I read a story the other day that Florida is having a tiny baby boom right now. It’s been traced directly to the hurricanes they had last year. One couple said that they were stuck at home with no power, and one thing led to another, and …
Now let’s think about that for a moment. A man and his wife made love _because the power was out_. What would they have done if the power had not been out? I don’t know, but I suspect they would have stayed up late doing housework, watching TV, playing on the computer, etc. Who knows if they would even have gotten in bed at the same time, or if one of them would have stayed up watching the Late Show? Or maybe they would have been so tired that they just fell asleep without any romance or intimacy. The lack of electricity kept them from those distractions, and something wonderful (both that night, and the resulting baby) came about instead.
I wonder how often ostensibly good things – like electricity – keeps us from enjoying the best things in life? How many more couples would be spending time in one another’s arms if not for TV, computers, and electric lights that take up their evenings?
The highway closest to my house has been closed for a few months for repairs. I could drive over to the next one, which is brand new, but that takes me several miles in the wrong direction to get to work. Plus, my clunky old car can barely keep up with the 70 mph speed limit, and my broken speedometer keeps me wondering anyway.
So instead of taking the new highway, I take some backroads and get to a little farm-to-market road that parallels the highways and comes in further south, closer to my work. It might add 5 minutes to my drive. The biggest problem is that I keep almost running off the road because the view is so nice. I’ll take pictures one of these days so you can see.
If I take a slightly longer route, I can add another 5 or 10 minutes to my drive, but I go by Willowood Ranch.
Willowood is relatively new, but that beautiful farm-to-market road isn’t. I never went that way before. Because after all, the highway was right there. Until the highway was closed, I never even knew of this way to get to work.
I am ashamed of the next example. When I was young, my parents almost never ran the air conditioner. Only if the nights were 80+ for more than 2 or 3 nights. We might have air conditioning a week or two per year, that was it. Otherwise, we opened all the windows, and started the box fans and ceiling fans going. I fell asleep most nights listening to the crickets and locusts. Sometimes I was literally woke up by a rooster crowing.
Yuppies that we are, my wife and I do not leave the windows open at night. This is partially for safety, but mostly because we are yuppies.
The other day, we had the windows open as I was putting the older 2 boys to bed. The crickets were chirping up a storm. My oldest asked me “Daddy, what is that noise?” _He didn’t recognize the sound crickets make_. Because we close the windows.
How many good things do we miss because we turn on the lights, we close the windows, we run the air conditioner?
I wonder, how often does God send a cool, refreshing breeze, which we miss, because we are inside with the windows closed and the a/c running? How much pleasure do we miss because our environment is regulated at precisely 76 degrees? How many wonderful times with friends have we missed, because we send them email or chat on the phone? What interactions with our neighbors do we miss because we are inside, or driving to and fro? How many times do we miss some little mom-and-pop restaurant because we drive through at McDonald’s?
I’m not suggesting that these forms of technology are entirely without merit. Electricity is good. Electronic devices are generally good. I’m a computer programmer, after all. Central heat and air is good. Highways are essential. It’s good to be able to stay in contact with others through the web, through email, and through phone calls. But they come with a cost, and we need to be aware of that cost.
As for me, even when the highway is reopened, I’m still taking the farm to market road.