"Isn't the water too cold?"
"I don't go to swim. I listen to the waves, breathe in the salty sea air, maybe wade a bit. I go to relax."
"They've got apps for that."
This was my conversation a few months ago with a man who was totally serious.
He couldn't imagine making the hour long drive to sit and soak in the sights and sounds we are blessed with, living near the coast. He thought his phone and an app were sufficient substitutes.
There is no man-made app that can capture the grainy feel of wet sand squishing between your toes.
Can an app fill your senses with the immensity and beauty of the horizon, stretched out under the expanse of sky, decorated with white, puffy clouds, or adorned with the pinks, reds, and purples of sunrises and sunsets?
An app doesn't let you look for the perfect color and shape shell to add to your collection, or snap a picture of something that catches your eye but needs to stay right where it is on the beach.
You might be able to hear canned whistles and clicks of dolphins, but wouldn't you rather hear them as they break the surface of the water in a fast swimming pack, delighting all who catch a glimpse?
And instead of playing app games, entertaining yourself watching the silly little sandpipers run down toward the water, then scurry up the beach as they hunt for sand crabs helps you realize that endless running back and forth doesn't have to be you today. You can rest.
I don't want to settle for something man-made when I can experience the fullness of something God-made.
Man-made things are a mere shadow of, a poor replacement for, something divine.
An app will let me hear, and perhaps see, a tiny portion of what there is to be seen and heard. But when I go directly to the source, I can immerse myself and my senses in the here and now of His creation.
Jesus said "I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full." (John 10:10)
He wants us to live for Him, all senses engaged. Our heart prepared to receive the blessings that abound when we are completely open to all He has for us.
My friend, what are you settling for today? What unfulfilling thing is serving as a poor substitute for the richness God has for you?
Don't be "app-athetic."