Has this ever happened to you? You’re sitting in church, using your phone to follow along with the Scripture passage. Your phone vibrates – or dings! – letting you know that your cousin Susie just posted a picture of the cinnamon roll she’s currently eating.
Or you get a phone call. Or someone just commented on last night’s Instagram photo. Or someone tweets the score of the game you’re recording (Lord have mercy!).
We have all had it happen. I know because I sat behind you in church last week. (wink, wink)
Not too long ago, I was sitting in the front row of a church, singing and preparing to walk up on stage in only a few minutes. As I glanced over, the person next to me was scrolling through their Facebook timeline. It was the lead pastor.
Yes…It happens to all of us. Facebook. Texts. Twitter. Pinterest. Instagram. Email.
Fortunately, there are two very simple tricks that will solve this problem once and for all. (Three if you include leaving your phone in the car during church.)
If you take 10 seconds (not kidding) as you’re walking into church these tricks will help you stay focused on what you came there to be focused on.
These tricks also work on any iPad or tablet as well. If you happen to use your phone or tablet for your personal Bible reading or study, you’ll want to do this at that time too.
The first trick is to use Airplane Mode and the second is called Do Not Disturb (iPhone) or Blocking Mode (Android).
I know it feels completely un-American to not be reachable or in-the-know at every second of every day. But it’s not. Truly. It can wait.
I highly recommend you go with Airplane Mode. It is the simplest way to disable calls, notifications, and texts so you can completely focus.
That said, I realize sometimes the Bible app on your phone requires an internet connection. (Many times it doesn’t by the way, since you can download most popular translations for free. I feel a separate post coming on…) In those cases, Trick 2 is the next best option.
I’ll walk through each trick for each platform, starting with the iPhone. If you use an Android or Windows Phone scroll down a few inches.
Airplane Mode for iPhone
- Swipe up from the bottom of the screen to access your quick settings.
- Tap the picture of the airplane.
NOTE: If you have an older iPhone that doesn’t have the “quick notifications” area, simply tap the “Settings” icon and Airplane Mode will be the first setting on the list.
Do Not Disturb for iPhone
You turn on Do Not Disturb in almost exactly same way. The only difference is, rather than tapping the picture of the airplane, tap the picture of the crescent moon.
NOTE: If you have a few “favorites” who need to be able to get in touch with you, you can easily set that up in “Settings.” Here Apple’s the step-by-step with pictures.
Airplane Mode for Android
There are two simple ways to turn on Airplane mode on your Android phone or tablet (see pictures below):
- Swipe down with two fingers from the top of the screen to access your quick settings. Tap the picture of the airplane.
- Hold the power button for two seconds and a quick menu will pop up. Tap “Airplane Mode.”
Blocking Mode for Android
You turn on Blocking Mode in almost exactly same way. The only difference is, rather than tapping the picture of the airplane, tap the picture of the circle with the horizontal line inside (upper right corner of picture above).
BTW…If you have a few people who need to be able to get in touch with you, you can easily set up your “Allowed Contacts” in “Settings.” Here’s a link to step-by-step instructions.
Give one of these tricks a try. Then open up your Bible and stay engaged.