Yesterday, I saw our pastor at Starbuck's. We talked for a moment about facebook. I have come to the conclusion that there are more cons than pros about facebook. I actually discourage people from joining if they haven't already. My belief is that it's not wise to shift your conversation to facebook if it isn't already there. Facebook lives in the land of quasi-real relationships. The relationships aren't quite real, but aren't entirely fake either. It's a bit of a trap in my mind. The reason I don't withdraw from it altogether is that I now have relationships with family and friends far away that I don't hear about otherwise. It also allows me to keep in touch with people that I don't see regularly where I am.
My pastor made a comment about communication and the internet and how it was supposed to improve communication, but it often leads to more frustration--that you can't get ahold of everyone right away or that you have to call someone because they don't have email. I think that part of the reason why is that the internet has increased our amount of communication with one another rather than decreased it. We communicate more and squeeze even more into our days.
Food For Thought...
How many people do you "talk" to in a day on the internet?
How many people do you "talk" to via text or cell phone call?
How many do you talk to via a landline or a phone while you are at home?
I was driving my children to their piano and voice lessons on Tuesday when I was stopped at a traffic signal. I looked over and saw a woman talking in her bluetooth through the entire stop. I listened to the sound in my car. It was quiet. None of us were talking. No cell phone talking. A little music from the radio. It was a good thing that gave us all a bit of peace amidst all that we had to do during the day.
Another day last week I noticed two people walking away from the store. One of them was talking. But, he wasn't talking to the person with him. He was talking on his bluetooth to someone else.
I also remember some time in the last month walking through a store and noticing a woman alone talking on a bluetooth. Of course I didn't see the bluetooth at first and I chuckled realizing how that woman would have appeared five years ago. She would have looked like she was talking to herself and people around her would have been concerned because of how animated her conversation was.
What a time we live in. When I read Distracted by Maggie Jackson last year, it made a huge impact on my thinking. The ideas from that book now haunt me. Do we have rest in our lives? Do we have peace? Are we tied to our cell phones or computers in a way that prevents us from settling our minds, hearts, and bodies down to rest?
This isn't the downside of Cell Phones and YouTube that I meant to talk about in this post. I actually had a frenetically busy day yesterday. The part that calmed me down was talking to a friend face to face at church in the evening. That conversation was such a blessing to me in a way that I can't quite explain. There was no rush to our conversation. I truly enjoy this woman's friendship and hearing her honest opinions.
Earlier in the day, I tried to squeeze in a car wash. My car was beyond filthy. After rushing around my car to quickly wash it, I pulled out and ran over a cub! Ay Ay AY! I simply didn't see it. Thankfully, no one had a cell phone to film my silly mistake. Unfortunately, an 18 year old girl near where I lived was not so lucky. She made a U-turn over a retaining wall and took a nose dive in the car. I heard the story at the Starbucks later that day. I went to church afterwards and mentioned the story to two gals. One had already heard about it--and seen it on a YouTube clip.
We all make mistakes but one of the downsides of Cell Phones and YouTube is that it makes even more of our mistakes.
Most things have upsides and downsides. The internet, cell phones, and YouTube are not exceptions to this. I can't help but be thankful 1) my driving over the curb wasn't filmed 2) the accident I was in when I was 16 wasn't filmed on a cell phone and 3) I have many friends who aren't on the internet or facebook much.