Praying without My iPad


1 cup of red Kool-Aid + 1 toddler boy chewing the lid + 1 iPad in front of him = certain destruction for Mom’s prayer time - Memo to self: Expensive electronics are NOT for kids.

I should have seen it coming. I should have prevented it. I shouldn’t be surprised that it happened.

I thought there was hope after the rice routine and then leaving it sit a day or two…but guess what? IT WON’T TURN ON. And that means I’ve had to change my prayer routine…BIG TIME.

praying without ipad

I don’t think I fully appreciated just how critical my iPad was to me actually praying until now. When I first got it, I called it my iPad prayer book. Over the years, it has become my go-to tool for prayer.

And now? I’m floundering. I don’t want to turn on my laptop to access Divine Office, because then I’ll be open to the distractions of the interwebs. (I know myself.) Many of the apps I use on my iPad aren’t available any other way.

Sometimes it’s good to have something shake up your routine. I can’t help but think of a passage I read recently in Elizabeth Scalia’s new book, Strange Gods: Unmasking the Idols in Everyday Life:

And yet, in those rare moments when we find ourselves alone and the gadgetry silent, we feel we are at a loss. With nothing to distract us, we come face to face with a keening emptiness. The void we thought to fill with noise and superficial relationships and tinkery things presents itself to us in a resounding echo. Silence is then terrifying, but only because it lays bare our loneliness, our self-recrimination, and our doubts. Possessing nothing that is equal to those depths, we sense the need to distract ourselves and the cycle begins to churn again.

Have I been using my iPad as a distraction? Has this kind of prayer become an idol and a blockage to real relationship with God? Is it time for a change in my prayer routine?

I’m glad for the opportunity to explore this more deeply, even as annoyed and frustrated as I am to have the idol of my plans and preferred approach disrupted.

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Copyright 2013 AUTHOR


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  1. Ouch. I’m in pain just reading this. Prayers for a replacement solution immediately, but in the mean time I thing you’re making “lemonade” out of the situation!

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