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Look Up!

November 1, 2012

I was sitting still at a red light in the “left turn” lane. It was an obvious opportunity to grab my phone and respond to a text. I know – you’re judging me now! 🙂

I was sitting still and there was a car beside me in the other “left turn” lane. So I formulated what I thought was an airtight plan.

Plan: I’d “quickly” send my “necessary” text while monitoring through my peripheral vision the neighboring car. I’d know the arrow turned green when my neighboring car began moving. Fool proof plan right?

All of the sudden there were several vehicles honking and I looked up and saw a bright green arrow – turning yellow. Frustrated that my neighboring car hadn’t held up her end of my bargain I looked over to discover that she too was sending a text. She was relying on me. Oops!

We both accelerated quickly through the now yellow arrow but unfortunately everyone behind us had to wait through another red arrow.

I bet you’ve done that too. Maybe not exactly but something similar. There is a strong temptation to depend on horizontal relationship instead of looking up.

It often looks like this:

> Talking to others for advice but failing to ask for God’s advice through prayer

> Depending on strategy alone (I love being strategic so this hits home)

Horizontal dependency then leads to horizontal comparisons like this:

> Determining your own ministry success solely compared to other’s ministry

> Deciding your own success as a Dad solely by watching other people’s kids and comparing them to your own

> Deciding your own success as a husband solely by watching other couples interact and comparing their marriage to yours

> Comparing my own personal faith progress solely compared to others

Look up! Quit focusing on other imperfect people. They’re texting too.

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4 Comments
  1. Fantastic Mark! Not the texting mind you – but the reminder. 🙂

  2. Chuck Grace permalink

    Being an old fella with limited knowledge of these computerized phones makes me feel safer all the time. I don’t have a clue how to text while driving and plan to keep it that way. My problem is all the things I have seen happen to people while being so selfindulgent as to text while driving. I have seen people drive off the road into a ditch, run red lights, and blow though a cross walk with people barely being missed. Take your super phone (away from the car) and look up the app that will tell you the impact force of a four thousaund pound car at 40 miles an hour. Although your point is well made about following others, I would suggest you turn off the phone before getting in the car.

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