“In an increasingly technological world, it is essential that we cultivate habits of engagement with the world that engage our full humanity.”
Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – January 12, 2023
Let the heavens be glad, and let the earth rejoice; let the sea roar, and all that fills it; let the field exult, and everything in it! Then shall all the trees of the forest sing for joy. Psalm 96:11-12, ESV
After weeks of rain and bitter cold, my wife and I this week finally got back outside to tend to our land, seeking in small and simple ways to bring order out of chaos. We mended fences, moved piles of mulch, and trimmed dormant plants and bushes in preparation for the arrival of spring. In that moment, I was reminded afresh of the gift of living on a bit of land in the country, and the way it forces me out of myself and the artificial environments in which I so often live.
Phones and computers have undoubtedly changed our world forever, and in countless ways have brought a level of efficiency, interconnectedness, and convenience unimaginable even a decade ago. Yet with every technological “advancement,” we also must contend with the unexpected consequences of an unbridled embrace of these technologies. While granting endless forms of entertainment and access to information, the “world” presented to us is one-dimensional. Every sensation and human experience is reduced to a fingertip interacting with a piece of glass. Our eyes may view a mountaintop or waterfall, but our lungs do not feel the chill in the air and our ears do not hear the natural sound of water crashing over the rocks.
In an increasingly technological world, it is essential that we cultivate habits of engagement with the world that engage our full humanity.
Simple as it may be, in our digital age it is remarkably therapeutic for me to spend an afternoon shoveling mulch or planting bushes. This not only engages a part of my humanity left untouched by devices, but it also serves to “right-size” my place in the world and the story in which I live. On a device, you and I are always at center stage, entertaining or distracting ourselves in whatever way we see fit. Yet this is not the whole of the human experience, and when left unchecked, it can become a spiritual sickness that leaves us perpetually unwell.
Christ took on the whole of humanity so that you and I could learn what it means to be truly human. Live alert to the ways technology has closed you off from this full experience, and intentionally and actively pursue ways to more fully engage with the world around you, and in so doing, encounter God in new and undiscovered ways.
Father, teach me what it means to be truly human, through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Find time this week to explore nature and get outside, asking the Lord to meet you and renew you in the process.
Psalm 19:1; Psalm 95:4-5; Psalm 104:24-25
Young Oceans feat. Amanda Cook: Light of Your Love
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