Cell Sin

Iphone
Mark Driscoll went on vacation, and learned about "Cell Sin"–the sin of allowing one’s cell phone to dominate one’s life. Great food for thought–especially for those of us prone to this particular vice.

Being unplugged from my technology also made me more aware of how
much lords over us as a beeping, ringing, and vibrating merciless
sovereign god. I was grieved when I went to the pool every day with my
kids to swim and play catch in the water and looked around the pool
only to see other parents not connecting with their children at all but
rather talking on their cell phones and dinking around on their
handheld mobile devices while sitting in lounge chairs. When we went
out for meals we saw the same thing. Parents with children were
commonly interrupted throughout the meal by their technology and spent
more time talking on the phone than to their family. To make matters
worse, these people were actually quite loud and were incredibly
annoying to the rest of us who do not want to hear whether or not their
friend Hank’s nasty inner thigh rash had cleared up.

Sadly, the trend continued even late into the evenings. At night my
kids like to go for bike rides and walks before heading off to bed so
we spent our nights doing just that. At the resort where we stayed, it
was amazing how many other families were doing the same, but the
parents were not speaking to their children but rather chatting on the
phone via their wireless headset (which I keep expecting to include an
option to be surgically implanted into one’s head between their ears
since there is apparently a lot of extra space there).

A recent article confirmed this is actually a tragic national trend
and a cell sin to be repented of. An AP-Ipsos poll found that one in
five people toted laptop computers on their most recent vacations,
while 80 percent brought along their cell phones. One in five did some
work while vacationing, and about the same number checked office
messages or called in to see how things were going. Twice as many
checked their email, while 50 percent kept up with other personal
messages and voice mail. Reasons vacationers performed work-related
tasks included an expectation that they be available, a worry about
missing important information, or in some cases the enjoyment of
staying involved (Source: Associated Press, June 1, 2007, http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/18983920/).

I know in years past I too have been guilty of these same digital
sins against God, my family, and my own well-being. Now that I see it
as a sin that destroys silence, solitude, fellowship, prayerful
listening, and meaningfully and attentive friendship, I am deeply
convicted that there is a new spiritual discipline of fasting from
technology to be mastered. In this way, we can enjoy the life and
people that God puts in front of us rather than ignoring them while we
peck away with our thumbs and chat about nothing, which in the end is
rarely as important as the people we are ignoring all around us.

Dr. Tim Spivey is Lead Planter of New Vintage Church in San Diego, California. He is the author of numerous articles and one book, "Jesus: The Powerful Servant." A sought after speaker for events, Tim also serves as Adjunct Professor of Religion at Pepperdine University. Tim serves as a church consultant, and his writings are featured on ChurchLeaders.com, Church Executive magazine, Faith Village, Sermon Central, and Giving Rocket.

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