Tuesday, May 8, 2018

The First Priority


Exodus 20:1-3
And God spoke these words:  "I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery.  You shall have no other gods before me."

When my husband, Danny, and I reserve a mountain cabin for a much needed holiday, we make the conscious decision to limit our use of technology while there.  We don't bring the laptop, nor do we surf our cell phones with regularity.  Instead, we talk or read, play backgammon or pool, but most importantly, we spend hours observing and basking in God's glorious creation.



We have come, though, to expect the availability of cell service in the mountains, as over the last ten years or so, towers have sprung up all over.  But somehow, in all this "progress," our cabin, "A Walk in the Clouds," is a far cry behind the times.

Shortly after we arrive and settle in, I check my phone for any emails.  "No Service" glares spitefully at me from the upper left corner of my screen.  No service???  An unexpected and unwelcome tinge of panic starts to rise.  I pace the cabin rooms, the decks, the yard, the gravel drive, hoping and praying for just one bar to appear.  At long last, it does!  But my sigh of relief is short-lived.  When I try to call my mother to let her know we've made it safely to our destination, the phone refuses to comply.

Stubbornly, I continue to dial, but to no avail.  Maybe the Wi-Fi connection will help.  I'll have Danny hook my phone up to it.  "No internet," Danny announces when I reenter the cabin.  "I tried to log onto it just now, but either it's not working or the signal's too weak."

"That's just great," I grouse, teetering on the verge of whininess.  "It was supposed to be a choice not to use the internet; this is a mandate!"

And then, it dawns on me.  I'm ticked off because something I think I control now controls me.  I realize, to my chagrin, that technology has become more of an idol than ever I thought it would be or could be in my life.

No, it isn't wrong to want to stay connected to loved ones, but God convicts me that my first priority should always be to maintain my connection with Him, the One who first loved me and always will.

Contritely, I lay my idol down.  I pray for God's forgiveness.  I curl up on the comfy sofa, open my Bible, and immerse myself in His ever-comforting Word.

The only wireless link that never fails.

Amen!

28 comments:

  1. It is sadly true that we have become to be reliant on modern technology; be it the cell phone, internet, or whatever. I am just as guilty.

    Thank you for a good post today, Martha.

    God bless.

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    1. Yes, Victor, sad but true for so many of us. So grateful that God got my attention in all this.
      Love and blessings!

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  2. It's always convicting and humbling when we realize our idols. Thanks for this insight!

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    1. Yes, Emily, it is humbling, indeed. Glad you enjoyed the post!
      Love and blessings!

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  3. No internet? Sounds like heaven. :) There are times I wish there was none so I can turn my phone off and leave it off until it is time to leave. But you definitely made the better connection. Glad you are back.

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    1. Yes, Bill, most definitely the better connection, that's for sure and certain. :)
      Love and blessings!

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  4. Martha, I hate to admit it, but this one hits home. I sort of have a love/hate relationship with technology. I'm especially convicted by this, "And then, it dawns on me. I'm ticked off because something I think I control now controls me. I realize, to my chagrin, that technology has become more of an idol than ever I thought it would be or could be in my life."

    Thank you, dear friend for your honesty. It made me take pause, too. Yes, we should be more concerned about our "connection" with Jesus than the internet!
    Love, Beckie

    I'm glad you and Danny had a getaway.

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    1. Yes, Beckie, we should all be focused on the one and only connection that truly matters - Jesus. So glad this post spoke to your heart, my friend, and thanks again so much for sharing on Facebook!
      Love and blessings!

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  5. Loved this post and all it means!

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    1. So glad you enjoyed it, Terri!
      Love and blessings!

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  6. I usually do not look at my phone much while on trips. Unplugged is delightful!
    Blessings!

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    1. Yes, Lulu, being unplugged can be delightful and we need to remind ourselves to do it more often, even when we're not on vacation.
      Love and blessings!

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  7. Awesome post, sister!!!

    I too am guilty of being allowed to be controlled by something other than our Father.

    It's so easy to take the gifts of provision and worship them more than we do the Provider...

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    1. Amen, Floyd! So, so easy to worship the provisions more than the Provider. Let's pray not to fall into that trap!
      Love and blessings!

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  8. What peaceful views you had, Martha. I think I would spend most of the time basking in the sun, too. :) It's strange how when something is totally taken away, we realize how very much we depend on it. It must have been hard not to worry about your mom waiting for your call or to be available if something happened at home. But it's oh so true how quickly we can make an idol out of something. I love how God drew you to His only wireless link that never fails. Love and hugs to you!

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    1. Yes, Trudy, the views were both majestic and calming. We did spend lots of sitting on the deck, content to simply be in God's creation. I did manage to get a text message to my brother (don't know why that worked when the phone wouldn't), so thankfully, Mom didn't worry. I'm so grateful, though, that God gave me this revelation about those sneaky idols in my life.
      Love and blessings!

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  9. I love this one, my sweet friend. It is so true that we get lost in the world of air waves. It does rather control if we allow it. Good for you for realizing that not being connected endlessly is simply an opportunity to connect to the Father. Good article. Thanks for reminding us that our lives will not fail because the internet does.

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    1. Yes, Nells, our lives will not fail because the internet does, in fact, we can gain many unimaginable riches when we choose to tune out and tune into God's Word and His incomparable creation. I'm so glad He taught me this lesson on our trip!
      Love and blessings!

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  10. Wow! This is great...I am sorry for your inconvenience...but glad that you realized why you were there in the first place! I do hope you were able to check on your mother at some point...but I am sure she was being well taken care of... I find myself longing for the pre-cell phone, computer days sometimes...but then I'd be missing out on this delightful friendship we share here... However, it is a good plan to be unplugged every so often, especially when you have all that beauty of the mountains surrounding you just beckoning you to relax and explore and enjoy! Glad you chose the better part...

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    1. Pamela, we did choose, or God had us choose, the better part of it all. Yes, we did venture out to Bryson City in NC, and were afforded a strong signal to connect with family. Mom was good with all of that. But what a wake up call! What we take for granted, which is really God's blessings, we can too easily overlook. I, like you, am so very grateful for the long-distance friendships the internet allows for us, and I do think God's hand is in this, too, especially when it comes to meeting fellow Christian bloggers who inspire and encourage us in our faith walk.
      Love and blessings!

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  11. Martha, it can truly be painful when God convicts us of our reliance on someone or something other than Him. For many it seems technology is what is relied upon rather than on God. Thank you for sharing this post; I can tell you wrote it from the depths of your heart.

    By the way, photos of where you stayed are simply stunning!

    Love and blessings!

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    1. Kim, you are absolutely spot-on here. I reflect back upon my sense of urgency in the moment, and realize I've neglected to trust in God. Wow! This is so humbling for me, and needed to be so. As I said to Pamela above, we take too many of God's blessings for granted. May we not do so going forward in the life He has set before us.
      Love and blessings!

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  12. for sure, our first hours / days without being tethered to some kind of connection is unsettling at best, isn't it, Martha.

    we realize how completely hooked we've become. and then begin to breathe deep in relief because we're finally free.

    good stuff!

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    1. So true, Linda! We definitely need to make unplugging from the tech stuff something we do more often. I love that you used the word "tethered" here. May our first desire be to be tethered to the Lord.
      Love and blessings!

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  13. "The only wireless link that never fails." That is brilliant. I'm going to put that on a sticky note on my computer! I'm still adjusting to having no TV in my house. Being without all my tech connections at the cabin is fine and welcomed, but at home, I want everything to work! Loved this post so much. Spoke right to me.

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    1. Oh, Galen, I'm thrilled that this post spoke to your heart. Yes, it's one thing to KNOW that you are entering the non-tech zone, but another to be completely blindsided by it, as we were at this cabin. I certainly learned a powerful lesson here, and so grateful that God continues to teach me how to simply hone in on His great grace, power and love.
      Love and blessings!

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  14. Love this post. I have been just like you and so identify with this. I will be two places this summer with no internet and to be honest, there is part of me wanting this and part of me dreading it. sigh.

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    1. Jean, being without internet can be a real wake up call as to where we truly have our focus in life. I understand both the desire and the dread involved. I wish you the very best while on those summer trips!
      Love and blessings!

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