I can't hear myself think.
I am sure at some point or another in the past few years, you might have stopped to ask your self the question that none of us wants to come to terms with, "Am I spending too much time with my phone, computer, TV, internet, video game, ect...?" If no, you're amazing! If you've answered yes to that question, join the ranks!
Being that the Catholic Church has for many years advised moderation is a good thing, we can be certain that these things above are a blessings to us, if used in moderation for good, pure and honest purposes, such as:
1. Phones - can be used to call family and friends, far and near. Maybe you might be able to invite them to Mass? If not, it is always good to keep in contact to emulate the caring spirit of Christ. There are also great applications now that can help deepen our prayer life, like Laudaute from our previous post on Coffee and Donuts.
2. TV - there is nothing wrong with enjoying a good, clean Disney with the family, along with treats and a blanket. This can make for a great bonding experience for you and your family, which is always a great thing!
3. Internet - you can research, create, motivate, captivate and connect with the world if you like. Enough said. The possibilities are endless!
4. Video games - Nothing good comes from video games and all it will ever do is rot your brain. Kidding, once again most everyone enjoys an honest game of Mario Kart. Family bonding!
Now the con's
1. Phones - how many of us actually make a phone call? While texts, emails and Facebook can be great for sending messages that we otherwise couldn't or wouldn't say in person, it some how desensitizes us to normal human interactions. We are slowly losing all the social skills we learned in kindergarten, one text message at a time.
2. TV - We obviously know why TV is bad for us out of moderation and how it can be bad for us in moderation if we are not careful. Sometimes we are careful and can hear the Holy Spirit telling us that it is probably not appropriate but do we always listen? I read somewhere that the brain has the ability to record every second of your life. If this is true or not, I am not certain, but let's say it is. What if our brain was recording every second of our lives and all we watched was complete trash? How might that affect our subconscious over a period of years. What kind of person would that shape us into? This basically covers #3 & #4 as well. If we are not guarding our minds and soul for the good, someone may just take advantage of an opportunity. Don't give the evil one a second of chance!!
Another something I want to mention is MUSIC! Music can be very inspiring such as this song by Singer songwriter, Laura Story. It's about BLOWING it, basically, so if you've messed up on ANYTHING, especially the matters listed above, there is hope! it also speaks about being unfocused and at least for me, is a big struggle.
Okay - this being a great example of the type of music that can help to encourage and enlighten us, I am sure you can think of many that don't meet the mark of holiness. It doesn't mean that you have to have "Jesus music" blaring in your ear every time, it is just better to always be aware of the lyrics and not necessarily the beat. Better yet - unplug yourselves, turn off the radio and hang out in silence for a minute or two.
The following is this weeks personal challenge:
Pick one day this week and unplug. If you can take the whole day, maybe half or even a quarter of it. Begin with a prayer and give that time straight to God. Ask him to direct you. Offer your struggles with this topic up to him. I listened once to a Priest that is host of The Busted Halo Show Fr. Dave Dwyer speak about hearing God's voice and how to do it. To paraphrase he explained that in order to hear God's voice we first must recognize it. Like a friend over the phone. He said one place we can get to know God and what his voice sounds like is to talk to him frequently and to go to places where we KNOW God is speaking, such as,
If we are listening to his voice here in the scripture, we may be able to fine tune our ears to know our God and what his voice sounds like, so we aren't fooled by someone who TRIES to imitate God's voice, only to confuse us.
In closing, the whole purpose and message of this post is basically this, turn off or kick out any distractions that might prevent you from hearing the precious voice of God, whatever it takes!
Thanks for reading!
-What a great cup of Joe!