I’ve been reading The Next Story by Tim Challies, which is a well-researched, well-thought-through, biblical critique of our culture and its over-immersion in “tech.” We often worship, and are ruled by the devices and the technology we created to serve us, irony of ironies.
I’d really like to post a few quotes from the book once I finish it (I’m almost done). But reading the book has inspired me to think a lot more about the role technology plays in my life, and to do something about it. More times than I would even like to admit, my wife has called me out when I’ve been checking email or Twitter from my phone while she or the kids have been trying to talk to me. I don’t like it when this happens, and I think it’s healthy to feel guilt at neglecting my most important relationships for the sake of a little feed of information on my iPhone.
So what to do: I’m coming up with a few “Tech Resolutions” to help myself stay committed to the things that matter the most, while still keeping my iPhone around. Here are the resolutions I’ve settled on so far:
1. Resolved: to think deeply about all areas of my life, and how they fit into a life of God-exalting worship. This includes the use of technology and attention given to digital media. What purpose do these things serve in my life, either aiding or leading away from worship?
2. Resolved: to simplify wherever possible, and devote more attention and care to fewer things. I find, as Challies says in his book, that sometimes my knowledge risks becoming a mile wide and an inch deep. I’m going to try to keep my attention on fewer books, and check my Twitter feed less often. Here’s to living more richly.
3. Resolved: to resist checking Twitter, email, or anything else while my family is engaged together at home, and to stop when my wife or kids say anything to me while I’m using a digital device. And if I have to make use of some tech, to try to let my wife or kids know I’m about to devote some time to something relating to the iPhone or computer if I have to.That way, the time I do spend in the digital “world” will be purposeful and no longer than it needs to be.
4. Resolved: to memorize more Scripture. Psalm 119:11 says, “I have stored up your word in my heart, that I might not sin against you.” I need to commit the Word of God to memory, so that my mind and heart are engaged, and transformed by it. When I rely on digital media and memory to contain everything I need to know, I don’t change, though maybe I’ve read a lot, and even written a lot down (on my blog, sending off “brilliant” thoughts to the world via Twitter, etc).