Sunday Stillness – Convicted of a Bad Habit

Sunday Stillness – Convicted of a Bad Habit

REAL Magnet

Lately I have been convicted again of getting sidetracked from the real purpose of my life. You can check back to my other conviction story. This time the conviction came slowly. I had realized for a long time that social media had become a stealer of my time, energy and ability to write and paint. But I didn’t want to let it go. I felt I needed it to expand and get known.

I don’t feel that way anymore. God is showing me that life is more about REAL connections – through my blog – and writing personal notes to my commenters. And through my life – REAL life where I meet and get to know the people in my town on a more personal level.

I must get back to being R.E.A.L.

I wrote the acronym a long time ago.

R- Release
E- Everything to God
A- AndL- Live

You can download a PDF for Magnet – REAL – Janis Cox.

Habits – I have found social media has become a habit instead of a tool. The final thing that has driven me to cut off this habit happened the other day. I had an appointment at my Naturopath’s. He told me that WiFi could be a potential harm to my system. As soon as I heard that I resolved to stay off my IPad as much as possible. Instead I work at my computer which has a CAT5 plug directly into the wall.

I also try to spend more time outdoors, in my vegetable garden. I love playing in the soil.

As I read Oswald Chambers (Oswald Chambers – May 12), these were my thoughts about habits:

Habits – Make sure your spiritual habits are about getting closer to God and not just checking it off the list. Be ready to break or change a habit if God shows you it is just that – a habit – and not a way of getting closer to Him.

I think that can be taken about any habit, spiritual or not. If it is not life-edifying then I need to drop it.

Now I will have time for more writing, time with friends, time with my husband, and time for painting. I am excited to see where God will lead me with this extra time.


I must get back to being R.E.A.L. (click to tweet)


Janis is the author of the award winning children’s book, Tadeo Turtle, published by Word Alive Press. Available in Kindle Format, in bookstores, online and from her website. Curriculum available upon request. Janis also is a contributor to Hope Stream Radio. Join her on Tuesdays and Saturdays.


You can find her on Facebook, and Twitter. Tadeo has his own Facebook Page.






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  1. Hi Janis,

    Thanks for your invitation to link to Sunday Stillness. I echo your sentiments. I’m only minimally distracted by social media, but I can still identify with the need to get REAL, as there are ample other distractions in my life. I’m convinced I could make more of an effort to connect with God more regularly!

  2. I agree, Janis — time is so precious that we must be careful that our habits are edifying, and not just routine distractions. Love the acronym! I’ve had to cut down a lot on Facebook also because it’s just too time-consuming. Thanks for the great post and for hosting and God bless!

  3. Thank you for the invite to share my post on Finding Deep Relief from Toxic Emotions. Yes, we all have habits that need breaking. Staying up too late is one I am working on.

  4. Hi Janis

    I agree with you that social media can become a habit. It can also be a societal expectation. I heard on CBC radio that if you have no presence on social media, potential employers think you have something to hide. What a world we live in!

    I don’t blog as often as I did when I first started both my own blog over two years ago and also became a co-author about that time on Mind’s Seat. There is far more to life than social media. We have to have times to break free from it and enjoy the beauty of God’s creation or hear a child’s laughter.

    A fewe days ago there was a power outage in our small community of Ramore, northern Ontario. There was no internet. Not being able to go on facebook, Linkedin, my gmail and yahoo account and check on my blogs was a hardship that concerned me. I became convixted in my spirit that tge gremlin of technology was too much in my life. This fact was driven home by how relieved I was when the power came back on after 5:00 p.m. Alas, I could watch TV again and listen to music on our stereo system.

    I think it’s time for me to be truly be still, believe and know that God is at the centre of my life, not social media or technology.

    Thanks for reminding me and all of us of what is truly important in life.


    1. Kevin,
      So wonderful to see you here. Thanks for coming over. And I too know that I needed to be proactive in getting off social media. I set a specific time for it – and that’s it. I haven’t watched TV in about 6 years. Don’t miss it at all. Gardening, walking and being in the world God created is making me much healthier than before.

    1. Thanks Melanie,
      I believe we have to be who we are – no one else. As we grow in Jesus we can be that way to others we meet. And they will see Christ through us.

  5. A very good post about how social media robs us of time with others in real life. I’m curious as to why your naturopath thought working on the iPad was unhealthy?

    1. HI Janis,
      I know social media can be such a time puller.

      Re: WiFi

      My naturopath talked about the dangers of WiFi and that’s what an Ipad uses. Here is one article. They don’t know if it is safe or not. I just want to stay as “natural” as I can. Being on a CAT5 computer is not great but I think less a problem than on WiFi. Here is one article for you to read. There are many out there. And as with anything you need to look at all sides. But the powers that be said that thalidomide was safe too. Who knew?


    1. Tracy,
      I think we need to set a time aside for emails, and social media and then forget it. I am trying for morning and night. That’s it. I still put up my posts on the various media but as for interaction – no – just twice a day – and not for long. I would always say – “I wonder if someone has said something that I want to know.” YIKES way too many times checking it. I have no emails coming from social media. I don’t use a cell phone. So it will be a conscious effort just to check. I know that God will show me what is important and what is not.

  6. Janis, It feels a little like a tightrope sometimes, doesn’t it? The balancing of writing, posting, sharing, commenting and all of those other things that tug at you to be done… I feel like I’ve met some people through blogging who, if we lived closer, would certainly spend time together. Real friends, caring and full of encouragement. Some who need encouragement. I would like to spend more time with this community, too – I haven’t quite gotten the balance thing down yet. Your acronym is perfect. I think I’ll put it on a sticky note on my computer. (I’d like to hear more about the WiFi thing, too…) Have a wonderful week.

    1. Janet,
      Excellent picture. Balancing it all – And I found that it was taking away from my actual writing and painting. Not good. And I agree I love this community and that’s why I try hard to get back to each person who has taken the time to write a comment. I keep praying for God to show me what’s in His favour and what is not.

  7. I absolutely love today’s post. I’ve broken a number of bad habits concerning social media, given up other things in my life that don’t bring me closer to God and at the same time creates more time with family as well as working in the dirt in my flower garden where I tend to do alot of speaking to the Lord. It’s my peaceful place!
    Bless you Janis and have a wonderful Sunday!

    1. Cheryl,
      Good for you. I am still working on it but it is getting better. I like this one on one interaction much better. I feel like I am beginning to know my blog friends. Just finished weeding and picking strawberries.


  8. Brilliant. I have to watch how I spend my time as well. So many time stealers that yield nothing of eternal value. Always good to have an accountability check! Thanks, and Happy Sunday!

    1. Michele,
      Time stealers – yes that’s what they are when they don’t glorify Him. I gave up TV about 6 years ago. That really frees me up to do more of His Work. Thanks for your comment.

  9. Love the acronym you shared today. A very good reminder to think about our habits, and social media too. May we develop and keep only those habits which bring us closer to Him and bring Him glory. Thank you for reminding us all of what is most needed. Blessings!

  10. I love that acronym-Release Everything and Live. Good and simple words to live by…getting back to simplicity by releasing it all and simply living. I like that. I too love to play in the dirt, whether it’s in my garden or in the woods on the trail. I love sloshing through the mud, and the smell of pine, honeysuckle, decaying leaves and moss. I’d like to say that I wish I had more time, but it is simply a matter of how we choose to spend our time. I’ve learned to let a lot of things go (Releasing Everything…) that I enjoy doing in order to do what I love doing. Thanks for the gentle reminder.

    1. Mary,
      Thank you very much. That acronym came to me years ago when I worked with a group called Authentic Women of Faith. I just kept thinking of REAL – how can we be real before the Lord. Just came in from picking weeds, picking wild baby strawberries and my first 3 strawberries from my new plants. Hurrah! Yes we want to love what we do for sure. But we always need to put joy into everything we do – whether it is washing dishes, cooking, caring for others.

I love to connect with you.

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