Who’s that hiding behind the screen?

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The other day having a coffee a group of college students walked in and took a seat, without a word they took their phones out and scrolled for a few minutes. Then they started chatting; it was as if the phone was protection, used to fuel the conversation, when it got going the phones went down for a few minutes, then it was back to the phones.

This pattern seemed to continue on repeat.

Technology is amazing, but for many, it’s the screen they hide behind.

Have we got so afraid of who we are that we need facebook, snapchat and other apps to fuel our conversations?

It got me questioning what are we searching for in all these apps? Is it meaning, is it approval, is it acceptance?

For me, life is about connecting with people; it’s about listening, it’s about helping each other.

We all crave attention we all want to be accepted by others, so much so that sometimes we can forget the only relationship that matters. Our relationship with God.

The problem with our spiritual connection is, it’s subtle. So subtle that many take it for granted. Plus it takes relaxation, calmness and peace and when do we have time for that?

I have nothing against technology; only for it I would not be talking to you today, but it’s so important that we take time to switch it off.

When I started to do this, I found myself feeling very sleepy and often fell asleep. Smartphones laptops and tv continuously stimulates the mind; it’s unable to rest. Over weeks and months, it can wear you down.

When you don’t give your mind a rest, all the tension and stress builds up, which can lead to illness and pain.

If you feel overwhelmed at this time, I highly recommend trying the following. Take time today, whatever you can spare and close your eyes.

Feel the world around you, the noises, the sensations in your body, feel Gods presence and know that you are loved, and accepted.

Be still with no distractions. It could be in the form of prayer, a walk in nature, or a lay down on your bed.

When you give yourself this time stress, and tension will subside, you will see problems and difficulties from a new perspective.

Done regularly you will see significant changes in your life.

Take-a-Break

I have a no phones rule when I meet a friend for coffee or lunch. One to one meetings gives others an opportunity to open up to you with anything that might be troubling or worrying them. Continually checking notifications can come across that you’re not interested in what a friend is saying, and this is not an impression I want to give.

Remove the screens and have more profound connections.

Thanks for reading.
Rev J Martin

 

 

 

 

Is technology taking the upper hand?

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The world is speeding up; no one wants to wait. I am showing my age, but I remember when it would take minutes for the Internet to load. Dial up. The younger generation could not last one day of my childhood, but then again I don’t think I could last a day in theirs.

Often I go for coffee and see a group of friends sitting looking at their phones, occasionally chatting to one another about what someone has posted on Facebook or Snap chat. Sitting at the same table but miles apart.

Is spending time with friends not about spending time with friends?

I am all for technology as a tool, but it is starting to take the upper hand.

Even the way we pay has changed. Now there is contactless, where you can pay by just hovering your card over the card reader. When the assistant asked me the other day, do you want to go contactless?

It dawned on me, that’s what the world is slowly becoming; contact less.

Communication is getting faster, but people are drifting apart. Where is God in all this? Sadly on the sidelines; only to be called on if something goes wrong.

With constant notifications popping up every few minutes, I know too well how hard it is to pull yourself away.

What can we do, well, like all change it starts with you.

It’s so important to take time each day to connect with nature; leave the phone on silent for a while. You will be surprised at what a difference it will make.

When the mind and body is relaxed, pain and tension subside. An idea can come out of nowhere to solve a problem that has been stressing you out for some time.

Even in the writing of this, I realize that I need to take my own advice. There is always something to do; even when I am resting my mind is always active.

It’s a mental break that is needed.

With constant stimulation from morning to night, you can push yourself for weeks and even months without noticing, you are slowly getting run down; to the point that pain or illness sets in.

God has a way of slowing us down; it is for our benefit in the long term— although, it may not seem that way at the time.

Unaware that it is self-inflicted, we go to the doctor, and he gives us some pills, resetting the balance for while.

Then a holiday comes in just the nick of time, but instead of being full of energy to go on adventures and visit friends near and far, we fall exhausted and spend most of the week in bed.

Take a mental break from the madness, start connecting face to face; turn off from the world, and see the difference it can make.

Enjoy your weekend and don’t forget father’s day.

Rev J Martin