12 Ways Your Phone Is Changing You
- Product Review (submitted on September 6, 2017):
I picked up the 12 Ways Your Phone Is Changing You audiobook, because like many of you, I feel like I often check my phone too much. I thought this book would give me a good little kick to break some bad habits, but I got so much more than I was expecting!
This book goes over different ways smartphones, and technology in general, has changed us not only individually but as a culture. The author incorporates different statistics and studies, and then takes a deeper look at the spiritual impact of our phone choices. He doesn't tell you what you need to do with your own smartphone habits, he just neutrally gets you thinking.
There were two specific things in this book that really stuck with me. First, the author wrote that checking your phone or texting while driving (disclaimer: which I obviously try NOT to do unless changing my music - which maybe I should be careful about too) is a disregard for your neighbor - the neighbor who is in the car whizzing past you. You are not caring for your neighbor as you should, and as Scripture calls us to do, when you flippantly put them at risk like that. I had honestly never even thought about the whole don't-text-while-driving thing like that and thought he made some really good points.
The other item that I remembered with this book, and that will honestly change some of how I handle social media is that we so often trade eternal reward for a few temporal "likes" on social media. The example he used was those posts on Instagram with a picture of your Bible as you finish up your devotional time. Any heavenly reward we may have received from spending time with our Savior is instantly traded for pats on the back by other people on Instagram. This is supported by Matthew 6:1
“Be careful not to practice your righteousness in front of others to be seen by them. If you do, you will have no reward from your Father in heaven."
How sad is that? And once again, I never thought about it before, but I have been guilty too of trading eternal rewards for "likes" - guilty of caring more about men's applause than pleasing God. Now whenever I see those Bible posts, or those "humble brag" posts, I cringe a little more than I used to. Since listening to that chapter of this book, I've been trying to refrain from trading eternal rewards like that myself. It's a bad trade.
There were so many other excellent points in this book, I'll honestly probably listen to it again. I even thought about buying the print version so I could highlight some of the pieces that I like.
If you are like me and feel that little itch for an eternal perspective on your smartphone use, definitely check this book out! It's given me a lot to think about and has already motivated me to change some of my habits, and I highly recommend it.
Note: I received the audio of this book for free from christianaudio in exchange for a review. This is my honest opinion.