It is amazing how much noise our favorite modern-day gadgets can make. Who would have thought, though, that the very contemporary gadgets that stimulate our senses so well also could make us deaf to our Shepherd’s voice?
But the unfortunate truth is that we actually can drown out our Lord’s voice, and this spiritual deafness of ours usually happens when, instead of being more immersed in the Word of God, we are immersed in what is playing on our 32” to 65” LED-LCD flat screen televisions, or very wrapped up in what is playing on our pocket, portable, and/or stationary radios. We also can drown out our Lord’s voice, when we let whatever is playing on our smallest MP3 players (or other portable media players) to our most elaborate hi-fi systems captivate us.
Similarly, we can drown out our Lord’s voice, when we are gripped by all of those multimedia digital files that we have downloaded from the Internet to be played back on our mobile media players, personal computers, and etcetera. These multimedia digital files not only can be saved but also copied, edited, and shared with other people. Therefore, we actually can drown out our Lord’s voice, when we become swamped by podcasts, songs, films, and videos our families, friends, and colleagues send to our e-mail inboxes, or post on our blogs or on the social networking sites we all are connected to via our PCs (desktops, laptops, notebooks), or via our tablet PCs, and/or our wi-fi smartphones. Likewise, drowning out our Lord’s voice also can come from being overwhelmed by the various mobile applications (apps) that are available for us to use on our cell phones, especially all of those numerous game apps, and so forth.
While 21st-century technology is indeed a blessing, it also can be a curse. Undeniably, this century’s technology has helped us accomplish life’s tasks faster and with greater precision. There is no doubt, thus, that today’s technological advancements have been a true blessing, especially where the Internet and communication are concerned. Still there are many technology critics who say that our easy access to the Internet and to the stored information (“memory”) in our smartphones have cursed us by making so many of us incapable of thinking for ourselves. For example, these technology critics say that because we rely on our smartphones’ “memory” more than we depend on our own brain’s memory for recalling telephone numbers, meeting notes, appointments, and so on, we end up having a difficult time remembering said information. Other technology critics say, for example, that today’s secondary and post-secondary students do not know how to act in society, if they do not have their own smartphone in hand, their own laptop at the ready, and their own portable e-Reader in the bag!
More important, as already suggested, modern-day technology also has cursed those of us who are believers by making it possible for us to become incapable of hearing our Shepherd, when He calls to us. Our Good Shepherd gently is calling our names, expecting us to respond favorably to His call so that He might lead us to a place where He already has been. To lead us there, our Good Shepherd has positioned Himself between danger and us, His sheep, but if our nifty technological gadgets are drowning out His voice, then we won’t be able to avoid the sure enough dangers that lie ahead of us, especially the dangers that exist in this world at such a time as this. As a result of us not being able to hear our Good Shepherd’s voice, the same devices that we use every day to save us from living a humdrum life also undoubtedly could expose us to very high degrees of peril, like bullying, identity theft, robbers, swindlers, schemers, interlopers, murderers, terrorists, rapists, sexual predators, lewd and lascivious activity, pornography, insomnia, introversion, memory loss, false doctrines, apostates, false christs, and so many more unshielded hazards.
The bottom line is that if we are using 21st-century technology to our detriment, then a change needs to take place. However, before we can understand that there needs to be a change, we must first find out if we are, indeed, unable to hear our Savior’s voice. If we have checked our hearing, to make sure we do not have a physical deficiency, and we have found out that our hearing is satisfactory, then perhaps all that we need to do is to spend less time using our modern-day gadgets. However, if after scaling back on our television viewing time, radio listening time, music playing time, online video watching time, and so forth, we discover that our hearing still has not improved (that we still cannot hear our Good Shepherd), then we need to find out exactly what is causing us to not hear His voice. The Word of God says:
Yeshua answered them, ‘I have already told you, and you don’t trust me. The works I do in my Father’s name testify on my behalf, but the reason you don’t trust is that you are not included among my sheep. My sheep listen to my voice, I recognize them, they follow me, and I give them eternal life….’ ~ John 10:25-28a, CJB
Consequently, if we are not able to hear His Voice, after making the immediate checks and necessary changes, then just maybe we are NOT His sheep! The Good News, however, is that we don’t have to continue in our spiritual deafness. In the Word of God, the apostle Paul writes that God says: “At the acceptable time I heard you; in the day of salvation I helped you” (cf. 2 Corinthians 6:2b, CJB; see also Isaiah 49:8). In other words, we should never let this “now” moment of Grace pass us by, for we might never get the opportunity again to receive the Gift of salvation. For this last reason, NOW is the day of salvation for every one of us who wants to be helped, who wants to be saved, and who wants to hear the Good Shepherd’s voice.
The cartoon used in this blog is from Joyful ‘toons.