I’ve been feeling convicted lately that my coping mechanisms for overwhelm are not actually helping me. They are mind-numbing rather than restful. Oftentimes, after a long work day, or a mentally exhausting day, my body is worn out, my mind is worn out, but I’m not tired enough to fall asleep. So, I fiddle around with my phone. Watching stupid FB reels or playing Solitaire. Nothing too damaging… or is it?
The older I get the more I realize how few moments I actually have left to live. My life must be at least half-way over, maybe even more than half way, and I am wasting precious hours staring at my phone, despite the fact that it’s wearing out my hands, eyes, mind. And I feel it. We can’t numb our brain then expect it function optimally when we want it to work. I feel the effects of the numbing.
I also realize there’s only so much space in my 3 lb. brain for retaining information. If I fill the space with random FB scrolling, what happens to the really important things that require some of that mental real estate? There is no room left for the valuable stuff. I’ve juggled too many balls.
But so far, I’ve only diagnosed a problem and told you why it bothers me. I’ve told you that my life is waning and I am wasting it. Still, there is no problem without a solution. God doesn’t leave us high and dry. The deepest problem is what I am sacrificing with my mindless scrolling. I’m substituting true rest. I’m wasting the moments where I don’t have anything “productive” to do, but rather could simply enjoy the Presence of God and His Word. I could lay my head on the pillow and talk to Him, resting my soul as I fade into bodily rest. Or I could fill my mind with the treasures of Truth on the ancient pages of Genesis to Revelation.
It’s easy to feel frustrated by the scrambled-up life we’re living, and forget that there’s always a way of escape. Repentance doesn’t just mean turning from sin, but also turning towards righteousness. These convictions aren’t meant to condemn but to invite. God isn’t convicting me so I will feel self-deprecating for all I’ve lost, but so I won’t lose any more. He is inviting me to draw near.
I am grateful for His conviction, and even more grateful that He grants me repentance. Last night, I ignored my phone and got the most restful rest I’ve had since… well, probably since the last time I did that. I plan to do that every night (feel free to ask how it’s going). My mental state is far too precious, as are my eyes, mind, hands. But above all, my soul. Because what I’m really sacrificing when I waste the moments of my life is the intimacy God is inviting me into in the cracks and crevices of stillness.