I have long had a love-hate relationship with technology. I love what digital devices empower us to do, but I hate that it's so easy to abuse or be abused by others through those same devices.
Today I had an experience that reaffirmed my appreciation for smartphones. In my church, adults and youth are given responsibility to look after and help other individuals and families in our community. We call this “ministering.” My 16-year-old son and I are ministering companions and we have the opportunity to minister to four different households.
I have caught myself slipping. Picking up the smartphone out of pure habit to cycle through apps and websites. Grabbing the laptop to tinker or look something up on the web or whatever. I keep removing apps, using website blockers, etc. I just reinstall apps, pause website blockers, etc. But the impulse remains. There is a deeply ingrained urge, a need to stare at a screen – any screen. For any reason or no reason at all.
When a young Neil L. Anderson was preparing to serve his mission, he felt inadequate. He prayed: “Heavenly Father, how can I serve a mission when I know so little?” As he prayed, he had the impression: “You don’t know everything, but you know enough!”
Whenever I am struggling in body or in spirit, whenever I'm wrestling with confusion or doubts, I try to direct my thoughts to the plain and precious things I know about my faith, and how I came to know these things.
It has become a tradition in my family to watch the 1994 version of Miracle on 34th Street around Thanksgiving. It’s one of the things we do to kick off the Christmas season. We watched it this evening.