How to Create Healthy Family Culture when it comes to Technology Devices
As a culture, we have become utterly dependent on our devices. They make life convenient and efficient, and supplement boredom with ease. Kara reminds us of the importance and how do-able it is for our families to have a healthy relationship regarding our technology devices. Enjoy this repeat publishing from two years ago that is still so relevant even amidst the life we’re experiencing with COVID-19 causing so much change.
“Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what is God’s will – his good, pleasing and perfect will.” Romans 12:2
So often, what we experience on our devices consumes our mental space, emotional state and distracts us from our relationships with God and others. The main messages of our day glow from the screens in our hands. How might this affect our own hearts, minds and souls, let alone our relationships with others? Instead of solely restricting screen time for our kids, how do we begin to shape the culture of how our family relates to technology? Let us be families who can engage with technology without being consumed by our devices.
1. Create family boundaries with devices. How might you describe your family’s relationship with technology? Do you have any guardrails to keep technology in its proper place? Consider implementing some of these boundaries and/or creating your own.
- Give devices a curfew and charging station outside of bedrooms.
- Consider turning phones off one hour a day, one day a week, one week a year.
- Implement a morning routine prior to checking any device.
- Delete social media apps over the weekend or for an extended season.
- Use devices with a purpose, together, rather than alone.
- 2. Be present with God and one another. If you’re like me there moments throughout the day where I tend to ‘check out’ on my device. Let’s consider how to make the most of these moments by connecting with God and others.
- Make car time, conversation time.
- Let’s set our device aside and get creative playing with our little ones.
- Find a place outside to enjoy our lunch break and leave our device in the office.
- Enjoy the quietness after kids are asleep to connect with your spouse, read a book or work on a project around the house.
- 3. Saturate ourselves in Truth. When we are occupied with the messages and images we see on our screens, we are bound believe lies.
- “How are they able to travel so much?
- I wish we could afford to travel.
- Didn’t she just have a baby? My body has never looked that good.
- They have so much fun as a family. When did we get so boring?”
We begin to measure who we are against others. Instead, let us saturate ourselves in the Truth of God’s Word about who we are and better yet, Whose we are. Devote time to the Lord prior to checking social media. Post Scripture throughout the house. Set a reminder of Truth as the screen background. Recite Bible verses as a family on the way to school. Listen to worship music.
As we engage with our devices, let us be mindful of what we’re taking in and how that affects our inner world as well as those we are relating with. We can do this!
What are your thoughts like after spending a lengthy amount of time on a phone or iPad? Consider what activities might be more life-giving. Brainstorm with your family, and create a plan of how to be purposeful with your devices.