Walking through the mall the other day, I saw a sea of isolation. Though the people were in plenty, children and adults alike, were completely isolated from one other. Everywhere I looked, young and old, had their eyes glued to the glow coming from the rectangular box they held. Perusing through their social media feeds, texting a friend, mindless internet surfing. Children walked in silence, quality time spent with spouses was now divided by the hundreds of other people and companies vying for their attention.
Don’t get me wrong, if I was on the stand beside a judge, the verdict would come back… I would not even question the results: GUILTY would be stamped on the envelope read by the juror.
I noticed myself doing this very thing just last night! I sat in a chair with my cell phone in my hand, as a woman looked at me, smiled and continued to walk by as I glanced down at my cell phone. Who could she have been? My new best friend? A new business associate? Someone who desperately needed a friend to talk to? A woman who needed encouragement in her single-hood and would’ve loved to know about the awesome new book and study guide that was just released, Fairytales Do Come True: When God Writes Your Love Story. I, indeed, am guilty.
I think about the various precious times, while I may be nursing my LAST baby, and instead of soaking in the moments, I may be looking down at my cell phone. Instead of catching her eye or smile, I’m checking to see who “liked” my last Instagram post.
I’ve often thought, I don’t want to to be “THAT” mom, who always has an extra appendage attached to my body from my right hand, my cell phone. So, that brings me to my challenge. I don’t know how long I will do this for, but I will commit to do it today. Will you join me? Today, my phone will go in my purse. While I do laundry or feed kids, while I fold clothes or help Trinity color a picture, while I nurse my last baby or make my bed, instead of in my pocket, in my hand or captivating my eyes and attention, it will be darkly snug in the outside pocket of my purse. For those moments that I simply MUST capture a picture of, I may snag it, save the memory, and tuck it back in its purse pocket.
Will you join me? When you’re with your kids, will you be 100% with them showing them their value and importance? When you are out in public, will you be 100% there, ready to encourage whoever you are suppose to meet? When you are driving in the vehicle with your spouse, will you be 100% there, ready to listen to their day and share about yours. When you visit with your mom and dad today, can you visit and be 100% there telling them of the value they hold in your life?
Today, instead of isolating ourselves, will you join me to be fully PRESENT? Can we show value to those around us by actually making eye contact, smiling, by truly listening to the excitement of our 6 year old boy as he shows us the cool thing he just made, laughing as you hear the laughter of your little girl. Will you join me and trade in ISOLATION, and instead create lasting CONNECTIONS? Connections with your children, friends, friends you’re suppose to meet, the person who needs YOUR smile or hello today?
Share your experience? Would you be innocent if you were on trial? Or, like me, guilty?