January 2 I Sunday
“‘I have the right to do anything,’ you say—but not everything is beneficial. ‘I have the right to do anything’—but not everything is constructive.”
—1 Corinthians 10:23
Some significant culture-shifting moments are taking place in our society. We have seen remarkable innovations spring up over the last hundred years. I tried to describe to my children what life was like before the digital age, because I grew up with the onset of technology. I remember the first computer coming into my classroom in grade 8. It was this giant machine that sat in the room. Who knew that it would shape the future of a generation?
I explained to my kids that the first computers had to use these giant floppy discs to save your work. Even though they were almost like a huge vinyl record player, they had very limited memory. For the internet, I told them that it used to come through the telephone cord, which had to be unplugged from the phone and then plugged into the computer; it used a dial-up modem. When the first cell phones came out, they were like the size of a McDonald’s Big Mac box. We almost had to hold it with two hands because they were so big. As I was telling my children all of this, they were looking at me with eyes that said they were probably thinking, “Were dinosaurs walking around when you were going through all this in your childhood? Like, did you have to write with chalk on a chalkboard, or did you learn on a typewriter?”
Much is changing rapidly thanks to technology. Currently, Apple, Amazon, Microsoft and Facebook are among the top 10 largest corporations globally. These technological giants are a part of our everyday lives. From research and studies, it shows that as we integrate more with technology, it is literally rewiring how our minds work.
As we have relied immensely on technology in this pandemic, it is important to pause and take an inventory of life. We need to ask ourselves where technology is enhancing and helping our lives, but also areas where it may be leading us to unhelpful places and spaces.
For example, during the pandemic, churches were able to meet in many locations mediated through technology. However, worshipping online should not replace our need to do life together. Hebrews 10:24-25 tells us, “And let us consider how we may spur one another on towards love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.” May we seek wisdom from God to discern how we should navigate our lives with the technologies around us.
Prayer: Dear God, thank You for technology that has helped enhance my life. I ask that you give me a discerning mind to know when technology has, instead, become a hindrance to drawing closer to You.