Summary: We respond to the sounds of our phones, we respond to notifications, we respond to comments and reactions, we will listen to the voices of others but what about God? Are you getting His notifications?

Are you getting His notifications?

1 Kings 19:11-12 (KJV) And he said, Go forth, and stand upon the mount before the LORD. And, behold, the LORD passed by, and a great and strong wind rent the mountains, and brake in pieces the rocks before the LORD; but the LORD was not in the wind: and after the wind an earthquake; but the LORD was not in the earthquake: 12 And after the earthquake a fire; but the LORD was not in the fire: and after the fire a still small voice.

I. Getting notifications and information; even the way we speak is associated with our phones. Our phones have become part of our everyday life.

A. We now follow people on Instagram, Twitter, Tik Tok, and Facebook. We send friend requests through Facebook, we publish our thoughts for all to see rather it be “tweets”, “what’s on your mind” or updating a blog. We have stories, reels, vlogs, and posts everywhere and it has been embraced by people and corporations. We see the logos for these social sites splashed over everything from dog food to gourmet restaurants.

1. Everyone is now a brand or a self-labeled influencer and can be found on their branded @ page or hashtag. Some even measure their social status by how many “friends”, “followers”, likes and shares they have. Being viral is a way of life now.

2. We no longer wait until the next day to get yesterdays news. We get our information in real time now. News is no longer delivered by members of the press, field reporters, or news anchors. Most of our news comes through those with the fastest fingers, Wi-Fi, or cell service.

3. Children now don’t play with toys they watch someone else do it on their YouTube channel. They will watch other kids and some adults play with toys or open toys rather than do it themselves. Parents now are scripting their child’s early years for a pay day.

B. There was a time when having a car, a job, or a home mattered. Now it’s more important to have a phone in your hand then a roof over your head.

1. When we went to Guatemala, we would drive through some of the poorest villages and see women washing their clothes on rocks and checking their cell phones (probably updating their status on FB “Another day at the Laundry Mat”) these people still cooked on wood stoves and had no electricity, but knew how to update their status.

2. Truly we live in a time when now nothing will be restrained from them, which they have imagined to do. I read several years ago before smart phones were main stream that one communication company advertised that they were now reversing the curse of Babel. Science Fiction is now science fact. We have surpassed Dick Tracy’s wrist watch and Captain Kirk’s communication device.

C. We have even become conditioned by the sounds of our phones. Let’s just try a little social experiment here, how many of you have a smart phone? Let me ask you a few questions and in your mind and be honest with yourself answer then honestly.

1. *You don’t like to turn off your phone, *Constantly checking your phone for missed messages, emails, notifications or calls even when you don’t get a notification tone, *Charging your battery even when your phone is almost fully charged, *Taking your phone with you everywhere you go, even into the bathroom, *Sleeping with your phone or keeping it next to you while you sleep, *Repeatedly checking to make sure that you have your phone, *Fear of being without Wi-Fi or being able to connect to a cell network, *Worrying about negative things happening and not being able to call for help, *Stressing over being disconnected from one’s online presence or identity, *Skipping activities or planned events in order to spend time on the mobile device, *feeling your phone vibrating or ring when it doesn’t.

2. If you answered yes to any of those questions you have a psychological attachment to your phone and have what Psychologist’s call “NOMOPHOBIA” which is an abbreviated form of "no-mobile-phone phobia." For those that feel the phone vibrating when it’s not you have “PHANTOM RINGING SYNDROME”.

3. Researchers say the reason why people check their phones so much is because of dopamine (the hormone of” happiness”). So, every time we see a notification, e- mail, or hear the phone ringing, the dopamine level is rising because we believe something new and interesting is happening and might be missing out on something. The problem is that we can’t know in advance what will happen or what that notification will be about so the feeling to keep checking occurs; your phone is like a mini slot machine, which either can make you feel good or bad.

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