Life on Purpose
by Marie Drakulic
A dear friend of mine does not own a cell phone. She has a landline. Remember those? The phone you have to plug into the wall and stay in the house to use? She says cell phones take too much energy. Crazy, right? Well, maybe she isn’t so far off base.
I knew I had a problem when my email stopped working on my phone, and I actually had to go to the computer to read it. Oh no! Perish the thought! It was only a glitch in the server, and lasted only a couple of days. Still, I wasted hours fussing over this minor issue. Shortly after, words from 1 Corinthians began rolling around in my mind. “All things are lawful unto me, but I will not be brought under the power of any” (1 Corinthians 6:12, emphasis mine). Another translation uses the word mastered.
I suddenly realized my smart phone had mastered me. It was practically glued to me 24/7. At home, it followed me to every room. When I went out, it was in my hand, my purse (attached to my shoulder), or my pocket. It even ended up in bed next to my pillow at night. And when I listened to a sermon on fasting, I knew I needed some time “unplugged.”
I write this in the middle of a week away from my phone. Sure, I have used it to make ordinary calls, and a few times I have used my “smart apps,” but I have, with the Lord’s strength, denied myself from using it every waking moment.
Here are a few things I have learned:
My smart phone can’t do everything, and I can function without it.
Some people really do appreciate a phone call rather than a text message.
It is more important for me to enjoy spending time with my kids rather than making sure
I post about them.
I don’t need to reach for my phone before I reach for my Bible or pray in the morning.
My iPhone is not I Am.
Please do not misunderstand; I am not saying smart phones, tablets, or other advances in technology are bad. I am only saying my iPhone had become a god in my life. Wow! That is hard to write, even harder to admit. How could something so material and so breakable ever become greater than Him? Though a smart phone has many beneficial and practical uses, it had become a weight in my spiritual walk with the Lord.
Is something weighing you down today? Maybe you don’t struggle with a smart phone like I do. Maybe you struggle with food, television, or work. None of those things are wrong on their own, but when they distract from the Lord and become little gods in our lives, we have a problem. Remember what the writer of Hebrews said? “Let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us (Hebrews 12:1).
In a few days, my phone will become smart again, and I will plug back in. I pray I have learned to reap the benefits without letting it master me. God is God alone. May I always recognize that “every good and every perfect gift is from above” (see James 1:17) and meant for His glory…even smart phones!
About the Writer: Marie and Tony Drakulic are team members with Daryl Grimes, planting Flagship FWB Church in Erie Pennsylvania. Learn more at: www.flagshipchurch.com.