On Friday I babysat my nephew for a few hours, and while I was babysitting I decided to do some laundry while I played with him. At the time I was wearing a sweatshirt and Sammy got it pretty dirty so I tossed it in with the load in the washer...
Fifteen minutes later I realized I didn't have my phone. It came out of the spin cycle looking quite clean, and effectively a brick. My 8 month old smartphone was now less useful than the dumbphone I'd had for 2 years before this one. Try not to envy me guys. I know it's hard.
All of my contacts were in that phone. With the exception of five phone numbers I couldn't get hold of anyone because I don't actually know most people's numbers. My schedule and important dates, my apps, my mp3s, my pictures...basically every thing that I use on a daily basis, gone. You know something? It was pretty scary. As I drove the 45 minutes back to my apartment I felt exposed - what if the van broke down? How would I call for help? How would I Google a near by tow company?
Never mind I've been driving for quite some time and until 2004 didn't ever have a phone on me. I'm so used to its constant companion, not having a phone seemed really strange. I had plans for that night and no way to confirm them because I couldn't call anyone - and not everyone stalks Facebook or email like I do.
My world didn't end in the three days I was phone-less. Eventually it stopped feeling so strange, though it certainly remained inconvenient as I don't have a home phone. The new phone arrived this morning, I'm plugged back in. Call, text, mention me on Twitter - I'll get the notifications now.
The timing of all this isn't lost on me. I'm about to start reading The Next Story, I lose my mind and forgetfully wash possibly the most important item I own (aside from my laptop, that is)? Apparently I needed a reminder as to how much I use - and in a real sense, am dependent upon technology. I've got a funny feeling this is going to be a good book for me to be reading...hopefully I can complete it without wrecking anything else.
From the book
Tim discusses Tsar Bomba, the most powerful nuclear weapon ever detonated, in the preface to The Next Story. What struck me most about it initially was this:
The flash of light from the explosion was visible over 600 miles away, though it would take 49 minutes for the sound to reach that distance.-(Page 9)
You could see the detonation long before you could hear it. I realize this isn't technology based, but how true is this reality in our own lives? Often times people observe our lives long before they ever get to know us. They see our lives played out before they hear the words we speak. What does my life look like to someone who doesn't know me? To the people around me this weekend - did they see someone consumed with frustration and an inability to function because I didn't have my phone?
I'd love to say no, but realistically that's probably exactly what people saw - despite the fact that I don't want what I have to define my life, and despite the fact that I would never verbalize it like that, it sure seemed to be the case on Friday. This is to my shame, and I'm grateful for God's mercy in revealing my heart. But how do I move forward? How do I use my laptop, my phone, my camera in such a way that I don't become entangled by it? If I drop my new phone in the sink - how ought my heart respond if I'm truly treasuring Christ above stuff?
These questions seem to be precisely what the aim of Tim's book is, and I'm looking forward to diving in.