Alexa, How Do I Talk To God?

Posted by Scott Foster on

    The kids gave us an Amazon Echo for Christmas and it’s awesome! You know me—I’m a total geek, especially when it comes to gadgets and technology. This thing is just incredible!

     You can ask her almost anything.

     Alexa, what’s the weather?
     “Right now in Madison it’s 41 degrees with cloudy skies. Today (Wednesday) you can look for fog with a high of 43 degrees and a low of 33 degrees.”

     Alexa, who is the 33rd President of the United States?
     “The 33rd President of the United States was Harry S. Truman.”

     Alexa what is Trump gonna do as President?
     “It sounds like you’re asking about Donald Trump. The President-elect is looking past Friday’s inauguration to 2020. At a recent press event, Trump revealed his next campaign slogan saying—are you ready?—‘Keep American Great!’ He also requested to trademark his new slogan without an exclamation point.”

     And there you have it. A vision of the future according to Alexa.

      Alexa, tell the kids a story.
      Alexa, sing a song.
      She can play just about any song from anybody you can think of hearing, except she doesn’t know Little Feat which is a big problem for me. She can interface with your Kindle library. You can order stuff on Amazon.

      She’s pretty good with the SmartHouse tools and can control the lights in your house—the thermostat—the locks. I have been adding electrical plugs and switches. It’s a real hoot to drive by the house and turn the porch light on and off.

     I was over at the Fleming’s yesterday trying to help Scott get his Echo set up to control the TV. There’s a gizmo you can buy called “AnyMote” that does a pretty good job controlling the TV and cable box on and off from the iPhone app. But, Alexa gets a little confused when she tries to follow directions changing channels. We’re working on that.

     Sheena was over there and Alexa kept saying stuff like “I can’t find a button called ‘cable box’” when she had just asked us to name it that exact label. Finally, we were trying to get her to say that she couldn’t find her way out of a paper bag. No luck with that either. But it made Sheena laugh like crazy!

     Her laugh makes me laugh.

     It’s fun even if we still can’t get it to work perfectly. I sent off an email to get some help because, God forbid, there’s virtually no getting a real person on the phone any more anywhere. So, we’ll see how it goes.

     I know this: if they can get that figured out, it’s a game-changer for ALS patients. Scott can already ask Alexa for just about any information he wants and listen to his favorite radio station, WDHA. That’s just incredible. I mean, really. If we could only get it to scratch his back!

      But, her answer to the question about talking to God?
      “For help with what you can say, take a look at the “Things To Try” section in the Alexa app.”

       I haven’t bothered because I’m pretty sure it’s a dead end. And besides that—if the answer’s there, it pretty much puts me out of work! Right?

       The truth is: you don’t need Alexa or me or anybody to tell you how to talk to God. Just let it fly. Your words. One at a time. You can even be mad if you want! Feel free. God can take it, I promise.

     Especially this week, in this time, for our whole country—we need all the prayers we can give each other. Pray for Trump and the whole team. Pray for the Congress. Pray for your neighbor. Pray for yourself, too. It’s good for you.

     I’ll take all the prayers I can get!

     Alexa, can you write my sermon?
     “Sorry, I can’t find the answer to the question I heard.”
     Don’t worry Alexa, sometimes neither can I.

 Grace & Peace,

 Scott

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