I won’t be celebrating Christmas in the presence of my children or grandchildren this year. One daughter and her family are traveling to a vacation spot outside the country. John and I had a wonderful telephone conversation with them, yesterday. On Christmas Day, we will be talking with our other daughter and family who, like us, will be hosting Christmas dinner for family and friends.

Phone calls and texting provide wonderful ways to connect. Nevertheless, it is limiting. How does an emoticon hug feel compare to a real hug? I like receiving them. Yet, something is missing. I long and wait for the day when real hugs can be exchanged.

Text and photos mean a lot to me. I like sending them and receiving them.  How do they compare to the words spoken by the flesh-and-blood person who’s standing in my presence? I enjoy the texts and pictures; yet, something is missing. I long and wait for the times when that flesh-and-blood loved one is in my presence and we can converse together.

Although our children and grandchildren will not be present at our dinner table on Christmas Day, John and I will not be sitting alone. We’ve invited friends, who like us, will for some reason be missing face-to-face family connections.

Perhaps today’s poem expresses my thoughts regarding connection more effectively than the above paragraphs. I hope you, my readers and friends, will not take it as a complaint. (That’s where limitations of the internet kick in.

We all sit alone
With our tablets and our phones
And think we are connected
But when face to face
Our anxieties increase
And we retreat in silence
God, what do you see?
Is this all there’s meant to be?
Or is there something better?
We all sit alone
With our tablets and our phones
And say,” we are connected”.
But emoticons don’t touch
Or tell us very much
About what’s deep within us
Gradually we lose
Our abilities, unused
Our brains become rewired
We all sit alone
With our tablets and our phones
And pretend we’re connected.

God, what do you think?
Is there something out of sync?
Do I, alone, perceive it?
As I sit alone
With my tablet and my phone
And declare, “I’m connected.”
Jane Ault

I truly appreciate each one of you and pray that you will have a wonderful Christmas. Let us rejoice in God’s grace and seek the help of the Holy Spirit to connect with him who in the form of Jesus made a face-to-face, flesh and blood connection with humanity over 2000 years ago and has promised to come again.

9 Responses

  1. Jane: I pray you have a wonderful Christmas and get to hug all your loved ones in person very soon. I prefer the “real thing” too. I even prefer phone to texting. At least there is some human connection. Blessings for a wonderful day tomorrow.

  2. What a timely post, Jane! Your poetic thoughts are so good! We love you and John and wish you the very best in 2019! Your family at New Hope is huge!!

    1. Thanks, Diane! John and I love you, too, and are so happy that we are still a part of New Hope. God bless you and your family with a joy-filled Christmas!

  3. Thank you, Jane, for sharing this poem. I know I feel this way. Internet connections are not the same as the real thing.

    Our daughter, Naomi, came home the other day to celebrate Christmas with us. We had a chance meeting with some friends in the airport and were conversing with them, but as soon as I saw Naomi, I had to run over to her and give her a big hug. It was if the whole world vanished for that second and all I could see was my child. I can’t hug her like that over the internet.

    It reminded me of God’s love for us. If I love my daughter like that, just think of how much more God loves us!

    I hope you and John have a very Merry Christmas!

    1. Sandy, you have such a beautiful way of expressing your heart. I love how you described the second you saw your daughter, Naomi, and connected this event with how God loves us. May God bless you with a wonderful Christmas.

  4. Love this poem.
    Merry Christmas to you and John
    Casey and family, Alex, 15; Sam, 13; Thomas, 10: are visiting her husband’s family in Brazil.
    We’ll spend it with Joel and his family, Isabella, 10; Isaac, 6: Leo, 2;
    Enzo, 1 month!! Last one totally unexpected. Laura had fertility treatments for first 3, then Enzo showed up au naturale. God is in control!

    1. Thanks, Pat.
      Merry Christmas to you and Sil.
      What a wonderful heritage God has given you, with your son, Joel, and your daughter, Casey.
      Laura has JohnHenry, 16; Brendan and Maggie, 14; and Emma, 13.
      Carrie has Ruby, almost 15, and Charles, 12.

    2. Merry Christmas, Pat! It’s good to get a glimpse of your family at holiday time! Much love to you all!
      Diane and Don Romlein

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