Unwillingly, Unexpectedly, Unplugged…

I’m not much of a technology guy. In fact, I used to pride myself that I was one of the only people I knew who got through most of the 1980’s and into the 1990’s without computers in our business. I had used them in the late 1970’s but they were incredibly expensive and I didn’t really see the value of spending that kind of money on technology.

However, as our business grew, it was apparent that we needed some technology to help us track all the employees we had; and soon we were caught up in the rush to have the latest and greatest computers. Eventually, I sold our business back in 2000 and spent more of my time consulting. Although I cut down on the technology, I still had a business to run and now, twenty years later, I am heading into retirement.

As you all know, I write my posts several nights a week – I also have an iPhone and at one point, I was using about 7000 minutes a month on my phone speaking with clients. Now all that is fading away. But the real story tonight is that I take computers for granted now, not realizing that I am dependent on them – and several months ago I started having trouble with several of the keys on my keyboard sticking. I decided that I would just deal with it and re-type stuff that came out wrong due to the problem that I was having. After all, having a computer is no big deal, right?

Andrew, who is a Godsend when it comes to helping us with technology, thinks I had the problem because I tend to bang the keys pretty hard – after all, I learned to type on a manual typewriter (not even an electric one). I get teased about that from time to time but it is the truth. For my eighth grade graduation present, I received typing lessons so that I could go to the office each night and help my father with his office work. He couldn’t afford a secretary, so I worked at his office every evening after dinner during the week.

So… my current issue with the keys kept getting worse and Andrew suggested that I send the computer in to Apple for repair. To my surprise, Apple let me know that there had been a problem with my particular keyboard and they would replace it under warranty – but I would be without my computer for about 10 days. I didn’t think that much of it until it was gone.

However, I was forced to face how reliant I was on technology for even the simplest things in my life. And I am a creature of habit… I like sitting in my chair, writing my posts, as I am doing right now, while Janet has the TV on in the background. But my world was turned upside down when my technology left the building…

I took my computer to FedEx who then shipped it back to Apple. I almost felt naked. We have another computer in the house, but I am used to my own… I would rather not be on a computer unless I can use the one I am familiar with. So, I quit researching stuff, didn’t bother to seek answers to questions I had and I even tried to cut down on emails and other stuff – it’s difficult to type on those little phone keyboards.

By this past weekend, I felt a little freedom – not being so tied to technology to run my life. It felt good. I did break down and use Janet’s computer to write my last post, but other than that, I was unwillingly, unexpectedly, unplugged – but I kind of liked it… not the first day or two, but later in the week. It also occurred to me that I no longer need to be tied into the world the way I used to be. I don’t need to be attending all the leadership summits and subscribing to all the latest ways of doing things. We don’t have a thousand employees to keep track of, I don’t have a schedule to maintain and I can choose the things that I wish to devote my time to. I’ll just wait for God to hand me my next assignment. I don’t even know if it will include a computer…

I don’t need to force stuff and I can spend more time in communion with God. No pressure – just wait and listen… Then, this past Tuesday, my computer was returned and Andrew was kind enough to get it set up. I’m using it to write tonight…

But the biggest lesson I have learned from all this is that I can do without all the latest and greatest stuff. I can just sit, and wait… what started out as a scary inconvenience has turned out to be a blessing in disguise. The verse for tonight is something that Paul wrote to his young church at Thessalonica. Paul tells us, in 2 Thessalonians 3:16, “Now may the Lord of peace himself give you peace at all times and in every way. The Lord be with all of you.”

My encouragement this evening is that God wants each of us to have His peace – and sometimes, that comes at a price that we may initially be unwilling to pay. My prayer is that God will get through to us, one way or the other, so that we may enjoy peace and His greatest blessings for our lives. Have a great day in the Lord, grace and peace…

 
 
 
 

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