I was envious
It was the first time I had come across one. They had it with them the whole time. It accompanied them, their constant companion, even when they skied down the mountain slopes.
For those too young, basically a low tech iPod. A cassette tapes recorder you could carry with you and listen to through headphones. To me as a tech-loving twenty-odd year old it was the next desirable thing. Indeed, someone has written that the world changed that day in 1979 when the Walkman was released. Now you could have your own personalised choice of music wherever you went. Ipod, Podcasts and more - all flowing from that moment 40+ years ago.
Today almost everywhere we go we see someone meditating on the screen in front of them. Many hours perhaps spent concentrating on reflecting on and being reflected in the screen that accompanies us everywhere: speaking to it, dwelling on it, enjoying it, listening to it, pondering it, being comforted by it, going to sleep with it, awakening the dawn by it. An Ever-Present Help
God, an Ever-Present Help
The screen and its big sisters and brothers act as
- baby sitter (Paw Patrol or whatever the children enjoy…)
- confessional - Oprah on TV
- therapy session (as we watch Judge Rinder and see people with struggles like ours or worse)
- sedative (a comfort at the end of a traumatic day)
- an adventure (whether you binge or wait patiently for the next instalment of your favourite drama)
- a counsellor (the TED talk or whatever you enjoy)
- an opening into the mystery and wonders of the universe (David Attenborough)
An ever-present help in these and many more ways
Embracing Life More Fully
As this has happened we have perhaps embraced life much more fully. We are much more globally aware, we know education is so much more than words. Images have again become powerful, captivating our imaginations as they did centuries ago. (Simply visit an ancient cathedrals and temples to see this.)
Download God's App The Universe Every Day
Let’s open our ears and eyes to the biggest App there could possibly be: the Universe.
- I open my eyes and the screen surround me
- I listen and there is sup-round sound
- I feel and know I am alive.
God is at work in all and through all of these: an ever-present help. This is very similar to mindfulness: being mindful of the theatre of God's goodness surrounding us every day. Psalm 19 speaks of this, The heavens declare the glory of God.
The Lord is my shepherd
God speaks to me though every encounter I have, everything I see, hear, feel. The Lord is my shepherd.
An Ever-Present Help
How about "downloading this app everyday by reading a psalm. Psalm 23 would be a good place to start. Psalms 121 and 139 are good places also.
Let us read the Bible then listen to the news.
That will help us get all in perspective, and respond with compassion and courage. For God is an ever-present help, revealed in and through all of creation.