Recently I spoke at a baccalaureate at a Christian school. When asked to be the speaker, I thought, “I’d love to, but what do you tell high school seniors while sprinkling spiritual tidbits on top?” Someone suggested that it might be helpful to read this book as I considered my topic: Reclaiming Conversation: The Power of Talk in a Digital Age – by Sherry Turkle. I took the advice, and not only did it jumpstart my thinking about today’s young people, but it whet my appetite for gaining a clearer understanding of today’s world of technology. I found the information from her book and other sites on the Internet alarming. Let me share a few statistics.
- 92% of children under the age of 2 already have “digital shadows” (that is, learning to hold digital devices).
- 1 in 5 divorces blame Facebook for its cause.
- 18% of social media users can’t go even a few hours without checking Instagram, Twitter, or other sites.
So what’s so harmful about all that? My studies revealed these problems:
- Isolation tendencies. People walk around in their own little worlds.
- Lack of social skills. People find face-to-face conversation difficult.
- Warped sense of reality. People see only the BEST of others – (Everyone is a rock star! Right?)
- Additional stress. People feel the subconscious demand to stay “connected”.
So what did the researchers suggest in slowing down this tsunami of social media frenzy that can’t be reversed? UNPLUG! Yes, it sounds so obvious. It’s a simple—albeit quite difficult for some—fix to this alluring addiction. Yet what would happen if we chose to unplug more frequently and be present in this life? What if we chose to be more present while enjoying relationships with conversation? What if we chose to be more present by communing with God through reading His Word, meditation, and prayer?
If ever a woman needed to unplug from the busyness of life, it’s a single mom. Amen? That’s why Arise Ministries reinvented Survive ‘N’ Thrive to a fabulous one day event – Survive ‘N’ Thrive Unplugged – a full day overflowing with relevant topics, laughter, and an opportunity for God to refresh the soul. With 12 speakers sharing only 15 minutes each (much like TED Talks), every single mom is certain to be rebooted for her single mom journey. Here’s a sampling of the topics for the day:
- Accepting What Is
- Be Your Child’s Best Parent not Their Best Friend
- Beyond Bitterness
- Balancing Work and Home
- Prayer POWER
- And MORE! MORE! MORE!
And to top it off, we have Charlie Hall leading us in worship. It’s going to be the BEST yet! The truth is, friend, whether we’re single or married, God wants to invigorate our walk with Him by enabling us to unplug from the chaos of the world and unburden the weights that we carry around (you know, those encumbrances we never mention on Facebook!)
So hooray for the upcoming Survive ‘N’ Thrive Unplugged event on June 24 in OKC. Yes, stay off all the social media sites for a while…but wait… before you do, can you stay on your sites ONE MORE MINUTE and spread the word about Unplugged? (ha!)
Check out Unplugged info HERE! Registration ends this Friday, June 16th. Can’t wait!