Published On: 26 November, 2010|By |

We’re used to saying “when can I reach you?” But the ubiquity of technology has made the inverse just as relevant. When can’t I reach you?

Is there a time in your day/week when I can’t reach you? A time that you’ve set aside exclusively for other priorities? There is nothing about our culture that will encourage you to do so. In fact, the marketers still assume we’re just sitting around wishing we had some way to be even more connected (if that’s even possible).

I’m not just talking about time with God. I’m talking about other times as well. Time to think. Time to work. Time to rest. Time to focus on a particular relationship.

Let me propose a simple test to help you discern whether you may be too connected. For one week, do not answer any piece of communication any sooner than the following guidelines:

  • Phone/text – 8 hours.
  • All other (including facebook, email, etc.) – 48 hours.

If this exercise makes you panic, or if when you try it, your friends start asking what happened to you, you may need to consider the possibility that you are too connected.

We all need times when the phone is turned off, the email is shut down, and we’re logged off of facebook. Perhaps we could use some of those times to reflect on the fact that, for many of us,1 not one single form of communication we’re attached to was commonly available 20 years ago.

Grace to you.

1 I am of course excluding those who still, for some odd reason, use landlines. [insert tongue in cheek]

About the Author: Jason Harris

Jason loves to communicate God's word both in the local church and at conferences and retreats. Jason has been involved with Worship Music since 1996 and InFocus since 2005. Jason has degrees in theology, music, accounting, and research and is currently a PhD candidate and lecturer in the College of Business, Law, and Governance at James Cook University, Cairns. Jason is also a pastor at CrossPoint Church. You can contact Jason at jason@jasonharris.com.au.

7 Comments

  1. PJ 26 November, 2010 at 6:43 am - Reply

    Interesting piece. Love a bit of pop sociology…thanks.

    Sadly ‘electronic connectedness’ is an indispensable part of life, it goes a bit like this –

    “Time to think” = using wikipedia and the vast resources of the www, why not set out those thoughts on a blog…

    “Time to work” = whose job doesn’t require email or internet use these days!?

    “Time to rest” = catching up with the newspapers online, watching youtube or iview, listening to music downloaded from itunes, ‘facebooking’

    “Time to focus on a particular relationship” = via text or email, who actually talks!?

  2. RoSeZ 26 November, 2010 at 4:57 pm - Reply

    “We all need times when the phone is turned off, the email is shut down, and we’re logged off of facebook.”

    But…but… what else are we supposed to do?

    “Perhaps we could use some of those times to reflect on the fact that, for many of us,1 not one single form of communication we’re attached to was commonly available 20 years ago.”

    Yup. So glad I was born in Generation Y. =P

  3. Steve 26 November, 2010 at 8:26 pm - Reply

    Your dead right Jason.

    For me there is nothing better than spending time completely out of reach, and away from all the trappings of modern life like mobile phones, the internet, TV, radio, etc.
    Last year, our family spent three blissful days hunting and fishing in a remote location while on holiday. It was strange, even a bit scary at first but after a while you get used to it.

    Since my work involves me being on call at times, I yearn for those times where absolutely no one can contact me.

  4. Alen 26 November, 2010 at 9:29 pm - Reply

    I guess this explains your response times with your emails, Jason :D :P

  5. Steve 6 December, 2010 at 11:44 am - Reply

    Is anybody home at teaminfocus? Have you gone walkabout Jason?

    Miss the blogs here. Hope everything is OK.

  6. Jason Harris 6 December, 2010 at 1:04 pm - Reply

    Hey! Yeah, we’re home. We just came to the end of the segment and everyone’s enjoying the rest. =D

    I’m working on assembling the next team but I’m considering starting again in January. Thanks for noticing. =P

  7. Steve 7 December, 2010 at 7:06 pm - Reply

    Ok, no worries. Have a merry Christmas and Happy New Year everybody at teaminfocus.

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