It was a regular day for me. Got up and dressed and hit the road for several meetings with pastors across the state. As I was driving down beautiful and boring Blue Grass Parkway, I began to feel like something was wrong or out of place, as if I had misplaced or forgot something really important. I knew I had packed everything needed for the day, even had my special home brewed coffee with me, favorite sunglasses, a few CD’s for the road…but something just didn’t feel right. For the life of me I could not figure it out. I kept my eyes on the road as I drove but in my mind I knew something was amiss. Then about 25 miles down the road, all of the synapses of my brain finally lit up and it hit me… I forgot my cell phone! I never forget my cell phone, but because I left it on a different charger during the night that is exactly what I had done.
What was I going to do? The commercial phrase “can you hear me now?” became a nightmare for me because I could not hear anyone now. What if a few of my appointments had canceled and they left the message on my voice mail which I could not check? What if someone really needed to talk with me right now? The drive was too far to head back so I just faced the fact that I would miss some calls and could not make some calls I had planned to make. Today would be a day minus my cell phone. Would I survive?
You see I have had a cell phone close by my side since the 80’s. (1980’s not 1880’s) I don’t know how many I have completely worn out or replaced as the technology improved. A cell phone is now standard equipment for pastors and most church folks. I even stopped preaching during church one Sunday and answered the cell phone of one of my members. The person on the other line was quite surprised! We all depend on this technology to stay in touch and do our ministry and work more effectively. We have forgotten what it was like to be gone all day and not have a clue what has transpired on the home front. With cell phones we know almost everything that has happened at home even before we walk through the front door.
After accepting the fact that I would just be out of touch for a few hours I began to think, yes on occasion I do think. My thoughts were these…Do I depend on the Holy Spirit to be with me throughout the day to the same degree as I depend on my cell phone? If I leave the house without my quiet time and asking the Lord to guide, bless, and use me that day, does it bother me as much as not having my cell phone with me? Could I spend a little more time praying than talking on my cell phone?
2 Peter 1:21 says, “For prophecy never had its origin in the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit. ” NIV
Part of being a disciple is “being carried along by the Holy Spirit.” That means we depend on Him to supply all our needs every second of the day with or without a cell phone. Today, stay in touch with the real source of all communication: the Lord. Can you hear me now?
By the way, the day went fine even without my beloved cell phone by my side. Everyone showed up for my appointments on time and I arrived back home that evening and nothing major had taken place except for my wife’s stunning statement when I walked through the door, “I can’t believe you forgot your cell phone!”