Silent Night, Holy Night, Progress Our Savior is Born

I watched a fascinating video on YouTube a few weeks ago that effectively and artistically casted the vision for progress. I eagerly anticipate most of what is depicted. Yet I was struck by the paragraph attached to the video: “Watch how future technology will help people make better use of their time, focus their attention, and strengthen relationships while getting things done at work, home, and on the go.”

I read the above lines through a lens written by Doug Pagitt: “The Amish are keenly aware of the power of tools. They limit the scope of the tools they use because they know that tools change a culture…the choice of tools is made based on how that tool will impact the community.”

The Amish are mocked for their strict adherence to a legalistic lifestyle seemingly based on a longing for a past era. While I have no desire to “go Amish” I wonder if perhaps the joke may be on us. Which is wiser, to make drastic choices with intentionality, or to make incessant, incremental choices with little or no reflection?

Let’s be clear here: it is not our embrace of technology that is the problem. Anyone who truly holds to that view is ultimately forced to poop on the ground in order to retain their integrity. Rather, our problem often lies in embracing technology as the solution to the problem, whatever that may be.

This post surfaces nothing new–everyone has heard this before. But it’s not the unexamined life that isn’t worth living, it’s the unchanged life that’s not worth living.

Do the tools you use help you focus your attention, make better use of your time, and strengthen your relationships? In other words, do your tools make you a better person?Or does a combination of God’s work and your choices make you a better person? What is the impact of our tools on your community?

What will you do next in light of this?


About Tim Owens

I'm a husband, father, and Christ follower. I also live in Albany, NY, where I work as a pastor.
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