My wife bought me an iPad for Christmas. She also bought me a companion book to help me out with my new Christmas present: "iPad for Dummies."
I have taken to the iPad pretty easily, although I am one of the least tech savvy fellows out there. I haven't had to open the Dummies book yet either.
I have said for the longest time that I didn't want any high tech gadgets. My computer and my plain and simple cell phone are as high tech as I wanted to get. No smart phone for me. A dumb phone is good enough.
Then I started seeing the iPad appearing everywhere on TV. On police procedural dramas the cops were carrying them around, and TV doctors were using them, talk show hosts were talking about them, and I was listening. Product placement works.
I stopped by a ministry in Murfreesboro one day to see a friend of mine. I serve on the board of directors of this ministry. When I got there, my friend, Erik Hines, was teaching a Bible class and he was using an iPad to teach from. His lesson notes were right there on this hand-held computer.
He told me all about the virtues of this technological marvel that has been capturing the attention of the world.
The pre-Christmas ads on TV for iPads were intriguing to me and one day it finally happened. I looked at my wife and said, "You know what I want for Christmas?"
So, this low tech, non-computer geek, excitedly opened his Christmas present and found himself the proud owner of an iPad. My wife, sweet woman that she is, spent her hard earned money and bought her loving husband the gift he was asking for.
When I held it in my hands for the first time I had no idea what to do with it. I couldn't figure out how to turn it on. There wasn't an owner's manual or a set of directions that came with it. I couldn't believe that this company packaged this amazing product without some form of instructions for a simpleton like me.
I was suddenly afraid of this thing that was there in my hands. What do I do with it? How do I make it work? It looked so cool on TV, and now I had one and I had no clue what I was going to do with it.
There were just a few buttons on the sides and one on the bottom of the screen, so I started pushing buttons. To my amazement one of those buttons turned the thing on. The screen soon came to life, and the rest is history, as they say.
One of the first things I did was download some Bible programs, a Merriam Webster Dictionary, and a Spider Solitaire game. I was up and running.
I have downloaded several books for me to read and some games for my granddaughters. And I have been enjoying my Christmas present.
Last night, my oldest granddaughter, Charli, spent the night with us. She looked up at me with those beautiful pleading eyes and asked, "Papa, can I play with your iThing?"
So Charli and I played with my iThing. We sat together in my recliner and played a delightful game called "Bugs and Buttons." We counted buttons, we sorted them by colors, and we squashed bugs, and shot bees from a slingshot at flowers.
It was so nice to spend that time with this wonderful little girl. We both enjoyed the wonders of that little high tech gadget that I said I would never own.
I like my Christmas present. Maybe someday I will even preach a sermon from the notes I learn to put on there.
Thanks, Lynn, for buying me my very own iThing.
-- Doug Dezotell is the pastor of Mt. Lebanon UMC and Cannon UMC. He is a former staff writer for the Times-Gazette, and he is a husband, a father, a grandfather, and a friend to many. He can be contacted at email@example.com.