Salve for Souls

Friday, May 8, 2015


My husband could do amazing things with his smart phone: send and receive e-mail, go on facebook, check the weather, watch TV and so much more. He had the world at his fingertips and it made my little flip phone seem like yesterday's leftovers.

Before long, I was the proud owner of a brand new smart phone—and I learned how to turn it on!

The first place I brought it was to a women's retreat at my church, where I would be helping out. Before the retreat began, our group of about 20 gathered in a room for prayer. I was early and as the others straggled in, a friend said she needed to get her phone from her car to call her son.

I whipped out my prize possession. "You can use my phone."

She thanked me, took it and then stared at the blank screen. I quickly realized my friend knew no more about smart phones than me.

Drawing on my vast technical skills, I turned it on and some apps magically appeared.

Amazingly, there was one with a telephone receiver.

I pressed it. Nothing. I pressed it again. Still nothing. My friend pressed it too, with the same result. We must have pressed that thing a hundred times. Then viola! The screen changed and another phone app appeared. We pressed that one too, again and again. Eventually something clicked and a dial pad showed up.

Between the two of us, we managed to punch in the number and the call went through. But all our efforts were to no avail. My friend's son never answered because he didn't recognize my number on his caller I.D. He only answered when my friend went back to plan "A." She got her old-fashioned flip phone from her car and made the call.

My smart phone gave me more grief at the end of the day when I tried calling my husband to pick me up and take me home. When all attempts to call him failed, I decided to find a wall phone in the church. Yes, we still have a couple of these "dinosaurs."

As I made my way to one in the front office, another complication arose. At night, the halls were dark. Although light switches were on the wall, I didn't want to touch them, because one might set off a blasting alarm. Like most of life's lessons, I learned this one the hard way. Enough said.

At last, I groped my way to the phone, where I could barely make out the numbers. After they more or less came into focus, I couldn't get an outside line. Finally, I heard the welcome sound of a dial tone and was able to call home.

I have since learned how to better use my smart phone and I am taking life one app at a time.

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