“Come Here, I Want To See You”
By Brian Goins
When Alexander Graham Bell uttered the first words over a phone, “Mr. Watson, come here ... I want to see you,” I doubt he ever imagined that we would carry his creation around in our pockets. Ironically, the invention he designed to increase communication and decrease space between humans has now turned into one of the greatest sources of isolation.
When I got married, I envisioned a relationship that looked like the first four minutes of the Pixar movie Up.
Unfortunately, rather than loving my wife well, I’m far more like the dog from the same movie who constantly interrupts the conversation when he sees a squirrel. How many conversations with my wife do I have where I’m looking intently in her eyes, feel my phone vibrate in my pocket, and think, “Squirrel!”
Someone once defined love as focus. It’s not enough just to hear words coming out of someone’s mouth—real connection is truly seeing someone and understanding their heart. The psalmist says we have a God who has “searched me and known me! You know when I sit down and when I rise up; you discern my thoughts from afar” (Psalm 139:1-2).
God knows us because He pays attention to us. When we call, He listens. God never interrupts our prayers to like an Instagram post.
One of the greatest compliments you can give one another is your undivided attention. James, the half-brother of Jesus, wrote, “Let every person be quick to hear” (James 1:19). The more we wire our brain to be attuned to our spouse than to our attention-deficit-inducing devices, the stronger our connection is.
Do you ask our spouse on a regular basis, “Are you feeling noticed?” We focus on what we truly care about. If our spouse doesn’t feel like we are paying attention to them, marriage will drift toward isolation.
It may be time to put down the device and say to our spouse, “Honey, come here, I want to see you.”
The good stuff: Psalm 116:1-2: “I love the LORD, because he has heard my voice and my pleas for mercy . . . therefore I will call on him as long as I live.”
Action points: Try implementing a consistent technology Sabbath, whether for certain hours of the day or days of the week. Notice how your attention redirects itself on your spouse.
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