In preparation for Stake Conference next week (a large church meeting with people from Brampton right north to past Barrie), all the members of our church are participating in a media fast. The idea is that we may all spend this week free from the constant noise and distraction of media, trying to tune in spiritually each day. So all non-essential media goes off. The exceptions are for work, essential personal use, and some spiritual things.
To be honest, I don't think my daily activities will be all that affected. I don't watch TV and rarely watch a movie anymore. I don't like the noise of the radio on overtop of the noise my boys already make. I don't have a smart phone, and I never use my cell phone. I don't even talk on the phone more than I need to just to get my message across (my average phone call lasts less than 2 minutes!) I don't play video games or computer games. I only use the computer to do our budget a couple times a week, and check my email and my Facebook messages a couple of times a day.
So the only real changes I need to alter are these: I will not be following other people's blogs this week, and I will only check my email once a day, in the evening. I have decided to continue writing on my own blog, because even though I do use media for it, I consider this my journal, which is an item of personal growth and reflection.
What I am most excited about is James' Blackberry. He will only be turning it on during work hours (8am - 5pm.) I know I've ranted and raved about the Blackberry before, so I will relish every moment it is off this week.
What I am least excited about is not putting on a movie for the boys while I prepare dinner. That is going to be really difficult. So, in essence, the hardest part of this media fast is not my lack of media, but the lack of media for my children!
But because I don't really have to change much in the way of my daily life, I don't think that is really accomplishing what the goal of this experiment is. The idea of shutting out the media is to tune into spiritual things more often, to "be still" more often, to reflect more often. Those are things I rarely get to do, even in my mostly media-free life. So I plan to use this week to work on my memorization of John chapter 15, work on my hymn medley choir composition I have started, and spend some time pondering and praying each day. I am also just about to write my goals for this week, and in writing those down, I intend to include items that will help me realize the purpose of this fast.
(By the way - I did really well with my goals from last week! There was only one I didn't get to - painting more of the trim on the stairs.)