It’s been almost a week since I deleted my social media apps from my phone and entered into this awkward form of silence with myself. I’m not sure what I thought it would be like exactly. Well, that’s not totally true. I believed I would be super productive. And in ways I was.
Just not in the ways I thought I’d be.
I found I had time to finish reading a book. I completed another lesson in my writing group. I organized and planned my writing schedule. I started reading through the Psalms. I considered why I’m writing a book at all.
And then, as part of a writing exercise, I tried being still and listening for God.
I discovered I know very little about that. I found it almost impossible for me to not move, as though movement and productivity themselves prove that I’m drawing breath.
I spent the week watching my children go through the motions of being children. They offered me their hearts and I recorded them in pictures and notes in my journal.
I didn’t share them.
I tucked those treasures into the secret places of my soul and found they meant no less when the world went by completely unaware of their beautiful offerings.
It frightened me though.
Because my first reaction to these miracle moments was to turn and share them with the world. And I began to wonder, “Does the act of sharing every moment of our lives diminish the wonder of it? Do we lose the sacredness of the everyday when all that we are is on display?”
I think it’s possible.
I think it’s possible to become too entrenched and connected to our likes, and shares, and comments that we lose the art God is making in our lives. We’re forever busy, trying out filters on our pictures, convinced that things would look better in a different light, that we miss the beauty of the mess.
The strange refraction of light off the snow in our daughter’s face, the way the flakes settled on our son’s impossibly long eyelashes, the sheer joy of it all as they play for the first time in the freshly fallen powder. These gifts can be lost as we rush to document them on social media.
We need a balance.
I need a balance.
A way to stay connected and to encourage one another without exploiting ourselves to the culture that seeks to absorb us.
I don’t yet know how to achieve that kind of balance but I’m leaning into the Father to find it. This week as I read through Psalm 16 I was reminded of David, a man himself, divided among many things. He sings to God in verse 5,
“Lord, you alone are my portion and my cup;”
Maybe the way to keep our heart’s deepest blessings sacred is to be satisfied in the one who gave them. Maybe the way to be still is to learn to be filled with the silence of Him.
Maybe the way we navigate the electronic jungle is to hold His offerings in our hands and believe that we lack no good thing.
That His portion is enough to feed our soul hungry longing for more.