Does Not Compute

by Rhonda DeYoung

You finally got the new video game/phone/handheld super-toy that everyone's been talking about. It's natural to feel excited, but are you a bit too excited? If you're not careful, electronic devices can take over your life. Take this quiz to see if you could use a timeout from technology.

1. Are all of the electrical outlets in your room currently in use?

 

Yes

No

2. Do you consider television a right and not a privilege?

 

Yes

No

3. Have you ever texted someone who was sitting in the same room?

 

Yes

No

4. Do you know the names of more video game characters than Bible characters?

 

Yes

No

5. Do you have more friends online than in real life?

 

Yes

No

6. Do you know what “LOL,” “TMI” and “IDK” mean?

 

Yes

No

7. Are you only able to tell time by reading a digital clock?

 

Yes

No

8. Do you always have at least one remote control within reach?

 

Yes

No

9. When writing with a pencil and paper, do you expect red lines to appear under misspelled words?

 

Yes

No

10. If the power went out in your room, would you feel antsy?

 

Yes

No

11. Would you rather look at someone's vacation photos online instead of going there with your family?

 

Yes

No

12. Have you ever said, “I’m sorry, iPod. We’ll go home right now and plug you into the charger.” ?

 

Yes

No

13. Do you consider it “cooking” to microwave popcorn?

 

Yes

No

14. Have you ever written a book report without reading the book (using online summaries instead)?

 

Yes

No

15. Do you expect an allowance for feeding your virtual pet or cleaning your virtual house?

 

Yes

No

16. Do you watch more TV and movies by yourself than you do with your family?

 

Yes

No

17. Do you own more chargers and adapters than books and puzzles?

 

Yes

No

18. Do you need a GPS to find candy at the grocery store?

 

Yes

No

19. Do you practice online games so you won’t let your team down?

 

Yes

No

20. Can you only solve math problems with a calculator in hand?

 

Yes

No


Hardwired
If you answered yes to 10 or more questions, technology might be distracting you from the other great things in your life.

Consider taking a one-day break from all of your electronic devices:
Instead of listening to music, make your own by playing an instrument or singing with your family.
Instead of calling or texting, go to the park with a friend.
Instead of using the microwave, munch on some fresh fruit.
Instead of watching TV, read a book or act out your own story.
Instead of "walking" around a fantasy world, go jogging outside.
Instead of playing video games, do a puzzle or play a board game.
Instead of "liking" photos, paint a picture.

If one day away from technology is too hard, that's a problem. Talk to your parents about why you need your phone or other devices.

A Lesson From Old
We live in a technological age unlike any other time in history. The apostle Paul never had to answer his cell phone, check his email or recharge his laptop. But people in the Bible had their own type of distractions that hindered their time alone with God.

For example, the mighty Samson was captured after being distracted by a woman. When he prayed to God, Samson’s strength returned, and he destroyed many Philistines and their temple (see Judges 16).

Jonah was distracted by his pride when God asked him to go to Nineveh, but once he was released from the belly of a large fish, he followed God’s instructions and convinced the Ninevites to repent (see Jonah 3).

Even without technology, these men had plenty of distractions that sidetracked them from God’s best. Only when they set aside their distractions were they able to pursue God’s plan. Learn from their example and get your life focused on God.

Copyright © 2011 by Rhonda DeYoung. Used by permission. Clubhousemagazine.com. Illustration © India Redman.