Technology and Covid-19
Prayer is so important for everything that is going on in the world today. We are praying for our friends and family here in the states that have been dealing with the virus and for those who have missed big life events because of it. We are praying for All Things New and Haiti because of how ill-equipped the country is to handle something like this. There is no way to predict what is going to happen there, but prayer is so important!
Covid-19 has made us change a lot about our lives. One of the things that I have been thinking about a lot is the huge role that technology has played in our lives during this time. We have been able to work from home, go to church from home, and do things remotely that we never would have thought possible. Ezekyal had a virtual doctor's appointment just the other day.
What I have been contemplating the most about this topic is how this time and our reliance on technology during this time may change our future. Basically, my question is:
Are the strengths or weaknesses of technology more evident through what we have been going through?
We have definitely seen the strengths. I have heard from churches who have had a higher "attendance" than ever before. There are some reports that people are getting more work accomplished from home than they were doing in their office. Meetings are happening through Zoom and other apps as if you were in the same place with the people in the meeting. Even the NFL draft happened remotely last night, and though I was not happy with the Jaguars first pick, I think their second pick was great.
The truth is that technology has allowed us to remain close and accomplish things that, just a few years ago, we would have never been able to do. It is a huge blessing when used correctly and I honestly do not know what we would have done if we had not progressed to this point technologically.
On the other hand, the weaknesses of technology have maybe shown themselves even more than its strengths. Even before the countrywide lock downs and shelter in place orders, our ability to communicate technologically was becoming slightly unhealthy. For instance:
- Texts were becoming more popular than phone calls.
- Phone calls were taking over the place of face-to-face interactions.
- Social media was becoming an acceptable way to communicate things that were never meant for that platform. (For instance, why on earth would a husband wish his wife "Happy Birthday" on Facebook?)
The weakness of technology as a form of communication is that it is impersonal, potentially isolating, cold, and can easily be misunderstood. When this is over and our "social distancing" requirements are a thing of the past, my hope is that technology and its use in communication will be scaled back. That people will have a renewed desire to get together, to attend their church and small group, to have dinner with their loved ones, and in general to make real, live, social interactions the best way to communicate.
Over the last month, we have been able to talk with our kids in Haiti online and even communicate with our employees over the phone...It is not the same.
I have seen my parents close on their old house and move out without being able to help them or see our old house.
We have tried to get involved in a church without being able to physically attend.
My 2 oldest children can no longer attend preschool but are doing some activities online from a couple of wonderful teachers.
Technology has saved us in a lot of ways. My hope is that when we do not need it to be as prevalent as it is right now, that we will take a step back and enjoy the good things about it while skipping over some of the negatives.