Yesterday morning I went to First Watch for breakfast. It was an overcast, dreary kind of morning. An inside day. Perfect for breakfast out. Evidently we were not the only ones that thought so. There was a wait.
As we sat on the bench awaiting available seating, the FIRST thing we noticed as we WATCHed everyone waiting around us, was that they were all on their cell phones. Three different couples were all ignoring each other and giving their full attention to the pieces of plastic and metal in their hands. Oh, one couple was not. They were pleasantly ignoring each other and each reading their own piece of the Sunday paper. That was novel! A real paper copy! No e-edition!
It reminded us of a post on Facebook we’d seen earlier that morning.
How I wish sometimes it was 1995. Life wasn’t so bad back then. Or better yet, maybe what if WiFi would just take a holiday. Not go away forever.
Oh don’t get me wrong. I am as addicted to it as much as the next guy. No internet: No blog. No Facebook. No Pinterest. No online bill paying. No online shopping. No emails. Basically what we’re looking at here is limited communication and no life as we know it. But, just every once in awhile, a break, a real conversation with eye contact with real people would be greatly appreciated.
Then this couple walked in. I caught sight of them through the plant dividing our two benches. And this is what I saw at my First Watch.
They were different. They engaged in conversation. With each other and with us. And they not only made eye contact, they actually touched! They sat patiently waiting for their table hand in hand. They were too precious for words!
They instilled hope back into my world! People could still engage with each other! I ask each of you to please help me in reaching and teaching our future generations just that! To engage with each other! To cross the barriers of different generations. Different ethnicity. You’ll learn something!
Teach them to touch. To speak to others in safe environments. To share. To love. Those things we learned in pre-K. That’s called living!
If you don’t have a hand you can readily hold as you sit patiently waiting your turns in life, don’t automatically reach for your cell phone for something to hold instead each time. It’s plastic and metal. As much as we all seem to believe it holds the answers to everything, it does not. (Although google is pretty amazing!) The almighty smartphone is really not all that smart. Not by itself any way. We rely way too much on it and give it way too much credit. And attention. Put it away. Engage with others around you. Look and listen to what is going on in our world. It’s so much more fulfilling!
And if you haven’t already, you might want to make sure you’re engaged with Jesus. He’s omnipotent. He’s omniscient. He’s always with us. He’s smarter than any smartphone. No battery or smart card or WiFi or GPS needed. And when it comes to us,
He’s always on First Watch.
Nevertheless, I am continually with you; you hold my right hand.
Love and laughter,