The Big Screen vs. Small Screens: Cinemas and Cell Phones

by Johannah Miesner

During a recent trip to the movie theater, I settled into my comfortable seat, ready for the film to begin. I breathed a sigh of contentment as the lights dimmed, the previews started, the smell of popcorn wafted to my nostrils…and the texting began. “Wait!” I thought to myself. “Why do small bluish cell phones seem to rival the big screen for the main source of light in this theater? Am I the only one in this theater that, after paying eight dollars for my ticket, actually wants to watch the movie!?!”

While I say this with a lighthearted attitude, I genuinely was surprised at the amount of people, mainly teens, in the theater who felt the need to text throughout the majority of the movie. Whom they were texting, I was unsure. They could have been texting significant others, parents who were wondering when to pick them up, or their friends at the other end of the aisle to find out what they thought of Alexis Bledel’s outfit in the most recent scene in the movie. After leaving the theater, I continued to ponder why the people who were texting could not wait two hours until the movie was over to resume their lives. Isn’t the point of a movie to “get away from it all?”

I have to admit that I am just as guilty of being attached to my cell phone as anyone else. I turn my cell phone back on as soon as I possibly can after being asked to turn it off. I check my email immediately after sitting down at my computer. I call my voice mail, even if my cell phone says that I have no messages. My need to be connected with my network of family and friends overrides many things in my life. However, how many things are missed when our eyes are glued to our cell phones?

Even our relationship with God can be that way. We are so focused on the small things in front of us that we lose sight of the big picture. We worry about our finances, where our future is headed, or what people think of us. In our narrowed vision, only tuned in to the small bluish screen of our lives, we panic at the possibility that we might lose contact with anyone for even a small moment. We worry that we would miss some all-important news, or that we would never be able to regain that moment lost.

God does not think of us in this way. His perspective is much bigger than what is right in front of Him. The Lord knows all. Yet even with knowing every single distraction of our lives, He can focus on what is important—our sin and need for Him— and say that we are forgiven. (And when He says it, it is so!) Even when we fear that our batteries have died, or we don’t have “enough bars,” He brings us back to Him, restoring the bad connection between us. Through His cell phone tower of the cross, He has granted us the promise of eternal life in heaven, a life that will not only last through our current cell phone plan.

How blessed we are that God will never text back to us when we talk to Him, “lol, l8r.” Quite the opposite! He declares: gns4u, as He delivers His sincere and saving Text through the mouths of His pastors, and gives His Body and Blood. “gns4u?” “Given and shed for you!”

Johannah Miesner teaches the 7th and 8th grades at Saint John’s Lutheran School in Lanesville, Indiana. A native of Perry County, Missouri, Johannah is a graduate of Concordia University – Nebraska.


Created: August 27th, 2008