Friday, 20 May 2011


My iPhone is amazing. Or is it?

I've just reached the end of a 2 year contract (that's the only way I could afford it – which says something about my attitude when I got it), and I'm glad to say I won't be upgrading to an iPhone 4 or any other smart phone for that matter. I've gone back to basics. I got a Nokia on O2 Simplicity. It's vastly cheaper and I've opted against having any data bolt-ons so I can't download anything – no games, no apps, no emails. Nothing. Just simple phone, camera, text.

It feels great.

A recent BBC article talked about Apple and other superbrands provoking reactions in the same areas of the brain as religious imagery does for those of faith. It would appear that Apple have led a lot of us in worship, and for me it's time to repent of naively following and to prise myself from the clutches of the Mac Monster.

After all, the joy that possessing a piece of Apple hardware brings is nothing compared to the joy of spending time with our Maker and Sustainer. It's nothing but a very cheap, albeit monetarily expensive, imitation.

When I bought into the contract I bought into the lie that my life would become more interesting, happier and easier. I might look sharp on the outside with my beautiful accessory, but on the inside it's blunted me. For all the extra information and knowledge at my fingertips, I feel like I know less – I certainly don't know God as well as I used to. It's far too easy to spend that spare 10 minutes playing Angry Birds or looking for apps that will 'improve' my life rather than praying – and if I was more keen to play than pray, surely that means I loved my iPhone more than I love Jesus! (Makes you feel sick doesn't it?) Too easy to be more consumed with a piece of plastic, glass and metal, than to talk with the flesh and bone people made in the image of God who are in the same room as you. (Apologies to you if I was ever so rude as to appear to be more interested in my iPhone than in you – how utterly ludicrous).

I think I realised in the last 5-6 months of my contract that so much of Apple is about the visual. It's so much about image. It does look pretty cool to put an iPhone down next to your MacBook. But to me, it seemed that the more time I spent with it, the less it offered in reality. Much like a golden calf, giving the appearance of value on the outside, but inanimate, dead and lifeless. Your iPhone isn't going to save you. It could kill you though.

I'm sure if Moses had come down from Mount Sinai and found me with my iPhone he would have gone berserk.

Some of you might disagree with me completely. You might feel that a smart phone has changed your life for the better, and you might have more self-control than I do. Remember though, it is only a cheap, earthly imitation of how God can change your life eternally. Don't let it blunt you like it did me. And whatever you do, don't let an inanimate Apple lead you in worship. Give yourself to the living God.

I'm not really into conspiracy theories, but what's even more terrifying is the logo. Fruit with a chunk missing. Promising the consumer knowledge. Familiar? ;o)


  1. you certainly make some interesting points, and I'm not going to disagree with you. However, I will point out some of the positives that I have found in my spiritual life:

    - access to great teaching via podcast
    We now live in such an interconnected world that by Sunday evening hours of quality biblical teaching is at our fingertips. I spend a lot of time travelling, and yes, I can use the time to pray, but I also listen to a lot of podcast, especially from churches that I used to be a part of, and as such I still feel connected. The same sort of thing goes for following people on Twitter I guess.

    - access to my bible at any time
    At work, I'm not in the position to carry a bible around with me at all times, but I am able to take my phone with me, and within seconds I'm able to get into the Word. Same goes for easy access to worship music: I won't always have my ipod on me, but I will have my phone

    - organisation
    using google calendar on my iphone means that I've been able to keep track of my life, where I'm supposed to be and what I'm doing. Has helped me make sure I don't double book worship practice etc. Also, linking it to Liz' account means that we don't get diary clashes

  2. You're absolutely right. There are loads of pros to it. I think I'd got to a stage where I was too familiar with it. To quote Ben Parker (Peter Parker's uncle in Spiderman), 'With great power comes great responsibility'. I think if you can be self-controlled with it, then amazing, but if otherwise it needs to be cut off.