Technology, undeniably, has made marvelous improvements to our lives. Much of this technology I would not want to give up under any circumstance n technologies like my computer, automobile, microwave and other such conveniences. Life is good because of this progress.
But one technical breakthrough has yet to improve the quality of my life. It is not as if I have not tried but, so far, this newfangled contraption has not rung true to its boast. It may have my number but I sure don't have its number.
I'm referring, of course, to the infamous cell phone.
It is called a "cell phone," because those who own one are held prisoner to it. It is impossible to go anywhere without seeing somebody, no make that everybody with a cell phone on his or her person.
Take last Tuesday for instance. The Gracious Mistress of the Parsonage invited Yours Truly to go to the grocery store for some items she needed. I'm always glad to be of assistance whenever I can, especially when she concludes the request with, "or else."
I dutifully went to the market for her. Once inside I turned to go down an aisle and coming at me was a person talking. I wasn't really paying attention because my mind was on the list my good wife entrusted to me. Suddenly, I was aware of a conversation, which I thought was directed to me.
"Where are you right now?" the person queried.
A bit confused I responded. "I'm right here in front of you, walking toward you."
Obviously, the person did not hear me and said rather loudly, "Can you hear me, now?"
By this time, I was almost upon the person and thought the person was slightly deaf. So, I started wildly waving my arms and shouted as loud as I could, "Yes, I can hear you, I'm right in front of you. Can you see me?"
The person looked at me like I have never been looked at before and said, rather sarcastically if I say so myself, "What's your problem?"
Coincidentally, that question had been rumbling around in my brain for a few moments. It was then I noticed some gizmo sticking out her ear. I discovered it was called a "Bluetooth."
This Bluetooth is one of the latest technologies for cell phones. Imagine, sticking a tooth in your ear. All my life I have tried to keep things out of my ear with relative success. I even hate it when there is wax build-up in my ear. I don't even like using a headset to listen to music. Call me old-fashioned, but walking around with something stuck in your ear does not seem normal to me.
The cell phones, however, are here to stay, so I might as well just get used to it. I don't like it, but what's a fellow to do?
I would not mind cell phones if people would know how to use them or at least turn them off at particular times n like in church!
Recently, in a church service I was preaching, a cell phone rang just as I was beginning my sermon. Something always happens when a cell phone rings. The person answering forgets where they are and always uses their "outdoor voice."
The person answering the phone said, "I can't talk now I'm in church. No, I said I'm in church. This will have to wait until later. I'll call you back in 15 minutes. No, wait, the minister is preaching, make that an hour."
If confession is good for the soul, I must confess at that moment, a two-hour sermon was raging within my soul.
Of course my wife insists I carry my cell phone with me at all times. Once on returning from an all-day trip she chided me about not having my cell phone with me. I did have it with me; however, I did not turn it on.
"The next time, turn your cell phone on," she instructed. "How can I call you if you're not on?" Then she explained to me about the vibrator mode of the cell phone. Instead of ringing, it vibrates.
Shortly after that I was leaving for another all-day trip and she warned me, "Make sure your cell phone is on. Put it on the vibrator mode if you don't want it to ring."
Along about midmorning, having completely forgotten about my cell phone in my shirt pocket, the vibrator went off and I thought I was having a heart attack.
When I came to my senses, I realized it was my cell phone vibrating.
With still shaking hands I answered the phone. At the other end of the line was my Better Half with an extremely important message for me. "Did you remember to turn your cell phone on?"
I'm grateful that communicating with God is not as complicated. Fortunately for us His phone is always on.
I like what the Prophet said, "Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and show thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not." (Jeremiah 33:3 KJV.)
In fact, God knows what we want even before we call. "And it shall come to pass, that before they call, I will answer; and while they are yet speaking, I will hear." (Isaiah 65:24 KJV.)
That vibration in your heart just may be God calling you.
James L. Snyder is an award winning author and popular columnist living with his wife, Martha, in Ocala, Florida and can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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