By Chaplain (Capt.) Matthew Ailstock
Would you reminiscence with me for just a moment? I want you to try remembering the very first cell phone you ever had. Do you remember? Can you see it in your mind? At the time, that giant walkie-talkie-looking thing was thought to be a stroke of genius, a technological masterpiece. Little did we know that our lives would never be the same.
I remember getting my first cell phone as if it were yesterday. I couldn’t wait to rip open the box so that I could start programming all of my friends’ numbers into the phone; I remember having to type in all those numbers, one by one, viewing them on that amazing 1.5-inch black and white screen.
Now think back with me, if you can, to life before cell phones, specifically smartphones. Didn’t life seem much simpler? Do you ever find yourself longing to return to those days — before email, text messaging and social media?
Why is this?
Is it because our identity has become so enmeshed with the online image that we have created of ourselves? Is it from the anxiety that comes as a result of constant comparisons between our real, messy and hard lives with the seemingly perfect lives of those presented to us online? Have worry, anxiety and fear begun to take up residence within your heart?
If so, there is hope. Maybe you feel like you have hit a wall in your relationship with God. If so, there is hope. Maybe you feel like your prayers aren’t making it past the ceiling. If so, there is hope.
Could it be that there is something or someone in your life that you treasure more than the living God? If so, then perhaps it is time for you to do some house cleaning. Consider what person or thing you treasure the most.
What consumes your mind, your money and your affection? Matthew 6:21 says, “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”
Take a look at your life and see where your priorities are. If God isn’t your No. 1 right now, I want to challenge you to rearrange some things so that he is. He is our hope. As you do this, watch and see how the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your heart and mind in Christ Jesus.
(Editor’s note: Ailstock is the General Leonard Wood Army Community Hospital chaplain.)