A week without media caused me to forgot how to write a blogpost, so this will just be a choppy random blur of thoughts.
FIRST: Here is how I cheated while living with pseudo 1992 technology for 7 days. (BTW, while in the mountains, we live in an RV camper on a river. It is cheater camping for people with small children. Also, the internet is spotty at best, so this was part of my cheat.)
- I did not use a computer, blog, or Facebook.
- I only scrolled through my e-mail on the phone to see if there were any emergencies, but I did not open them. EXCEPT, I DID read every single e-mail or blogpost from my friend who is 25 weeks pregnant with quintuplets because that is crucial and time-sensitive.
- I only texted our friends who were joining us on vacation.
- I did not watch DVD movies, except for overhearing the ones that my kids watched.
- I DID take some digital pictures because I don’t have a film camera anymore. I also took pictures on my phone, but I did not insta-flare them. 🙂
- I did not look on the internet or listen to Pandora. EXCEPT, I DID look up how to save my husband’s iPhone after he jumped into the campground pool to save our drowning daughter. (Not only has she survived, but rice and silica gel saved his iPhone.)
THE REALITY: Here is how it felt.
During days one and two, I felt weird, twitchy, and lost. I couldn’t quite recall how to do things, like make spaghetti sauce or drive to waterfalls.
Don’t you have to confirm those sorts of decisions with Google?
During days three and four, I felt my brain start to wake up to some old memories. It was like my eyes un-dilated, focused, and stopped quavering for screens.
I saw some otters in the river.
I read a novel about time travel. Did you know that I’m OBSESSED with time travel? Did you know that I love to READ?
I crocheted a pink baby blanket for my friend who just had her first baby.
I wrote some of the Bible study that I’ve been saying I would write for three years. I also worked on my novel. I wrote it in a composition notebook with my fingers holding a pen, twirling the ink into a perfectly ribbony thin scrawling line.
The media fast caused me to see my restlessness AND my need for true REST.
- I am me when I’m ALL alone, sitting by a river in the middle of the mountains. I am me, created by God, fully loved, without makeup, technology, real food, fans, followers, readers, comments, or likes. I am not and should not allow myself to be deceived into thinking that my identity or worth are comprised of the glowing blue thumbs shining at me from a screen.
- While I SAY that I write to glorify God, it is tricky to maintain that when I am so strongly motivated by praise, criticism, and comments. It made me wonder, do I follow HIM or do I follow YOU?
- I have three followers. Two of them can’t read or write. I want them to see more of my eyes than the back of my head. If I tell them that there is more to life than “screens,” I should do a better job of modeling that.
- This media fast made me slow down, and frankly more than any of the other fasts, it made me realize how FULL my life is of . . . . . um . . . . . unrest, striving, and discontent. That was pretty worrisome, seeing as how I blog about contentment.
Ironically, the Bible study I’m writing is about rest, restlessness, and our faith. BUT we pack our lives SO FULL that we cannot breathe. I’m starting to realize that what Psalm 23 says might have more nuance than I’ve previously realized. (emphasis is mine.)
2 He makes me to lie down in green pastures;
He leads me beside the still waters.
HE HAS TO MAKE ME LIE DOWN!! Am I restless, burned out, overbusy and tired because I won’t lie down, be led, or be still when I’m staring at a screen, clicking like an addict, and frantically self-agrrandizing my way to insanity?
While I give lip-service to the idea of margin and rest in my life, I am very reluctant to allow empty time or space in my life.
Yet in spite of my hesitation to be slow, these Summer of 7 fasts have confirmed for me how faithful the Lord is to speak–even in the pinprick sized spaces I’ve made for him during these Fasts. He’s taken these fasts and created a slowness, a peace, a quiet, and a rest. A space to listen. A space to breathe.
Now, I won’t lie. Some of what he’s saying is pretty uncomfy, but He’s managing to take my willingness and reward it. Here are two great passages that you should take a second to read.
Okay, here’s a little question for you. Your answers will really help me as I do research for my Bible study.
What areas of your life bring you REST or RESTLESSNESS?
I’m linking this post up to the Summer of 7 Media Bloghop.