The Contemporary Millstone

Written and published on April 9, 2024

“I knew I had lost my my cellphone when I didn’t have the weight of it in my pocket,” said my Chaplain. 


Our cellphone is our contemporary millstone.

When I searched for millstone, I found this.  The first paragraph I read, “In various Biblical stories, millstones seem to symbolize civilization itself. In one threat to Jerusalem, Jeremiah reports that the Lord will bring Nebuchadnezzar, the king of Babylon, against them to “take from them the voice of mirth, and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom, and the voice of the bride, the sound of the millstones, and the light of the candle. And this whole land shall be a desolation, and an astonishment” (Jeremiah 25: 10-11). The millstones themselves symbolize prosperity (my emphasis) and the sound of comfortable living (my emphasis), for which they will pay.”

Isn’t the cellphone a symbol of our civilization?  YES!

Doesn’t a cellphone represent prosperity and comfortable living?  YES!

Then, for us Christians I cite one of the most recognized passages, “…but whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in Me to stumble and sin [by leading him away from My teaching], it would be better for him to have a heavy millstone [as large as one turned by a donkey] hung around his neck and to be drowned in the depth of the sea.” (Amplified Bible)

Doesn’t the cellphone lead the user (“little ones”) away from Jesus’s teaching often?  To the point where the cellphone user is hurt / abandoned / distracted?  YES!

Make The Adjustment NOW Or Continue To Be Hurt

When the automobile was invented, it did not have brakes.  It would coast to a stop.  Well, after people were getting into accidents and getting hurt, they needed to put on brakes.

When you and I are using the cellphone, YOU AND I NEED TO PUT ON BRAKES!!

Adults working with youth – YOU ARE THE BRAKES.  How can you (adults) allow children to continue to be hurt by the cellphone?

Currently, I am working at Charter School in Northern California with a STRICT NO CELLPHONE POLICY ON CAMPUS!  There is definitely a difference with those “scholars” and students on campuses that are too lenient about cellphone use.

If we don’t make the adjust to take cell phones off campuses that host minors, we will see the end of the United States of America as a “constitutional republic.” NOT HYPERBOLE.  How often have we heard chants in AMERICA, “Death To America?”  By all the access to anti-America rhetoric on the cellphone, it is culpable for the “Death to America” chant!

Take Off The Weight

I loved my Chaplain’s thought about not having the literal weight of the cellphone.  Yes.  He did panic a bit about losing his phone.

We need a “diet.”  Take off the “pounds” of stress / anxiety / depression / sleep deprivation /  “fomo” by leaving your phone in the car or at home!  Get it off your body!  See how liberating not having it is! When taking a walk, one thing I will do is carry weights with me.  After 15 minutes of walking, I am always surprised how heavy 10 pounds is!  To think I have lost 30 pounds and compare that loss to what a 10 pound weight feels like?!  Scary to KNOW what that added weight that I lost has done to my body.

Scary to know what all the time given to the cellphone has done to our soul / psyche!

My goodness!  You know the truth.  Well, many of you know the truth.  We feel “lighter” when we do not have cellphone.  THE FREEDOM ALONE IS AWESOME!  No one can get a hold of us.  We are beholden to no one when we don’t have the cellphone!

How to Lose The Weight

Don’t use your cellphone as an alarm clock!  Keep the cellphone in any room other than the bedroom.

Exchange the weight of the cellphone with the weight of a good book!  Read!

How about a journal?!  Write!

Our cellphone is our millstone and too many people (including me – from time-to-time) are drowning from the weight of it.

Just like a diet with food, start with small goals of taking out certain foods.  With the cellphone “diet,” start with small goals of no cellphone use for a certain amount of time while awake or during certain activities.  When going to have a meal in a restaurant, leave the phone in the car.  It will be okay.  Yes.  You may miss something at the moment.  And, of course, if you have some big health issue or “life issue” that is the exception.  But, when all is going well, add to that wellness by leaving the phone in the car!

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