Chained to My Cell Phone

cell phone addiction

Last week, as I placed my cell phone on my desk, I heard Jesus say to me, “I despise that thing.” Immediately, He had my attention. I asked, “Why? I want to understand.” He explained, “That thing is a distraction. It dethrones Me from being your top of mind. You know I’m jealous over your affections.” At that moment, He exposed the truth. I’m chained to my cell phone again. Now what?

Cell Phone Facts

Jesus is kind, so I knew His explanation was only brushing the surface. Being an epic researcher, I engaged in online sleuthing to dive into the full depth of His concerns for me. I found studies revealing people check their phones 50-150 times a day to ensure they aren’t missing anything. To my dismay, I fit within that group.

Additionally, ‘phubbing’ is a term that describes a person’s behavior who ignores everything around them due to fixation on their cell phone. I watched an eye-opening video on ‘phubbing’ that was painful to watch. First, mall security cameras recorded people walking around fixated on their cell phones, paying no attention to their surroundings. As a result, they fell into fountains, ran into closed doors, and bumped into other people causing injury. Then interior car cams recorded distracted drivers texting or talking on their cell phones resulting in car accidents. In addition to physical injury, there are some emotional drawbacks as well.

Scientific studies reveal cell phones separate us emotionally, resulting in users becoming desensitized, diminishing our empathy for others. Cell phone use can also make us selfish, anxious, and sad, contributing to indulging in vices, addictions, and unwanted social behaviors. So, there must be a way to positively steward technology to impact our lives for Jesus and His kingdom.

Unchained from My Cell Phone

With this dilemma in mind, rewind to last year. Then, I decided it was in my best interest to unchain myself from the cell phone, so I canceled the service. It was like a refreshing breath of air. A sigh of relief washed over me.

First, I enjoyed the freedom from having to remember to charge it.

Secondly, I no longer wondered where I left it.

Thirdly, I was free of its multiple distractions.

Finally, the most favorable result, the brain space focused on my cell phone, was now free to be centered on Jesus!

Then earlier this year, I was lured back to a cell phone when others said it was hard to connect with me. With the thousands of miles between us, I understood their dilemma. I missed hearing from them as frequently as I once did. So, I turned my cell phone back on.

Heads Up

Today, eight months later, Jesus said to me, “Don’t allow love for things of the world to seep into your heart through technology. Satan has released filth, evil, and temptations using today’s technology, for he will stop at nothing to snare My people. So be on your guard against his strategies by walking in discernment, wisdom, and balance every day.”

Suggestions for Self Control

I’ve learned a balanced lifestyle requires seeing the difference between the accepted behaviors of our society and a believer’s narrow path. So, I’m not advocating for diminishing technology in our lives but using self-control with practical guidelines:

  • Keep the cell phone out of the bedroom during sleeping hours. Then first thing in the morning, spend time praying and reading the Bible before checking the cell phone. Hebrews 5: 14, “Solid food is for the mature, who because of practice have their senses trained to discern good and evil.”
  • Set a specific amount of time for viewing social media and stick to your goal. Proverbs 25:28, “Like a city that is broken into and without walls is a man who has no control over his spirit.”
  • Prioritize relationship interactions by powering down cell phone use. Active listening involves eye-to-eye contact for empathy and trust to be involved in our relationships. Colossians 1:10, “Walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, to please Him in all respects, bearing fruit in every good work.”
  • Quit using a cell phone and return to a landline. It’s somewhat harsh, but it’s the only way to be set free in some cases—like mine. Matthew 22:37-38, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the great and foremost commandment.”

Ultimately, avoiding being obsessed with any technology negatively impacting our relationships with friends, family members, and, most importantly, Jesus—is the way to live.