How I Think about Technology
As I was washing dishes yesterday morning, cleaning up the kitchen from the post Easter dinner/psanky making festivities mess, I propped my phone on the window sill and set it to play my devotional reading out loud. I have a love/hate relationship with my phone. I never wanted a smart phone, I had a $25 flip phone from Target that worked just fine but I also kept losing it, letting it run out of power, and forgetting to recharge the minutes. Mike couldn't stand the stress of calling me at the farm and not getting an answer and never knowing if that was because there was an emergency or I had just run out of minutes again. So. when he upgraded his phone he gave me his old phone.
It can take pictures, pretty nice ones! I can use it to take video of the farm while I work, excellent! I can text and receive texts, bonus! But it is an expensive piece of technology that (while I am always aware of where it is or should be) if it gets misplaced, weeping/gnashing of teeth! Once it jounced out of my pocket while mowing a loop around the pasture (8 acres!) STRESS! But it turned up unharmed, hooray! It can be a distraction, why am I checking the news again? It divides people into separate little pods of personal entertainment, ignoring each other and wonderful opportunities to share life, real life not the virtual kind.
But I have a very strong belief that rejection of new technology is not the way, nor is unthinking incorporation. Rather, I believe that each new technology is a fabulous opportunity for the body of Christ to think, pray and engage about what is important and what are the implications that we can see from this technology. Then as we use it what are the unexpected consequences that we need to adjust to. My phone is not an escape hatch from uncomfortable personal interactions and silence. If I use it to fill all the gaps in my day, when can God speak to me? When does the beautiful serendipity of life have a shot at surprising me?
More thoughts next post...