Notes from the Church lady: Good idea to take breaks from technology

"Teach me, O LORD, the way of thy statues…"

Technology is a wonderful thing which makes life easier for us (most of the time). Typing this column is much easier than writing it with pen and paper, and sending it by email is much easier, except the times one's computer fails to cooperate. When I started writing this column almost 20 years ago, I had to go to the office, type it out on the computer, print it out, and paste it on the template that would become the printed page. Now it is a matter of sending it out through email where new methods make it much easier for everyone.

The other day I was thinking back to a time in high school when I thought I would become a secretary. I took all the necessary courses in office procedures using machines like the mimeograph, dictaphone, and an adding machine with rows and rows of numbers that was so heavy it almost outweighed me. The only thing slowing me down was my limited shorthand resulting in barely passing the class.

I also focused on research in high school and spent countlesss hours in the library searching for material in magazines, books, and especially encyclopedias. Half of the fun was learning where to find the necessary material. Today I still enjoy researching through old newspapers and other documents.

Fast forward to the classes of today with computers replacing so many methods of the past. The Internet is the new source of information and is only a click away. I too am caught up in this technology with the ability to find information in a matter of minutes. I am especially enamored with various Bible translations and concordances at my finger tips.

However, there comes a time when nothing can replace an open Bible on my lap far from all the technologies of the world. Although I am guilty of not doing it as often as I should, some of my best times with the Lord is when I get away from all fo the modern distractions and spend time alone. It is during those times I am listening more to what the Lord has to say to me. It is as though the Lord is telling me to slow down and get back on the right track.

I heard about families who take a break from technology. They turn off their computers, cell phones, and televisions and spend time talking together, and playing old-fashioned games. Now I realize this is a bit radical, but it is possible to modify this concept, especially during the summer months. Mark and I often retreat to the front porch on summer evenings and spend time discussing the events of the day. Sometimes we simply sit in silence watching the beauty of a sunset. It is such a relaxing way to end the day.

Are you willing to take a break from technology or is your iPod and cellphone glued to you? What about taking a break from Facebook? It is important to remember technology is there to help us, not make us slaves. I have purposly left out Bbile verses this time as a challenge to find relevant ones that speak just to you. Are you up to such a damatic experience of a break from technology? What are you willing to do to provide more time alone with the Lord?

Debra Whittington is a longtime resident of Tucumcari. Contact her at:

dawhittington@msn.com

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