We have all joked at one time or another about being addicted to coffee, chocolate, or our favorite television show. And now there is a whole new generation of electronic addictions such as smart phones, iPads, and the internet itself.
Social networking is a powerful group of tools that can help us make new friends and connect with many people quickly. Smart phones keep us in touch with loved ones and tell us where to turn. And iPads allow us to carry an entire library in the size of an old Composition Notebook. Modern electronics do just about anything except wash the dishes.
Many people spend a lot of time online. And when you have hundreds of Facebook friends and tens of thousands of twitter connections, there is always something going on, which makes it all too easy to waste entire days skipping from one platform to another.
But it’s no big deal, right? These things are harmless, aren’t they? It’s not like being addicted to harmful things like alcohol or drugs.
…Or is it?
Anything we think about more than God is an idol. Anything we turn to for comfort or pleasure instead of God is an idol.
And what did God say about idols?
Thou shalt have no other gods before me.
So, when we are stressed and turn to chocolate or the Twitter before, or instead of, praying to God, we commit sin and are convicted by the law as transgressors.
James pointed out, Whoever keeps the whole law and yet fails in one point is guilty of breaking it all.
Take up our cross. Die to self and fleshly desires.
Or at least work towards that.
Here are some practical tips:
- Every morning spend time with God first.
- Before checking in online, check in with God first.
- Before venting our stress to others or drinking Hershey syrup, go in your room, close the door, and cast all your anxiety on the One who cares for you.
- Do an internet fast. Or a coffee, shopping, or junk food fast. Even if it is only for a day or a few hours, try to set a block of time aside to focus on God and teach the flesh that there is a new sheriff in town. Maybe once a week at the same time each week, spend time on the important relationships.
- Find an accountability partner to help keep you on track.
Talk to God about whatever your idol is. Be honest with Him about your weaknesses. Decide and commit to obey as He leads.
God will bless your efforts and draw you closer to Himself. He loves you so very much.