DayBreaks for 11/07/17: Someone is Watching
From the DayBreaks archive, November 2007:
Syndicated New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman, a keen observer of world trends, devoted a recent column to the idea that technology has made everyone a potential paparazzo. Here’s his thinking in a nutshell: anyone we encounter could have a cell phone with a camera that could record our actions. If we’re rude or misbehave, we could end up on the offended party’s blog or MySpace website for the whole world to see. “We’re all public figures now,” concludes Friedman.
For support, Friedman cites the new book How by Dov Seidman. Its thesis: in this world of new and potentially revealing technology, how we live our lives and conduct our businesses has become far more significant than what we do. “We do not live in glass houses (houses have walls); we live on glass microscope slides…visible and exposed to all,” writes Seidman.
I think as children we were all intrigued with the concept of a glass house. We were too young then to think about all the downsides of such a living arrangement – we only thought about how cool it would be to be able to have 360 degrees of vision at all times.
You’ve seen his point proven on the news nearly every night – a hidden camera captures a thief robbing a convenience store, kidnapping someone, showing the shaking caused by an earthquake. If you look closely at the stop light poles in your town, you’ll notice lots of little cameras. Or in department stores, they hang from the ceiling in glassed-over little orbs. Whether you want to be or not, you’re constantly being watched. It can be a bit unnerving if you’re aware of it – and even if you aren’t, it can be unnerving afterwards when you think, “I probably was on camera when I was doing that.”
Long before video cameras were invented, long before the first human eyes were fashioned by the fingers of God, there was a God who sees. Hagar met this God in the wilderness as she fled from her mistress, Sarah. And knowing that He saw her in her distress and isolation, gave her the strength she needed to return once again to her mistress.
We should remember that the God who sees is greater than the camera that sees. We shouldn’t alter our actions and behavior to please the camera, but to please God. Why does God watch us? I think He probably watches us for the main reason that I spent so much time watching our children or grandchildren: I delighted in them and wanted to protect them. I certainly didn’t watch them mostly to catch them doing something wrong so I could punish them. I delighted in watching them. I’m convinced that God delights in watching His children, too, even though we will occasionally do things that cause Him grief.
PRAYER: Thank You that You are the God Who sees, and yet the God Who loves those He sees. May we be increasingly aware each day of Your eye upon us, and rather than resent it, come to love You for caring so much about us that we are never out of Your sight! In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Copyright by 2017 by Galen C. Dalrymple.