Going Offline

Recently I read the book Holy Parenting: Making the Common Sacred by Benjamin Kerns. I was really touched by this book. One of the things that made me stop and think for a while was when the author talked about taking a fast from being online as a way to stay connected to your family. I thought about that for a while.

I was convicted of how frequently I am on the Internet- either at the computer, through my phone or Kindle. I am very guilty of this while I'm nursing, while Silas is eating and playing, even in the evenings when Brett is home. Now I'm not sitting on the computer for hours on end neglecting my family and home, but I have been convicted of all those minutes that I have stolen away with the intention of having a few minutes of "me-time." Not that me-time is bad, rather it is very important to have personal time to re-fresh and re-energize. Nor is the Internet bad for that matter either. I have just been personally convicted of how I spend my minutes each day.

I should be looking forward to play with my kids, and interacting with husband iinstead of looking forward to check Facebook, Pinterest, or favorite blogs. I have also noticed how I have been spending time doing these things before I even spend time in the Word or prayer, and some days I'm not even doing either.

So here is the plan I have come up with to help me become more intentional with my family, and free time. Starting tomorrow, November 1, I'm going (mostly) offline. Here are my rules:
  1. No Facebook
  2. No Pinterest
  3. No Swagbucks
  4. No random Internet surfing
  5. No daily blog reading- this one might be the hardest for me because there are about 5 blogs that I enjoy reading on a daily basis, but I have also been convicted of how much I compare myself to these women and then fell like a failure. I often feel these women/moms have it all together- perfect moms, perfect homes, perfect routines. So I need to stop reading these for a period of time.
Here are my few exceptions:
  1. E-mail- but not daily, rather only once or twice a week because there are a few things that I am accountable for through e-mails
  2. Shutterfly- this is how I share photos of my kids with family, plus I have already started a few Christmas gifts
  3. You Version- my daily Bible reading plan is through YouVersion which is only accessed through the Internet
  4. Google- only if I really need to look up something that I need the Internet for.
  5. My plan is be offline through the whole month of November, but I know Thanksgiving weekend I will be online because of trying to score some Black Friday/Cyber Monday Christmas deals. My goal is focus on re-prioritizing how I spend my time, mainly in regards to my family, as well as my spiritual life.

I need to be looking forward to spending time with God through reading His Word and communicating through prayer.

I need to be enjoying every moment with my precious children because they won't be so little for to much longer.

I need to be investing more into my marriage because I have seen to many marriages crumble in my family due to lack of priorities.

I need to be focusing on all the wonderful gifts that God has blessed me with, and since November is the month of Thanksgiving (my favorite holiday) what better month than any to take an online fast and focus on everything that I am grateful for.

So I will check back in on December 1 to share my update of my progress and struggles. Also please note that this is a personal fast for me. I don't think that everyone needs to give up Facebook or other online activities to have meaningful time with the Lord, their children, or their husbands.

rachel  – (October 31, 2012 at 1:46 PM)  

Love this! I might need to consider a similar fast myself, even though email is a necessity for my job.

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