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It will be hard…

June 2nd, 2017 by Stephen Bauman

It will be hard, I know.  But you owe it to yourself, your well-being, and the well-being of those you love, too.  I don’t know why it’s so hard, really, given the positive payoffs.  It’s likened to stepping away from an addiction.  I know what it means to fight the compulsive pull of the miserable repetitive behavior.

Here it is: it’s time to take a break from all things Trump.  Not forever, of course.  But the summer is nearly here, and the neurotic attachment to your technology for every scrap of late-breaking news, tweets, posts, pics, opinions, rants, whatnot and hooha is dragging you down into a rabbit hole of inconsequential distraction while ramping up your touchy reptilian emotions and aggressive tribalistic tendencies.  You know what I’m talking about. Time for a break.

Time to create a quiet space for yourself.  I’m sitting in the midst of trees as I write this.  What a gift!  We’ve had plenty of rain this season and nature has responded resplendently.  Go find some and revel.  Listen to birdsong.  This can even be done in the city, but it requires intentionality.  We have wonderful parks and botanical gardens.  Visit without electronics.  Go for a run or a ride without earpods for once.  Choose to simply observe and listen.  It will be hard.

It’s also possible to detach from the addiction in your own home.  Here’s how you do it.  You turn off the technology—yes, all of it—find a comfortable chair, open an actual book and begin to read.  Do this at least once a day for an hour.  It will be hard, but you can do it.  In order for this to really work, though, you have to be clear you won’t check your technology.  You will want to, but you will resist and you will succeed.

Once you’re detached, experiment with listening for God’s voice.  It will be hard.  Your phone will make a noise because you forgot (or never really intended) to turn it off.  But you will resist because you know that listening for God’s voice is a far more important activity than checking your Facebook scroll or reading Trumps latest tweet, or indulging whatever addiction has enslaved you.

Summer is nearly here.  Time for a vacay, as they say…

Stephen Bauman

Rev. Dr. Stephen P. Bauman is the Senior Minister at Christ Church.