We celebrated my son’s first birthday this weekend. It was glorious, exhausting, and full of so much joy. And I didn’t take a single picture of it.
I also spent my weekend with my phone away from me, not attached to the palm of my hand, ignored and forgotten. Nothing deserves some neglect more than social media sometimes. And that also meant neglecting Soul Strings, for only just a moment.
Truthfully, my husband did take some photos for me. And truthfully, I picked up my phone more than a handful of times only to remember that Facebook, Instagram, and my email were not there to look at it. I was required to be present wherever I was, like at a wedding reception, an opportune time to take photo after photo of the couple, a selfie or two, and how cute my boys looked. I was prompted to not share with everyone I know where I was and who I was with. And let’s be real, these days, that’s not easy.
I also went on a date with my husband. We don’t go on dates regularly, and getting time to have adult, uninterrupted conversation is such a sweet treat. We spent a great chunk of time talking about Jesus and bringing those we love to His feet. We got to ignore the demands of our life, the pull of sharing with the world our “date night”, and act as though it was just us, talking Jesus.
I don’t really care all that much what other people do with their free time, nor does it affect me if social media or the internet or your phone is everything that matters (unless you’re my husband, then it does matter quite a bit). But guys, I dare you to give it a rest. I dare you to delete the apps on your phone and go somewhere in public that requires you to be silent and alone. Or to go on a date without the both of you checking your phones at regular intervals, ignoring the space between conversations to see what everyone else in the world is doing. I dare you to stop blogging for a while so you can feel human again, so you can read a book for your own enjoyment, or so you can see outside of the screen. Our time is that of being connected. It is a tremendous opportunity to show people what living like Jesus looks like by writing about it in a blog, posting photos of how God works in our life, or sharing 140 characters of how Christ changed us. But it is greater still to look into the eyes of the people we know rather than the screens that rest in our palms.
But, praise the Lord for it still! The internet is one of the greatest ways to reach people all across the world, to speak life to those we can’t see face-to-face. But let it go for a moment. Let it be. The world continues on whether you share everything or nothing at all. Do something, be part of something, that’s too much for the internet.