Distracted Maturity: Looking Back
Oh to be a kid again! To want to be up early, to be overly excited about simple things, and to dream of growing up to "be" something. All very healthy signs of a happy, growing child. Yet, as we became adults, suddenly the vigor faded, mounting responsibilities replaced the mystique of maturity, and soon we find ourselves at a sort of generational crossroads of maturity.
Admittedly, our generation is struggling with huge advances in technology. Our generation has seen the internet go from a single platform format (remember those days of picking up the phone, just to be met with digital beeps and static?), to cross-platform interfacing. All at ever increasing up/download speeds. We have gone from landlines tethered to walls, to smartphones worn on our wrists. Rarely do we pay more than a few cents (if anything) for long distance phone calls. Many have left paper, radio, and televisions, for tablets and smartphones as their primary source of information consumption. The intention of all this advancement was initiated in an effort to make life more efficient, and productive. Yet another irony has begun to emerge within our society. As a society, we have less interest in being efficient for productivity, but rather have begun blazing a plethora of avenues to inactivity. One has merely to meter the time spent on gaming, video streaming, news feed scrolling, and messaging to see hours consumed with no real positive, beneficial result. Leisure is no longer a planned space of time in the day or week, but a priority that all other responsibilities conflict with. All with appearing to have no previous generation that mastered these issues as they are presented to us today.
Enter, praise the Lord, the Scriptures. In Titus we see a letter written by the Apostle Paul to a young church planter. Titus was responsible for planting churches on the island of Crete. Among other immoral proclivities, the people of Crete were known to consume their days in leisure, and Paul exhorts Timothy to "rebuke them sharply" for these things. Maybe the real answer to our struggle with our quantum leap in time consuming technology lies back, nearly two-thousand years in history on this small island in the Mediterranean. To look back, and have an honest, yet uncomfortable check on what our priorities in life have become.
We will venture, Lord willing, to evaluate several points of this issue in the coming weeks. However, before any real discussion can be made. Before progress can ever take hold, there must first be an expectation of introspection. This is what the Apostle Paul intended to be understood as he was led to pen I Corinthians 10:11-13
"Now all these things happened unto them for our ensamples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come. Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall. There hath no temptation taken you, but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not have you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it."
Truly, there is a problem. If we are honest with ourselves, we may find the problems are deeper rooted, and more destructive than we are willing to admit. However, if we do not "take heed", we may find ourselves on the verge of collapse as a society, and find the collateral damage is heart breaking.
On the contrary, if we accept the hard truths of God's Word, embracing the correction of the Holy Spirit, we will surely find it "yieldeth the peacable fruit of righteousness." (Hebrews 12:11)
Hebrews 12:1-29 KJV
 Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset [us], and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,  Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of [our] faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.  For consider him that endured such contradiction of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds.  Ye have not yet resisted unto blood, striving against sin.  And ye have forgotten the exhortation which speaketh unto you as unto children, My son, despise not thou the chastening of the Lord, nor faint when thou art rebuked of him:  For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth.  If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not?  But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then are ye bastards, and not sons.  Furthermore we have had fathers of our flesh which corrected [us], and we gave [them] reverence: shall we not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of spirits, and live?  For they verily for a few days chastened [us] after their own pleasure; but he for [our] profit, that [we] might be partakers of his holiness.  Now no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised thereby.  Wherefore lift up the hands which hang down, and the feeble knees;  And make straight paths for your feet, lest that which is lame be turned out of the way; but let it rather be healed.  Follow peace with all [men], and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord:  Looking diligently lest any man fail of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble [you], and thereby many be defiled;  Lest there [be] any fornicator, or profane person, as Esau, who for one morsel of meat sold his birthright.  For ye know how that afterward, when he would have inherited the blessing, he was rejected: for he found no place of repentance, though he sought it carefully with tears.  For ye are not come unto the mount that might be touched, and that burned with fire, nor unto blackness, and darkness, and tempest,  And the sound of a trumpet, and the voice of words; which [voice] they that heard intreated that the word should not be spoken to them any more:  (For they could not endure that which was commanded, And if so much as a beast touch the mountain, it shall be stoned, or thrust through with a dart:  And so terrible was the sight, [that] Moses said, I exceedingly fear and quake:)  But ye are come unto mount Sion, and unto the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to an innumerable company of angels,  To the general assembly and church of the firstborn, which are written in heaven, and to God the Judge of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect,  And to Jesus the mediator of the new covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling, that speaketh better things than [that of] Abel.  See that ye refuse not him that speaketh. For if they escaped not who refused him that spake on earth, much more [shall not] we [escape], if we turn away from him that [speaketh] from heaven:  Whose voice then shook the earth: but now he hath promised, saying, Yet once more I shake not the earth only, but also heaven.  And this [word], Yet once more, signifieth the removing of those things that are shaken, as of things that are made, that those things which cannot be shaken may remain.  Wherefore we receiving a kingdom which cannot be moved, let us have grace, whereby we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear:  For our God [is] a consuming fire.