Core scripture: “No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it” (1 Corinthians 10: 13).
Message: Okay, Google … Start writing my blog.
Alright, nothing is happening. I guess I have to do this myself this morning. My topic for today? Technology. Ever seen those “Okay, Google” commercials? They kinda make me laugh. It makes me wonder just how lazy our society is becoming. As if I can’t take the time to turn on my own light switch or begin playing music on my own, I need Google to do it for me? I say if we create a Google product that acts as a personal butler, we go big. I mean, why not teach Google to do the dishes? Or give my boys a bath?
I can go bigger. Okay, Google … Find a cure for the common cold.
My cold sucked the past three days, but I’m back to 100 percent today! If only Google would listen.
Now, let me get this straight. I have nothing against technology and the amazing things it can do. I think it is a godsend that my students all have iPads to further their learning. Smartphones are incredible resources for all kinds of questions. And, yes, I am sure there is a place for an “Okay, Google” product that I would use on a daily basis. I just think that sometimes we as teachers need to reevaluate the way we use technology. Is it for our own enjoyment or for something deeper? Do we let technology get the best of our free time?
Let’s try this one. Okay, Google … Find a way to put the clamps on the mouth of my son when he fights me over having to wear a coat in 40-degree weather.
Dang, Google, where were you when I needed you yesterday?
I am certainly not immune to temptation. For me it is the free iPad games. There was a time when I would plant my boys in front of the TV and crank out a good half hour on Madden Mobile before I even conversed or played with them. Hulu gets me too. I can cozy up to the couch and hold my hand up to my wife, telling her just 10 more minutes, when all she wants is what she calls is a conversation without a destination. Pretty bad, I know. Temptation will come at you through Candy Crush, Facebook, and texting meaningless messages. It comes through checking e-mail 24/7, face-timing for no reason, and looking up goofy stuff on the internet.
Google, you better listen now. Okay, Google … Find a way to get my students to put periods at the end of their sentences on a consistent basis.
My six-year-old called me out on it. He flopped on my lap over Thanksgiving Break and downright told me, “Daddy, your boys are more important than playing football on your iPad!” Wisdom from a child. I closed my game and pulled him close to me. Tears welled in my eyes. He was right. These moments wouldn’t last forever. Before I know it, my little buddy will be graduating high school and be off to college. Why am I wasting his childhood playing a meaningless iPad game when I could be playing Legos with him? Or coloring with him? Or tossing him baseballs to hit in the front yard? Shoving my iPad aside, we played Spot It Jr. for a half hour. Later that night, I deleted the game from my iPad.
Okay, Google … Help me overcome temptation from my technology.
So, herein lies the problem. When you take away a bad habit, you had better replace it with something good. Something fulfilling. Something that will lead you closer to what God needs from you. What I did was simple. I knew the first thing I did in the morning was get on my iPad to play a few games, so I stopped grabbing the iPad and grabbed a devotion book titled It’s Great Being a Dad instead. Or I will grab my scripture cards and challenge myself to put those words in my heart deeper. Are there days I mess up? Sure. But is my life becoming better off because of small substitutes? Without a doubt.
Okay, Google … So what does God’s Word say about all this?
The Bible is pretty forthright when it comes to talking about temptation. “Watch and pray that you may not enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak” (Matthew 26: 41). The flesh is indeed weak. And the thing is God doesn’t want you to NEVER play an iPad game or get on Facebook or Skype someone. Using those moments sparingly to recharge your batteries can actually be for the good! God just doesn’t want you to make an idol of your technology. With every temptation that Satan sends your way, God provides the way out (1 Corinthians 10: 13). It is your job to use His Word to guide you down the right path.
Okay, Google … So, what are some things these teachers need to watch out for?
Think about the following temptations and how they play out in your life. Do you continually text your friends through faculty meetings below the table? Do you play iPad games behind your desk while students are working? Do you feel a desire to check e-mail 24-7 even while at the dinner table? Do you use technology to babysit your little ones while you update your Fantasy Football roster? Do you feel a need to post your entire life of Facebook? Do you e-mail or text instead of providing a much-needed face-to-face talk with a friend?
Okay, Google … Help me end this blog.
As Christian teachers, it is time we model how to use technology for the good. Get on Youversion and sign up for a daily devotional. Watch a sermon on your iPad in place of watching a no-brainer show. Play Christian music while you scrub dishes at home. Allow your students to create a powerful iMovie to showcase their talents in learning something new. Go paperless with Google Classroom. Write words of encouragement or share scripture on Facebook. Let your smartphone buzz when you’re on daddy or mommy duty. Your family is more important than being attached to your phone. Don’t let technology get the best of you. Use it for God’s glory.
Challenge: Analyze the way you spend your free time with technology. How much of it is used for the good of what God wants from you? How much of it is a time sucker? Replace your time sucking moments with God-filled moments of conversation and devotion that will lead you closer to Him.
Song to bring it home: We need to fix our eyes on what God wants from us, not what we want. Listen to For King and Country’s “Fix My Eyes” to inspire you in that category.
Prayer: Lord, I pray You will assist me in using technology wisely so that I may model self-control to others. May I use it not for my own enjoyment but to bring You glory. Amen.