Research and Scolarship Symposium (convocation)

Walking into the BEC was a little overwhelming, because there were different stations around the room where students presented and explained their research. The board that caught my attention was done by a fellow Honors student and member of the lambda class, Solomon Spangler. His research project was titled “Cell Phones and Their Attentional Cost” and his thesis was the mere presence of a cell phone is distracting. The results of his study confirm his thesis.

Solomon’s research can be applied to topic of Christian vocation, because a Christian vocation, by my understanding, is any kind of work or action that benefits and/or serves another individual or group. By serving others, one is then giving service to God. Solomon’s research confirmed his thesis that cell phones are a distraction, and, if it is our calling as Christians to serve others, how can we do so if we are distracted by our phones and not paying attention to the world around us? We cannot, is my answer, for we are sinners by nature. However, with the power of the Holy Spirit the temptation of sin can be overcome, allowing us to serve others without getting distracted.

I allow my cell phone to be a distraction when it should not be, especially in church. Church is a time when my full attention is needed in order to fully appreciate and receive the gift of God’s grace. There is always something in the sermon that I need to hear, and if I am distracted by my phone, then I will miss the message. And so many times I have been walking down the street or a hallway while on my phone, completely blocking out the world around me. And because of Solomon’s study, I now wonder, what if I had not been on my phone? Would I have had an interaction when someone that would have given me the opportunity to share the love and grace of God with them? Actions as small as a smile can be an impact larger then we realize, and that is when we are serving others. I make it a habit to turn my phone off during church, so I do not miss the message and because of Solomon’s study, I will be more cautious about when I am on my phone and will make an effort not be on it as I walk down to the street or the hallway, so that my full attention will be on serving others.

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