Tuesday, February 16, 2010
For the next forty days, if you need me, please don't email. This year during Lent I'm unplugging from the internet.
It sounds a little crazy, doesn't it? I think so, too. But I also think that God has been nudging me this direction for awhile.
See, what I've noticed is that the computer tends to take more than it gives. Even if I think I'm using it well, I look up and too much time has passed and my kids are whining for lack of attention. And what did I actually accomplish in the last 30 minutes? I'm usually not sure. Certainly not enough to justify the 30 minutes! I'm not saying that this is always true for everyone - but it is true for me.
The computer also promises things that it does not deliver. It promises to make communication quicker and easier, when it actually just multiplies pseudo-communication, making me spend more time for less true relationship. Seriously, who can keep up with email, blogs, facebook, and twitter? It isn't possible.
And for me, the computer holds out the seductive idea of rest. When I am tired, or simply tired of mothering, it is so easy to go sit down at the computer. I'll just check my email. And then read just one blog...well, two or three or five. Or glance through a couponing site. I'm so tired, and the computer feels like escape. And escape it may be, but it is not healthy escape. It doesn't give me true rest, not the way sitting down with a good book and a cup of coffee, or lying down for a 20 minute nap does! If I spend the kids' nap time on the computer, I'm upset when they get up because guess what? I'm still tired.
My primary vocation right now is to be a wife and a mom. I think that God (who has been nudging me this direction for some time now) is telling me to work, this Lent, on doing well that which I should be doing anyway. Being a mother, well. Being a wife, well.
So this Lent I am focusing on giving up those things which distract. We're simplifying our diet (oatmeal for breakfast and all meals simple vegetarian), and I'm unplugging from the information superhighway. In the "extra" time that will free up, I'll be doing some spiritual reading/study, staying on top of the chores, and working towards mothering with more grace.
Lord, please bless our simpler life this Lent. Give us strength and courage as we carry out our callings. And may we find our true rest in you.