Monday, June 14, 2010

Log Out. Sign Off. Unplug.

Hubby planned a wonderful weekend getaway for the two of us. He bought tickets for last Friday’s performance by the amazing gospel quartet, Ernie Haase and The Signature Sound in Bismarck, North Dakota. These guys are fabulous, especially in concert. I’m not the only person to think so—they just picked up a Grammy at the 52nd Grammy Awards ceremony.

After the concert, Hubby and I spent the night in Bismarck then drove west to Medora, a wonderful little town cuddled up next to the Montana/North Dakota border. Medora is billed as North Dakota’s #1 vacation spot, and after spending two days there, I heartily agree.

I’m a Texan and filled to the brim with Texas pride. I love the grandeur and variety of our landscape, from the Red River to the Rio Grande. But what I saw this weekend was a visual feast for these jaded old eyes. If I close them now, I can still see the painted canyons of the Badlands, the rocky crags of Theodore Roosevelt National Park, and the rolling emerald hills of the Little Missouri National Grasslands.

That said, I nearly missed a good portion of this wonderful scenery until I got a lesson from above on the importance of living in the precious present moment. It happened like this:

My husband Lee is the busiest person I’ve ever known. The man juggles the overwhelming demands of his life with one hand tied behind him and never seems to break a sweat. Yet when his Energizer Bunny ears start to sag, he’s smart enough to get away for a while and recharge.

Me? Not so smart. Several times on our journey, Lee would say, “Look at that” or “Wow, did you see that?” I’d glance up from my iPhone, too late, and he’d state the obvious: “Aw, you missed it.” I’d wonder briefly what I’d missed then shrug and dive right back into reading my email. Then it hit me like a message from above. My husband sought to share something with me, but I’d been too distracted to see.

This thought slid effortlessly into the next. How often does God desire to share something with us, but we’re too busy? How many times has He nudged our shoulders, but we’re so buried in emails, tweets, or status updates we fail to raise our heads in time? The heavenly reflection, gift, or insight whizzes past, and just that fast, we’ve missed it. Perhaps forever. This stuck me as achingly sad.

I put the phone away.

I’m a huge fan of technology and the Internet. I consider them gifts to writers, like cheesecake and chocolate. But with every gift comes the temptation to overindulge.

Who me? Guilty as charged.

So this distracted writer has officially placed herself on a www-diet. Not cold turkey, you understand, but I’m cutting down. Most importantly, I’m going to strive to live in the moment and recognize when it’s time to unplug.

The cheesecake and chocolate? Well. . .the Lord’s not finished with me yet.

The two pictures below are of our Sunday morning outdoor worship service. Awesome! Those that follow are examples of what I nearly missed with my nose buried in my iPhone:

My Bookshelf

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