Maybe technology has not always been a part of your life, but right now you’re probably reading this article on a cell phone and, if not, surely you have one close by.
Technology has made a profound mark on society, and it’s not going away. Members of Generation Z — generally those born beginning around 1995 — are “digital natives,” meaning they grew up with technology and became familiar with its many functions naturally. And there is no data to indicate that the next generation will be any less influenced by technology.
In John 15:4, Jesus said, “Remain in me, and I in you” (CSB). Remaining in Jesus is the only way to have the abundant life He spoke of in John 10. And while many of us understand what Jesus is saying — that He wants you to invest in your relationship with Him — we are prone to wander. Instead of remaining in Him, we end up remaining in Siri, Alexa, Google and our many social media platforms. Our personal relationship with Christ suffers, which diminishes our ability to be spiritual leaders for our children.
Furthermore, if you allow your children to have access to electronic devices, it is essential that you understand the potential pitfalls that can harm them.
We don’t need to discard technology. Instead, we should find a way to redeem it.
Here are three practical ways a family can use technology in a positive way:
- Use technology to aid you in discipling your children.
A simple Google search or conversation with a church leader in your life will yield many online resources that might work for you. You don’t have to come up with a starting place on your own to begin the conversation. You only have to guide your child to the truth or share with them how you learned the hard way.
- Actually use your Bible app.
The YouVersion Bible app is a great resource. Many people have the app but may not use it. One of the best features of this app is that it can be used similarly to social media. Download the app on each phone in your family, become friends on the app and select a reading plan that’s right for you. Plans include topical studies, traditional Bible reading plans and more. But most importantly, carve out some face time to talk about what you have read.
- Learn how to use new social media.
New social media platforms continue to emerge, and if you have a teenager, they probably already have an account. Take time to learn about these new technologies, and use what you learn to guide your child to a God-honoring way of using the various forms of social media that are available. You will be glad you did. And so will your child — even if it is much later in their life.
Technology can be a true blessing when used for the kingdom of God. Take time to learn more about what is available, and ask God for wisdom as you guide your family in the use of technology.