I have a confession: sometimes I play hide and seek. I know I’m not a kid anymore but I still feel the need to play this game. That’s right, I said “need.”
I don’t know about you but I can get distracted pretty easily. It’s a struggle I think we all share although I’ve noticed it a lot more in the last few years. Technology has become so prevalent in our lives that we’ve allowed buzzes and alerts to pop into our lives more than ever. Also, for some of us, these devices have become our “go-to” cure for boredom.
This little thing intrudes into my life more often than I’d like and it all started so innocently. Texting used to be hard to do, so I didn’t do it that much. I only had to make a few phone calls a day, so it wasn’t too much of a problem. But then… the smartphone explosion happened. All of a sudden, notifications were everywhere!
In just the time that I’ve been writing this, I’ve received a few Facebook messages, over a dozen emails, many random app notifications, and countless WhatsApp/text messages. Every single notification seems to demand and command my attention. Each one distracting me more.
Oh…wait a second…someone just walked into my office. Be right back…
OK, I’m back.
Where was I? Oh yeah… Hide and seek. Sometimes I feel the absolute need to play this little game:
I hide from the distractions and I seek God.
I turn off the phone, step away from the computer, go to another room, or even go outside. Anything it takes to hide from the “noise” of technology.
We see in Luke chapter 5 where Jesus gives us a great example. Even in the excitement of His early ministry, where He is healing people and news about Him is spreading, we read this great verse:
But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed. (Luke 5:16)
This shows us that Jesus would regularly remove Himself from a setting. Almost as if people were expecting or demanding Him to do something or be somewhere, and He would take a step back from the situation. Then, He would find a lonely place – but He was not lonely. He would be with His Father and He would pray. A time to focus His heart and mind on God, and restore and renew His spirit.
We need this. Not only to get away from the distractions but to centre ourselves with God. To have that time to be focused on our relationship with Him and renew our spirit. The notifications are coming in left and right. Let’s all take some time today to withdraw to a lonely place and be with God.
By the way, I’ve turned off many notifications, deleted apps, and set “do not disturb” intervals on my phone. I’m still a work in progress.