Saturday, April 15, 2017

iPhone iAm

I had a cell phone in the early stages of this technological breakthrough.
<-------  It looked something like that.

It was huge in size and it did not have all the functionality as it has today.

I used the cell phone, back then, for emergencies while on business travel. Most of my friends and family did not have cell phones so it was inactive most of the time which led me to get rid of it.

Today, I have an iPhone and use it throughout the day for various purposes from texting, talking, meeting planning, email to GPS and research.

I did not have my IPhone at work one day and at first I worried that I would be out of touch! It lead me to think about how connected I am to this iPhone and it is to me. I felt a bit lost without it. Almost to the point of doubt in being a fully functioning person!

I found, throughout the day, that I was less distracted and more focused without it. I rested in  knowing that if there was an emergency my family could call me on my office phone. And having internet on my work computer, I could check my personal email.

Phew, all is well!

Or is it?

Where is my faith and security?

It sounds like it is in the iPhone and the Internet.

I read that Steve Jobs' iPhone vision was to create a personal device that would be an extension of its owner.  So much so that when the owner looks at the iPhone they see an image of themselves.
I think he is 100% successful with accomplishing that vision. Me and my iPhone. What else do I need. I feel like a complete functioning adult with it. Lost without it.

Recently, a 60 Minutes news reporter interviewed a Google product manager who said the mobile devices are programing our brain to create habits to check our phones. Here is an excerpt and link for the full interview:

From 60 Minutes:
"Harris compares smartphones to “slot machines” because, he says, “Every time I check my phone, I’m playing the slot machine to see, ‘What did I get?’” He is referring to “likes” on Facebook and Instagram, cute emoji in text messages and more followers on Twitter – powerful reinforcement for staying on your phone. It’s a flood of gratifying information that keeps coming via the so-easy-to-use scrolling method on digital devices – another way to keep us engaged".

1 Corinthians 7:17,20,24; 10:31
Each of you should go on living according to the Lord's gift to you, and as you were when God called you. My friends, each of you should remain in fellowship with God in the same condition that you were when you were called. Whatever you do, do it for God's glory.

God is calling, ready, willing and able to connect with us and help us in our lives 24/7, just like that iPhone is ready (as long as it is charged) willing and able to connect and serve us.

The iPhone is in my hand. I see it and can easily access all it has to offer.
Not so with God.

Or is it?

I learned about God's connection over 20 years ago when I was interested in learning about God and the New Testament's Christian principles through a bible study being offered at my church. At the time I knew about, from my Catholic elementary school education, four books in the bible - Matthew, Mark, Luke and John.

We discussed some of the 'sins' or disconnection with God in the bible study. One such 'sin' that intrigued me was gossip. I wanted to know if I was a gossiper or not and decided to pay close attention to what I do and say to find out.

One day at work I was sharing my experience of a colleague with another colleague because she was going to work on a project with this person.

Later that day, I felt bothered by what I had said and I ask my colleague if she thought it was gossip. She didn't think so because I was sharing my experience of the person.

That night I had a dream. I saw a book with its pages flipping and the words/numbers - Kings Kings James 369. I woke up in the morning remembering this dream and wondering what it could mean.
I went about my day and at times this dream came back to me. I spent a few minutes wondering what it could mean and then forgot about it. This continued until I realized that the book may be the bible. I thought, 'could there be a book in the bible called James'? I looked in the table of contents of my bible and sure enough there was a book of James! FEAR rose up in me as I thought, 'is this God talking to me'?

I looked into the book of James, found chapter 3 and then looked at verses 6,9.

James 3:6,9
6The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole body, sets the whole course of one's life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell.  9With the tongue we praise our LORD and Father, and with it we curse human beings, who have been made in God's likeness.

What? How can this be? Really? God was there in the conversation I had with my colleague? Listening and then instructing me in a dream? As I pondered this experience I realized, yes, of course this is possible! Why not!  The creator of all and everything has the ability to connect with us in any way that we will receive it!!! 

Why hasn't this type of interaction happened more often and as easily as my interaction with the iPhone?

What was different in me was my willingness to learn, to question, explore and measure my actions against the Bible's principles and wisdom. 

I was OPEN to receiving, powered up, fully charged!

God is online, connected, fully charged, listening in on our lives. God is waiting for us to acknowledge that with a question, curiosity, exploration and measurement. And when we do, we receive more than we can imagine. We receive guidance and love.

May we receive comfort in knowing without a doubt that God is, I AM, present with us without separation, ever.