Fri, 2016-07-22 11:30 News Staff
by Renae Brumbaugh
I now have a new job title to add to my resume. I am a Pokémon Trainer. My duties as trainer include searching for, capturing, and training various Pokémon, or Poke men as I like to call them. Though they’re not men . . . they’re actually little animals, and some of them are rather cute.
On day one, I caught Pidgey in my bedroom, resting on my easy chair. Day two, I apprehended Rattata sitting right in front of me at the movie theatre, enjoying Secret Lives of Pets. And on day three—and this is where it gets really good—I captured four of the creatures at the city park, where Superman drove me, so I could catch more Poke men.
The conversation went something like this:
Him: Wanna go do something?
Me: You could drive me around to catch Poke men.
Him: You’re kidding, right?
Me: Why would I kid about that?
Him: I’ll drive, as long as there’s a trip to Dairy Queen involved. You’re paying.
So we drove around the city park looking for the little creatures. Superman is a great driver, but he’s not a very good Pokémon warrior. I think they scare him.
Each time I asked him to get out of the car and help me, he refused. Then he pulled his hat down further on his head, adjusted his sunglasses, and slunk a little lower in the seat.
It’s okay, though. He’s an excellent driver, and not everyone can be as ruggedly adept at capturing and training wild, exotic creatures as I am. It’s a gift.
You may have heard about the scores of people who are getting hurt, playing Pokémon Go. Apparently they get so absorbed in finding the little animals on their camera screens, they forget to watch where they’re headed in real life. I’m happy to say, I haven’t been hurt once.
This morning, a Google search brought up a whopping list of people who’ve crashed on their skateboards, tripped over cinderblocks, fallen into ravines, and even one who was bitten by a snake after he stepped on it. The game, which was designed to get people up and moving, isn’t without its pitfalls. Or just, falls. Apparently, we humans are so easily distracted by cute animations on our phones, we forget to pay attention to the real world.
I think I’ll rename my little phone game. Instead of Pokémon Go, I’m going to call it Pokémon god. It’s a good reminder to me. Because truly, any time we pay more attention to something trivial and temporary than to the eternal, that thing has become a god.
Oh, most gods aren’t as obvious—or as cute—as little pocket monsters. But they’re a lot more real. They might look like money or status or power or fame. They might come in the form of worry and fear. They might even show up, dressed as ambition and hard work, at the expense of relationships.
But any time we focus our attention on fleeting things, rather than on the everlasting, we’ve got our priorities out of whack, and we’ll trip and fall. People will end up getting hurt.
So I’ll keep playing my silly little game, be-cause it’s fun, and it makes me laugh. Then I’ll put it away and enjoy a milk-shake with my husband, who puts up with my goofy quirks. I’ll remind myself that many things that pop up in my path, demanding my attention are temporary distractions, designed to steal my devotion from what’s real, and lasting, and permanent.
And I’ll set my sites on the one, true, big-G God, my trainer and coach, who helps me fight of every creature that might bring me harm. He always leads me safely toward the bigger picture: loving other in-the-flesh people, and loving Him with all my heart.
“I want you to do whatever will help you serve the Lord best, with as few distractions as possible,” 1 Corinthians 7:35.