As I mentioned before I’ve given up sleeping in for Lent. It hasn’t been too difficult and I’ve spent that extra time in the morning with Jesus. I’m satisfied with my choice of what I give up for Lent. However, there is something else I could have given up that might have produced even more fruit.
I love playing video games but in the past few years I haven’t had as much time as I once did. Instead of playing video games I spend time with my wife, I work and I do a lot of blogging. I’ve made those activities a higher priority than killing dragons and sniping aliens. While I don’t spend that much time with a controller in my hand, I have started spending a lot of time with my phone in my hand.
Smart phones and tablets are great inventions. Both my iPhone and iPad help my productivity; I really do get a lot more done with them. They also hurt my productivity; I don’t get as much done with them. It’s a paradox: my iPhone and iPad both help and hinder my productivity.
The hindrance to my productivity comes from the games I play on my iPhone. Before I had to be at home in front of the TV with a few hours to get some good gaming in. Now I can get some gaming in waiting in line at Target, sitting at my desk or while sharing a meal with friends and family. The constant access to fun and entertaining games is both fantastic and dangerous. Instead of getting work done or engaging with those around us, we can simply pull out our phones and attempt to get a higher score on Temple Run 2 or beat the next level on Candy Crush Saga.
Just this past weekend I celebrated some birthdays with my in-laws. We were all gathered together at my sister-in-law’s home for some food and fellowship. While I took full part in the food, I was a little less engaged with the fellowship. There were a few times where I simply sat on the couch and tried evading demon monkeys in Temple Run. I didn’t spend the entire time with my phone in hand, but it was tempting to block everyone out and just play on my phone. Not because I don’t like my in-laws, but because the draw of getting a higher score or beating a level is so great.
I know giving up sleeping in is doing good for my soul. I think more good could have been done for my soul had I also given up iPhone games. They’re a great way to pass time and let our brains unwind. If we spend too much time with them, though, our brains may unwind too much and we’ll be left more connected to the phone in our hands than the people around us.
What mobile game are you currently playing? How do you keep it from taking too much of your time?