“The average American teenager who uses a smart phone receives her first phone at age 10 and spends over 4.5 hours a day on it (excluding texting and talking). 78% of teens check their phones at least hourly and 50% report feeling ‘addicted’ to their phones. It would defy common sense to argue that this level of usage, by children whose brains are still developing, is not having at least some impact, or that the maker of such a powerful product has no role to play in helping parents to ensure it is being used optimally. It is also no secret that social media sites and applications for which the iPhone and iPad are a primary gateway are usually designed to be as addictive and time-consuming as possible, as many of their original creators have publicly acknowledged.”
Month: January 2018
Father, we’re in need of your light to shine in our darkness. Just as the people were turned away and seemingly without hope before the time of Your Son’s arrival and His revelation as Your beloved Son, so also Lord our world is in darkness and without hope apart from the gospel of Your Kingdom. We thank You that You made Him known to us in power in Your Word and by Your Spirit, such as when Simeon proclaimed that he had seen the salvation of God in the temple while holding Jesus in his arms, and at His baptism when You Father proclaimed that this is Your well beloved Son in whom You are well pleased. And not only this but He demonstrated His power in miracles, at the cross and ultimately in the resurrection, to show beyond a shadow of a doubt that He is the Christ and that He is good and merciful and just and that He is the One who rescues us from our sins, making us citizens of His Kingdom. Lord grant us to love Him with all of our affections, our hearts and minds, our wills, with our actions and the way we live, as those who have been delivered from sin, and that in this way we would honor Him as the One who reigns and the One who delivered us from evil.
“While some of our habits are acquired by choosing to engage in certain practices (e.g., signing up for drivers’ ed. or registering for piano lessons), many are acquired without our knowing it. And this might happen especially when we are unaware of it. If we are inattentive to the formative role of practices, or if we treat some practices as thin when they are thick, then we will be inattentive to all the ways that such practices unwittingly and unintentionally become automated. We will fail to recognize that they are forming in us habits and desires, oriented to particular ends that function to draw us toward those ends at an affective, unconscious level such that we become certain kinds of people without even being aware of it.