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The Kitchen Table #17: Are There Ways to Follow Christ on a Smart Phone?

The Kitchen Table is a weekly discussion between Shine.FM’s Ministry Director Brian McIntyre and his 18 year-old son Jake. In this episode, the duo look at the benefits and pitfalls of technology on faith. Plus, in Music Matters a look at:  Avril Lavigne–Head Above Water, Housefires–Jesus, What a Savior,  Corey Asbury–Reckless, and a classic from First Call–Sweet Love.  Finally, in Culture Shock, the pair break down the nuances of parenting in the digital world. Follow along on The Kitchen Table Facebook Group on the Shine.FM Facebook page.

Never Miss a Radio Show!

We’re now uploading our show the day after it airs. You can subscribe here (on iTunes), or if you don’t use iTunes, via the Stitcher app.

Yesterday’s show:
Brant is a “Loon”, The People Jesus Repelled, Parmesan Cheese Dinner, Grace, Nik Wallenda, Forgetting the Candy, Our Show Agenda, No Pets Scrutiny, Awkward Jog of Gratitude, What’s in a Person’s Heart

Sherri’s Fave Quotes:

“You’ll hear us talk about grace a lot because it’s the only thing that changes any of us.”

“I’m ok with looking dumb if I can just love people for once. I’ve gotten that frustrated with it. It’s time to grow up and love people.”

“People get judgmental about me having a bowl of Parmesan cheese for dinner. That hurts.”

“Grown man hiding behind a couch to avoid some kid in a Superman outfit. That’s how I roll.”

https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/brant-sherri-podcast/id903615429?mt=2

New Research on the Impact of Social Media

Some new research is out on the impact of social media on our lives—and it’s not exactly good news.

According to a story on Pluggedin.com, researchers observed groups of middle school, high school and college students as they were studying.  Within two minutes, many of them were texting, tweeting, surfing the Web, watching TV or updating their Facebook page.

In fact after 15 minutes, the scientists found that students had spent just 65% of their time, actually studying.

Meanwhile, according to the folks at learnstuff.com, six out of 10 employees visit social media sites such as Facebook or Twitter while on the clock.

And we’re interrupted, on average, once every 10.5 minutes by instant messages, Facebook messages and tweets.

After those interruptions, it takes an average of 23 minutes to get back on task.

By the way, Relevant Magazine recently featured an insightful article by blogger Shauna Niequist.  Commenting on the impact of social networking, Shauna says:

Everyone’s life looks better on the Internet than it does in real life. The Internet is partial truths—we get to decide what people see and what they don’t.

[But] community—the rich kind, the transforming kind, the valuable and difficult kind—doesn’t happen in partial truths and well-edited photo collections on Instagram.

Community happens when we hear each other’s actual voices, when we enter one another’s actual homes, with actual messes, around actual tables telling stories that ramble on beyond 140 pithy characters.”

To read the entire article, go to RelevantMagazine.com and enter “Instagram” in the search engine.

I’m Bill Maier for Shine.FM.

Listen to today’s audio here.

The Impact of Mobile Technology on Teens and Young Adults

What impact is mobile technology having on teens and young adults?

According to a new study from Kent State University, the more time college students spend talking, texting, Facebooking or surfing the Internet on their smartphones, the more likely they are to be anxious, unhappy and get lower grades.

Plugged In.com reports on the research, in which students kept a record of their mobile phone use.  They also took psychological tests designed to measure anxiety and life satisfaction.

Andrew Lepp, the co-author of the study says “The lower frequency users use their phone to keep in touch, check the Web and update Facebook but they can put it away and get on with other tasks.”

“But the higher users are not able to control it and are glued to the cellphone. They need to unplug and find some personal time where they can disconnect from the network.”

Dr. Lepp says we all need time to be alone with our thought and recover from the daily stresses of life in a way that doesn’t involve electronic media.

Meanwhile, some teenagers are sleeping with their cellphones—and sending texts during the night without any memory of it the next morning.

Dr. Gerald Rosen, who leads the pediatric sleep disorders program at Children’s Hospitals of Minnesota, believes teens are being conditioned to respond to their phones almost like a mother responds to her baby.

He says “If you’re a mother, you awaken to the sound of your child crying.  Even if it’s not a loud noise, it will trigger an awakening. That’s essentially what’s happening with lots of kids with their phones.”

Dr. Rosen also believes there are deeper problems to explore when anyone is so attached to a piece of technology that they have to sleep with it.

I’m Bill Maier for Shine.FM.

Listen to today’s audio here.

Could Your Teen Be Using The Drug Ecstasy?

Could your teen be using the drug Ecstasy?

According to a new report, the number of U.S. teens who wind up in the emergency room after taking the club drug Ecstasy has more than doubled in recent years.

HealthDay.com is reporting that drug abuse experts are very concerned about the huge increase in kids taken to hospital ER’s after taking MDMA— known as Ecstasy in pill form and “Molly” in the newer powder form.

Steve Pasierb, president of The Partnership at Drugfree.org, says “This should be a wake-up call to everyone, but the problem is much bigger than what the data show. “These are only the cases that roll into the emergency rooms. It’s just the tip of the iceberg.”

In the past year there have been a string of Ecstasy-related deaths in different parts of the country.  Organizers closed the Electric Zoo music festival in New York City in August following two deaths and four hospitalizations caused by Ecstasy overdoses.

The deaths came a week after another young man died from Ecstasy overdose at a rock show in Boston.

Ecstasy produces feelings of increased energy and euphoria, and can distort a person’s senses and perception of time. It works by altering the brain’s chemistry.

The drug can cause potentially harmful physical reactions.  Users can become dangerously overheated and experience rapid heartbeat, increased blood pressure and dehydration, all of which can lead to kidney or heart failure.

Alcohol also appears to be a factor, as one-third of the emergency room visits involving Ecstasy also involved alcohol.

If you’re a parent, I’d encourage you to learn more about this health danger by going to DrugFree.org.

I’m Bill Maier for Shine.FM.

Listen to today’s audio here.

Lisa’s Home School: E-Readers

Lisa shares some interesting information on how E-Readers help people with specific reading disabilities. Listen here:

Lisa’s Home School: E-Readers

Lisa’s Home School: Gadgets to Protect Car

Want to be extra cautious for your car this season? Lisa has gadgets that can help. Listen here!

 

Lisa’s Home School: Gadgets to Protect Car

Teen Texting Risks

Here’s another reason to put the brakes on teens texting while driving. It’s well known that texting behind the wheel greatly increases the risk of accidents, but what else may be happening?

Research links teens who regularly text while driving to other risky behaviors behind the wheel, including not using seatbelts and drinking and driving. One risk often leads to another.

This is nothing to “lol” about. Talk to your teen about texting while driving, strive to build a strong, close relationship, and lead by example. If you drive and text, don’t obey speed limits or practice other risky behaviors, why shouldn’t they?

If you have a comment or question for the New Shine.FM wellness expert Dr. Walt Larimore, visit the wellness expert page at Shine.FM.

Listen to today’s audio here.

Are Digital Devices Contributing To The Rise In ADHD?

Could ADHD be linked to smartphones?

About 6 million children in the United States—or about one out of every 10—have been diagnosed with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder.   Now, experts wonder whether the mobile devices we carry around might have something to do with that number.

According to a story on PluggedIn.com, research done by the Kaiser Family Foundation has found that ADHD numbers began to surge just as smartphones hit the market.

And because kids engage with digital screens so much differently than they do with real-life activities, some experts believe all that screen time may negatively impact their ability to focus.

By the way, the amount of time people spend engaged in all forms of media has now risen to 11 hours, 52 minutes per day.  Clark Fredricksen, vice president of eMarketer says “It’s clear that time spent with media is still increasing as a result of multitasking.”

In other youth culture news, some disturbing new stats are out on dating violence. A nationwide survey on the issue was presented at a recent American Psychological Association conference.

The survey included more than 1,000 teens, and it found that 41% of girls and 37% of boys say they’ve been physically, emotionally or sexually abused on a date.

Here’s one surprising fact that reflects how our culture has been pushing girls to be more aggressive: more girls than boys said they had abused a dating partner.  35% of girls said they’d been abusive―compared to 29% of boys.

By the way, if your son or daughter has experienced this kind of abuse,  I’d encourage you to contact my friends at Focus on the Family.  They operate a free telephone counseling service and can refer your family to a licensed Christian therapist in your area.  The number is 1-800-A-FAMILY.

I’m Bill Maier for Shine.FM.

Listen to today’s audio here.

Facebook Users—Is Your Brain In The “Machine Zone?”

According to a story on PluggedIn.com, Facebook, Twitter and other social media users can spend hours scrolling through newsfeeds or flipping through friends’ pictures. And some experts believe that these users may fall into a mental state similar to those who play slot machines.

It’s called the “machine zone,” where the very repetition of the spinning disks soothes gamblers.

Atlantic columnist Alex Madrigal says “The machine zone is anti-social, and it’s characterized by a lack of human connection. You might be looking at people when you look through photos, but your interactions with their digital presences are mechanical, repetitive, and reinforced by computerized feedback.”

Here’s another interesting item on social networking.  As you may have heard, several studies have shown that Facebook can undermine people’s happiness because of the way it showcases other people’s idealized lives.

But some experts believe that Instagram—with it’s almost exclusive focus on pictures—may be even more damaging.

Cataline Toma, with the Communications Department at the University of Wisconsin says: “You spend so much time creating flattering, idealized images of yourself, sorting through hundreds of images for that one perfect picture, but you don’t necessarily grasp that everybody else is spending a lot of time doing the same thing,”

And Hanna Krasnova, of Humboldt University in Berlin, adds, “You get more explicit and implicit cues of people being happy, rich and successful from a photo than from a status update. A photo can very powerfully provoke immediate social comparison, and that can trigger feelings of inferiority.”

As I’ve mentioned before, the Bible has a different perspective.  It reminds us that “man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.” (1 Samuel 16:7).

I’m Bill Maier for Shine.FM.

Listen to today’s audio here.