaded for unworthy goals
God gave them their desires
But sent famine to their souls.
We must be careful what we ask for
When we pray to Our Father;
If we’re set on having own way,
It’s better not to bother.
I felt unhappy with my phone
So I purchased an upgrade
As I waited for it to download,
My happiness began to fade.
That night I could not sleep.
I lay wide-eyed in my bed.
That new phone had injected
Too much data in my head.
I wonder if that upgrade
Was truly a wise choice;
With that phone as my companion,
Will I hear the Spirit’s voice?
With it help me access God?
Can I Zoom into his presence?
Will he appear on YouTube?
Will I miss him if he’s absent?
Jane Ault

Finding balance in this technological world
What should I keep?
What should I discard?
Finding balance in this technological world
I’m easily distracted.
I get caught off guard.
Finding balance in this technological world
What will cause me to lose?
What will bring a reward?  
Finding balance in this technological world
What should be kept private?
What should be shared?
Finding balance in this technological world
God, I need wisdom.
This really is hard.
Finding balance with my computer,
My phone,
Finding balance in this technological world
God, please help me.
I can’t do it alone
Jane Ault

12 Responses

  1. WOW!!
    Is that phone a tool to help us or does it it try to rule us?
    I usually know where mine is at all times and wonder if that’s a healthy way to be. It’s so easy to get on Facebook and loose an hour or two.
    I really appreciate you pointing out how precious our time is and how we are letting technology rob us of some of that irreplaceable time.
    Blessings on you dear friend.

    1. Thank you, Debbie, for your comment. The challenge of staying in charge of my phone, instead of the opposite, continues for me. Please keep me in your prayers.

      I love your sensitivity to truth and tender heart, dear friend.

  2. Great insights, Jane! and thank you for your sense of humor, in dealing with such a universal struggle. Appreciate the encouragement, and gentle exhortation. These tools definitely need good boundaries to keep from becoming toxic. Blessings!

    1. Thank you, Helenmary, for reading and commenting on my post.
      I hoped that everyone would recognize the humor as well as the wisdom in the words I wrote.

      When I got my new phone, I planned to use it primarily for taking photos, texting, and recording the poems/songs I compose during the day. Before I knew it, I was doing everything else!
      I’m praising God for his faithful and gentle correction.

  3. Jane, this is a timely meditation! I often have to counsel myself: JEAN! STOP SCROLLING! It’s more like yelling.

    I just read about a book Eugene Peterson recommends at the end of his excellent book, The Jesus Way. It’s about this concern for how technology involves us. Called Technology and the Character of Contemporary Life, Albert Borgmann. Peterson writes, “Borgmann. . . Is our most incisive analyst of the hidden iways in which technology disengages us from first-hand, personal engagement with things and people and thereby subverts the ways in which we ‘take up with the world” (his phrase).”
    Thank you, as always, Jane, for pointing us to important questions.

    1. Thank you, Jean. I’m glad I’m not alone in finding it challenging to disengage from the internet.

      Borgmann’s book sounds very interesting. Another person who notes trends/changes in society and their effect on us is Dr. Richard Swenson, author of “In Search of Balance”. In it, he writes ” Modernity is very good at a great many things, but not a single one connects to depth. . . we have no longitudinal attention span today. Instead, we have “continuous partial attention.” Technology has enhanced our productivity and simultaneously destroyed our depth.”

  4. Thank you for your thoughtful poem! It does take discernment and self-control and therefore I’m thankful that both are provided by the Holy Spirit, one as a gift, the other as fruit.
    A while back I uninstalled Facebook and Amazon from my phone. That way, I have to be on my Kindle Fire or my computer to access either one – which gives me greater self-control.
    I also added two apps to my phone, Pause (free) and Dwell (paid subscription). With Dwell, I can listen to scripture in a variety of voices at any time of day or night. Right now I’m going through the Pentateuch on their reading plan. There are also “Sleeping” plans that I can listen to as I doze off at night. I love that! It was a great investment. If I’m waiting in a doctor’s office I can plug in my earbuds and listen to the Psalms. There is background music of my choice as well as the option to pause and reflect between selections for 1 to 3 minutes as the music plays. It’s a wonderful addition to my phone because it goes with me wherever I go.
    Sorry for rambling! Anyway, Grace, I really enjoyed your poem and sharing.

    1. Dear Marjorie,
      Thank you for your comment. I feel encouraged by it. It helped me to hear ways that you manage your technology. No apology is necessary. Yes, discernment is a gift of the Spirit and self-control is a fruit of the Spirit, not something that’s instantly grown. How thankful I am for Jesus’s patience with me and his persistence.
      Thank you for your faithful example and for sharing your writing on Facebook.
      May you flourish!

  5. Jane,
    You were making me laugh because your comments are so VERY true!! I could totally relate!! At times the choices and distractions can be overwhelming!! And can be and sometimes is a deterrent with my walk with the Lord!!

    Causing me to think about it!!

    1. I’m glad you could find humor in it as well as truth, Sherry. Thanks for letting me know.
      I appreciate your honesty.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.