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Christian Living

Your Tech is Changing You


Quinton Cools January 11, 2020
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At TeenPact, we’re changing lives to change the world. It is no less true that technology is changing lives and changing the world. Think about it with me.

These are only a few categories. Think of the millions of ways that technology is changing lives. And it’s not just affecting others – it’s changing your life, too. The question is no longer if but how technology is changing you.

 

The Apostle Paul writes that we must “take every thought captive to obey Christ” (2 Cor. 10:5). Maybe you don’t think twice before reaching for your phone. Maybe you don’t realize how much of your time is spent on social media or video streaming. However, Paul’s words are as much for us today as they were for the Corinthians. We must think hard and think well. We must take every thought captive to obey Christ. So, here are three questions to help us do just that.

 

1. Who am I?

 

We must think theologically about technology. What do I mean by this? Humans were created by a personal, powerful God who made us in His image and likeness. He blessed us and commissioned us to be co-creators, to advance human flourishing through technology. Technology was God’s idea. If this a new concept for you, consider what is called the Cultural Mandate: “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth and subdue it; rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air and every creature that crawls upon the earth” (Genesis 1:2) God calls us and equips us to be fruitful and multiply, fill and subdue, and rule. The cities we inhabit often make the Garden of Eden feel distant and unrelatable. But it’s actually quite the opposite: God designed us to be designers. He developed us to be developers. He created us to be creators. 

 

Who are you? You are a human, bearing the image of your Creator, called and equipped to advance human flourishing for the glory of God.

(Source: Gen. 1:26-28).

 

2. HOW AM I CHANGING?

 

The tools in your hand shape the person you are becoming. Think about a shovel. Maybe you’ve used a shovel on a landscaping project or on a mission trip. You use the shovel to accomplish a task, to serve a greater purpose. As you use the shovel to shape the ground, so the shovel shapes you. What do I mean by this? Think about your hands. After a few minutes, your hands feel uncomfortable. After a day, they may feel raw. In less than a week’s time, you develop callouses. Your hands are more firm, rugged, and strong. From shoveling some dirt or playing your guitar to texting a friend or playing a video game, the tools in your hand shape the person you are becoming. 

 

The question is not whether or not you are being shaped but how. You must be intentional about who you are becoming. We must use technology as one uses workout equipment at a gym. We must be thoughtful, proactive, and purposeful. Ask yourself, who am I becoming?

 

3. WHAT SHOULD I DO?

 

We must aim for gospel-centered transformation. The Apostle Paul exhorts us in God’s Word: “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.” (Romans 12:2) How will we determine what is good and acceptable and perfect? By testing. We must be discerning. What does your search history say about how you try to satisfy your lust? How should you communicate with a friend you admire? Has your time spent on videos, games, or social media crowded out your spiritual disciplines? Are you easily distracted during class time or church gatherings when you get a text or notification?

 

Technology is something God intended for our flourishing and His glory. Instead of living in the good of this, we have functionally rejected God’s design and are now mindlessly shaped by the tech in our hands. We need help. To be transformed by the renewal of your mind requires a divine miracle. If you are a Christian, the Holy Spirit indwells you and promises to help you. Ask for help to be discerning about technology, and be transformed by the renewal of your mind.

 

Sources: Special thanks to John Dyer from Dallas Theological Seminary and Tony Reinke from DesiringGod.


Editor’s Note: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official views of TeenPact Leadership Schools. To learn more about our Vision & Values, please visit teenpact.com/vision-values/.

About the Author

Quinton Cools

Quinton Cools grew up in the Pacific Northwest, and like any true Oregonian, he can identify the perfect cup of coffee. Quinton’s love for… Read More