Cecelia is playing with a new basketball team this year.  The girls have been wonderful, but don’t know much about C or her large family.  At practice the other night, they asked her for her cell number so they could create a group chat.  C replied that she didn’t have a phone. Gasp! One girl remarked, “How do you live without a phone?!”  C responded, “I have a lot of siblings.”


I know C did not practice this exchange, it just happened.  I am proud of her though. It was a simple and perfect answer.  


Tate and I have been blessed to have a few days away with just Thomas in the Smokies.  One thing that happens very quickly as you drive into the park is a loss of cell phone reception.  You are disconnected. It is wonderful. Instead, your senses are filled with the beauty of your surroundings.  The sound of the streams. The majesty of the mountains. Perfection.


As you hike, your time is filled with much silence.  You are left with your own thoughts. Of course, Tate and I had plenty of conversations on our hikes - but most of the time we enjoyed the peace and tranquility of God’s creation.  It has been lovely.


If we don’t take that time for silence we can never listen for God speaking in our lives.  We simply move from one activity to another. It is entirely too easy to do. I know, I live it.  But what happens when we never take that time, serious time for silence? We become set in our ways, we hike along looking only at our feet never taking the time to stop and look around.   Are we even going in the right direction, or have we gotten lost along the way? Are we headed to something dangerous for ourselves and our family?


A couple weeks ago we were at the zoo.  We were in the Bird House and Mary was looking at me and said, “Mom, where are the penguins?  There are no penguins!” I told her to turn around, they were right behind her. Aha! The light!  What she was seeking required a simple turn in direction.


We are tempted with many distractions in today’s world.   I can tell you from personal experience that if you get rid of some of these luxuries/distractions that people think are necessities, you and your family is rewarded.   Disconnect. Unplug. Get rid of cable TV. Show your children how to do it by your own example. Our children should be outside playing with their siblings and friends, not attached to a screen.  We and our children should spend some time each day in silence. This is a colossal problem in our world. A lack of true personal relationships. A lack of a personal relationship with Christ.


What are we missing that is right behind us like Mary in the Bird House?   What is God trying to say to us that we cannot hear because we haven’t taken the time to disconnect?  Challenge yourself and your family to live more simply. Technology can be a great gift, but it is too often a hindrance to our relationships with each other and God.  JMJ