To live lives wholly devoted to Christ, we have to turn off the noise. The noise is everything that keeps us from focusing on Jesus. The news, entertainment, jobs, relationships, and above everything else, our cell phones—it’s all noise. Over the last twenty years, we’ve gone from a world where only a few kept a smartphone in their pockets to a world where everyone has a smartphone in their pockets.
Every day we all observe people who can’t seem to look away from their phones. Too often, we are those people. If we can’t turn off the noise in our lives, we won’t be able to sense the promptings of the Holy Spirit.
On an average day, do you spend more time with your phone or with God? Be honest. Smartphones are ubiquitous. Studies show using our phones triggers a dopamine release in our brains. That’s the same response that happens when people do cocaine and other drugs. Our phones are more than a passing distraction. They are an addiction. Any addiction, by definition, is something we are putting before God. Our phones are modern-day idols before which almost every person in the Western world is bowing down to, oblivious to the dangers in their hands.
Phones aren’t all bad. There are many times I find myself stuck waiting for an appointment and it’s great to be able to do some Bible reading while I wait. I also have my daily prayer list on my phone, which is perfect for when I’m travelling. Having my calendar at my fingertips is also a great time-saver. I know there are also many more positive things that we use our phones for. Phones, in and of themselves, are not evil. But they can be lethal to our spiritual lives if we aren’t diligent. Few of us have the discipline to control the time we spend staring at those screens.
Nothing fills our lives with noise more than our phones. Email, social media, the internet, games, and countless other apps fill our heads with static. We’ve got to turn off the noise. Believe me when I tell you I am preaching to myself harder than anyone else. We are so addicted and we don’t even realize it. Try keeping your phone in another room for a day, half a day, or even an hour. You’ll quickly discover how strong the addiction is. We crave the noise.
The bottom line is our phone is controlling our attention and keeping our focus off God. Imagine if we spent half as much time in prayer as we do glued to our phones. Imagine replacing our screen time with Scripture time. Instead of indulging in all the noise and distractions in our world, we could grow closer to God and deeper in our relationship with Him. But first, we have to turn off the noise. Put down your phone. Every time you pick it up, let that be a trigger to spend the next thirty seconds in prayer. If you do, you’ll find your addiction slowly wanes.
We must decide what is more important to us, our Savior who loves us and died for us, or the latest piece of information to show up on our screen. We must decide if we recognize Jesus as the Lord of our lives or are content with worshipping the computer in our pockets. Jesus is worth our lives; nothing on our phone is. Turn off the noise and worship the King.