Connected 3D

Technology brings many benefits to our lives. But excessive screen time can create a flat, one-dimensional existence. We were made for the rich, three-dimensional experience of relationship with God and one another. So, while technology is great for some types of communication, it is no substitute for real-world, face-to-face connection.

Do you control your devices or are they starting to control you? How about your family? In a culture where everyone seems more “connected” than ever, how do we nurture real connection with the most important people in our lives?

Using Technology in a God-honoring way

This past weekend at FBCL we launched our Connected 3D Campaign.  The main focus of this campaign is for individuals and families to use technology in a God-honoring way. The three ways we propose are: Disconnect to connect, Deepen internal values, and Develop external boundaries. 

Connected3D Prayer:  Stop whatever you are doing right now to spend a few moments in prayer for yourself and your family using the following... 

·       DISCONNECT TO CONNECT:  “Lord, help me to recognize when to put my device away and connect with You and with those closest to me.”

·       DEEPEN INTERNAL VALUES:  “Lord, I choose to honor you with how I use all areas of technology.”

·       DEVELOP EXTERNAL BOUNDARIES:  “God I will not allow technology to be used in an unhealthy way by myself or my family. Help us to create some new boundaries in our home that are appropriate for our family.”

Over the next 4 weeks we will post updates with resources, tips and encouragement. We hope they will help you and your family to replace virtual connection with real connection to God and each other.

Going Further: 

Click HERE to connect with the Digital Kid’s Initiative, a Christian-based resource created by the Center for Parent/Youth Understanding.  Here you will find information and resources to help you and your family navigate the digital world.

Technology Guide for Parents

We are challenging FBC Lewisville families to use technology in a God-honoring way. It is difficult to do that if we do not understand the devices that are in our homes or the ones that our children desire. Therefore, we want to equip you with a guide that we have found that will help you in your understanding of devices before you purchase them and after you own them. Here you will find specific questions to ask as you go to purchase particular devices and quick printout sheets on specific devices and the info that you need to know about them.

We want you to have full understandings of how to make those devices as safe as possible for your home. It will take some work, but it is worth your time.

Click HERE for great tools for parents on the topic of technology and devices.

Application:

Browse through this guide and make a list of the 5 immediate things you desire to do in regards to the devices in your home. Over this next two weeks implement all 5 of those things that you identified.

Social Media Madness. Leverage it Well

Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, Pinterest, etc…Some of these giants are here to stay and others will come and go. Social media, through various routes, is not going away anytime soon. We do not need to fear these different avenues of technology connection, but we do need to understand them so that we can help deepen internal values and develop external boundaries for ourselves and our families.

There are lots of ways that social media can be used for good. We can publicly encourage our spouses, celebrate a child’s accomplishment, spiritually invest in a friend across the world, and even help link others to great resources for growth. Social media, and most other technology components, can be leveraged for good or for harm. Lets make sure we are informed and also make sure we know how to use these in a God-honoring way if they are going to be in our homes.

First, watch this funny video about social media HERE

Click HERE to visit The Source For Parents and search social media. There is very helpful information found here to educate and coach you with wise decisions in regards to social media in your home. There is also more great information and resources you will find here. 

Use Rightnowmedia.org to grow in the discipleship of your kids

Did you know that if you are a regular attender at FBC Lewisvillel you have free access to 10,000+ Bible Study Videos from over 150 leading Christian publishers and ministries?  Not only does Right now media contain great content for adults, it has excellent children's ministry content as well!  If you haven't had a chance to sign-up yet, click on this link to sign-up

Here are some great Resources on RightNowMedia:

Check out their marriage resources here.

Check out their parenting resources here.

Check out all of their kids videos here.

Recommended Resources:

It Starts at Home is a great resource that goes perfect with the Connected 3D campaign as it talks about how to make discipleship a priority in the home, both in your marriage and your parenting if you have children. 

The Art of Marriage Video Event  is a tremendous resource to watch with your spouse and the Art of Marriage Small Group Series is a great resources to watch with your small group.

You and Me Forever is a great video resource to pair with Francis Chan's new book on marriage.

Grace Based Parenting is an excellent resource for parents.  Feel free to check out part 2 and part 3as well.

Men, Check out this awesome resource called Stepping Up.  If you want to watch the video event, you can find it here.  If you want to watch it with a small group, check out the small group series here.

How to Protect My Children From the Dark Side of the Web

How have you responded? How are you going to respond? According to the stats, most of us will have to navigate through the reality of a child accessing pornographic images and/or videos on a device that we have brought to the home or given them access to. What are you going to do when that occurs?

Pornography is unfortunately easier to find and access than ever before and we need to protect those that we love.

Our friends at Covenant Eyes have provided a wonderful free resource that may be very helpful to you. It is called When Your Child Is Looking At Porn: A Step-by-Step Guide for Christian Parents and it can be found HERE

Application:

  1. Pray that God would protect your home from the harmful effects of porn.
  2. Read through the guide and prepare yourself for conversations that need to take place.
  3. If your child is mature enough, have some very intentional conversations about pornography and deeping internal values that will protect you.
  4. Check out Covenant Eyes accountability and filtering options here. Use the promo code CONNECTED for a free 30-day trial.

Going Further

Fightthenewdrug.org has great resources, including The Guideline: A Parent's Guide to Addressing Pornography with Children. Make sure you download it and read it in its entirety! You can find it here:

xxx.church.com also has great resources, including an accountability software program. You can find out more about that here.

Screen Free Ideas

We are calling FBC Lewisville families to prayerfully consider stepping up to the challenge to spend a screen free time. Will it be a challenge? You better believe it. Could it be very rewarding for your family? Absolutely.

We all need to detox from our devices at times and this is a great time to do that. Take the pledge and the plunge as a family. Get outside, play games together, create, read, get active.

For more on Screen Free Ideas and some helpful resources and ideas click HERE.

Family Tips for wisdom with technology

Have you ever asked yourself any of the following questions:

-How do I help my child with cyber-bullying?

-How should I evaluate websites and games?

-What is good online security?

-How should I monitor social media posts?

-check out these great family tips HERE listed by topic and age.

Application:

Keep this guide saved for when issues become relevant in the future. Use these tips to foster constructive conversation with the members of your family.

Video games, gamers, and guarding your family

Are you concerned with the amount of video games that are played by those in your home? The types of games played?  Who the games are played against? The purpose of the post this week is to provide your family with some helpful suggestions and guidelines with video games.

Not all games are cause of concern.  In fact, many families have learned to set healthy boundaries in regards to time spent on games and even found great ways to engage in playing games together. Focus On The Family provides some great tips concerning video games. Click HERE to see those suggestions.

Application:

Have good conversation with any gamer in your home. Make sure there are clear boundaries and that there is common agreement of how to disconnect from their gaming devices to connect in the real world.  This is a great time to evaluate your own habits as you are modeling those habits for others in your home.

Parenting The Internet Generation

Parents today who are raising children, pre-teens, and teens are facing a whole world of unique challenges that revolve around the Internet. As parents we are in the position to parent the Internet generation. Covenant Eyes, which provides online accountability and filtering, has created an incredible ebook called Parenting The Internet Generation.  This ebook is free for you to view and download. It wisely maps out for us 7 potential threats and 7 habits for Internet Safety. Click HERE  Covenant Eyes has also offered a free 30-day trial using the promo code CONNECTED. 

 Application:

 Have age appropriate conversations with your child about the issues mentioned in this ebook. You decide what conversations you believe they are ready for.