by Misty Umholtz

On any given day in my life as a mom of two small children, there is an ongoing list of things in my head that would be ideal to get accomplished in those waking hours.  On top of the daily duties of feeding, cleaning, laundering, grocery shopping, child rearing, etc., there is also the extra projects to get done ie: get pictures printed from the past four months, call a friend I haven’t spoken to in a long time, check on Southwest points, make a chore chart for my 3-year-old daughter and the list goes on.  Then there is always the list of trying to lead a balanced life: trying to fit in a work out, a shower, a quiet time with the Lord, and quality time with my husband. Not to mention the ever so important “want” list of shopping, hanging out with girlfriends, seeing a movie, and reading a book.

Sometimes I wonder, why could God not have given us more hours in the day so we can fit it all in? I have a feeling God knew all along that the parameters of the day He designed were going to pose a challenge for us. Just think back to creation. They only had sunrise to sunset to get all their work done!

I have to believe that the Lord is all knowing and all wise.  I trust that He knows what is best for us and He put the time restraints into place for our good. Instead of asking, “How can I get it all done, Lord?” maybe I should be asking, “What do you want me to get done today, Lord?” As someone who loves to check things off my list, I realize there is more to life than to-do lists in the hours that make up my days, that make up my years. There is fulfillment in knowing I am doing exactly what God wants me to be doing.

Maybe God gave us only 24 hours because we are not suppose to fit it all in.

Lord, teach us to number our days aright so we gain a heart of wisdom.”  Psalms 90:12

 

by Kim Wiezycki

Facebook. Twitter. My Space. Skype. Email. Smart Phones.

Believe it or not, I said no to all of that at one time. And I had a lot of good reasons.  You would probably agree with most of them.  I was concerned about the temptation of being pulled away from my family and responsibilities because I was communicating with others instantaneously. I was worried that some online relationships would not be healthy. I felt I might be opening a door to allowing ideas and people into our home – virtually – that shouldn’t have access. 

After a lot of prayer, and reaching the opinion that all things technological require boundaries, my eyes were opened to the benefits of getting connected to others via all this new technology.  It’s here to stay. Let’s use it for good!

Ecclesiastes 4:12 tells us the importance of being with others and how banding with other believers makes us stronger. It is necessary for us to be in fellowship with each other to encourage each other in our faith in all seasons of our lives. Many times we need to be able to reach out and connect but it’s difficult to literally get out because of our daily responsibilities. Modern technology should never be a substitute for meeting with a small group or attending church. God warns us against the dangers of isolation, which can happen if we only communicate via the computer.  Many may misuse the technology which can keep us from being in real, tangible, face-to-face relationships, with others.

However, if used correctly, there are many benefits to being connected through technology. Throughout the day, I get the benefit of seeing a tweet from Pastor Rick Warren or Pastor Chris Bonham. I’ll read a blog post by GFC Beautiful or Beth Moore. Or I may take a moment to watch a video on Facebook about an upcoming sermon at my home church. Social media is a powerful tool. I know people who’ve used it to find a church or research a small group.

All of these online connections motivate me to stay the course daily (Acts 20:24), and they also remind me that I need to be connected to my believing friends, small group, pastors and their wives, and all parts of the church body. EVERY. DAY.

When to UNPLUG.

When I was a young mom of toddlers, my pastor’s wife counseled me on the importance of listening – really listening – to my children. I had a time-consuming volunteer job that I had committed to and I was passionate about. It was a worthwhile ministry and I knew God had called me to have a role in it. It required many hours on the computer several days a week. My children would frequently need me during that time. It was common for me to say over and over, “Just a few more minutes. I’ll be with you in a little bit. Give me 10 more minutes. Later. Later. Later.”  Then, my pastor’s wife showed me that telling them, “Later, later, later,” would eventually result in my kids not coming to me in the future. Why? Because I was teaching them that they were low on my list of priorities. I was teaching them that their need wasn’t as important to me as answering an email or finishing a text and I was shutting them out. She pointed out that my actions toward them at 3 and 4 years old might keep them from coming to me when they are 13 and 14 years old. YIKES! 

As with anything, there needs to be boundaries. Let the Holy Spirit guide you, convict you, teach you. Practice using modern technology with discipline. Learn how to use it for good.  And know when to turn it off.