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The Age of Electronics

by Roy Platt

Today’s generation is defining its soul by the latest electronic handheld whatever it is.  In one little electro-magnetic gadget is your phone, your camera (stills and movies), your stereo player and dictation recorder.  You get the weather, news, sports, stock reports, a satellite view of your house, and a GPS feature that can tell you how to get to wherever, from wherever, on the planet. 

     You can type, text, read and/or hear a novel, or the Bible, and the Koran (for political correctness), video conference, and tell everyone you just got out of the shower and are now brushing your teeth on a social networking internet website (plus the latest craze of sending out a portrait of your birthday suit).  If you are ignorant of Face Book you are really stuck in the stone age (about 20 years ago).  Twitter???

   Kids 5 (and under) can handle this kind of mental multitasking overload.  Infants can do more than just boil water when it comes to internet ‘surfing’ while navigating with no instructions.  Like newborn wildlife they instinctively know how to navigate through any of the aforementioned stuff without burning up a single brain cell.  (My bald spot gets bigger and I get a brain freeze every time I hit ‘Enter’). 

       Tech stuff is now engrained into the DNA of this current generation (show them a rotary phone and it will absolutely short circuit their binary alphabetized 10 key brain wave).  This generation is wired up, electrically charged, lightning fast, fiber optically entrenched, connected to who knows how many ‘friends’.  To get their attention you must enter through the ear plugs (only God alone knows what they’re listening to). What you just found out a while ago was light-speeded to hundreds, if not thousands, in a ‘friends’ network.  And it goes the other way too.  Once your private info hits the electronic hi-way by the time you blink your eye one and a half times your stuff is all across the globe via satellite, fiber optic cable, AT&T, even Magic Jack. 

       I’m sawing logs at 11pm when my cell phone rings.  A desperate voice on the other end is wanting to talk over confusing life issues and requested my presence in 30 minutes at my office.  I say OK (you’re suppose to, you’re the preacher).  At 11:30 I’m sitting down with a bereft confused individual (doesn’t know what to do, say, think, depressed…etc).  In between tearful paragraphs I try to sound reassuring and give advice as is appropriate.  But, in between my sentences I hear continuous beeps from that persons phone signaling that a message has just been received.  Every time the phone beeped I was told to ‘hold on’, ‘wait a minute’, ‘hold that thought’, ‘excuse me’, and so on.  On the other end was someone that needed this persons immediate response (evidently).  Right when I thought we could have a decent conversation ‘beep’ goes the confusee’s phone.  I was instructed to wait while a response was made.  After texting I was then given permission to pick up where I left off ( if I could remember).  The cycle of ‘talk-beep-wait-talk-beep-wait’ plowed no progress. I was fighting a loosing battle.  The ‘beeps’ held more controlling attention than my physical presence and words of advice. 

    MORAL:  Todays personal socialized connected electronic network holds more reality than the companionship of a real person.  Proverbs 27:10 “Better a neighbor nearby than a brother far away.”  The church has its hands full in convincing this generation a caring human touch is better than the latest ring tone. 

 

               Roy Platt is minister of the Jennings Church of Christ, Jennings, LA.

 




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That is why, for Christ's sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.

2 Corinthians 12:10