this is not about tv

been reading and thinking which for me is an increasingly dangerous combo.

in his attack upon christendom soren kierkegaard said:

what every religion in which there is any truth aims at and what christianity aims at decisively is a total transformation in a man to wrest from him through renunciation and self-denial all that and precisely that to which he immediately clings in which he immediately wants his life. this sort of religion as man understands it is not what he wants.

there are so many things in my life that i know are distracting me from relating to christ. so many things that draw my attention away and are utterly worthless diversions.

for example: i watch tv. mainly football but also a couple other shows. in all honesty i watch them for 2 basic reasons. to be entertained and to have something to talk about in conversations. what redeeming quality is there in the dallas cowboys or lost? better yet what kingdom good comes from my watching them?

so here is the part where i cancel my satellite service. but i dont. i keep it. and i keep watching. diverting. wasting time. is it wrong to watch tv? this question is nearly ironic in our culture where even people who claim to follow christ spend more time watching than praying or furthering the kingdom. and the implied answer in the eyes of the watchers is obvious – “dont be silly.” or “thats going too far.”

likewise – i dont want to be told i cant watch tv. or movies. or follow other diversions. but there is this gnawing in me that i may find 1000 better ways to spend my time.

and what about my wife and children? they watch shows every day but do they know christ? do they relate to him? am i being faithful with them? i dont want to be the hard husband and father who doesnt allow anything but i also want to be the husband and father whose wife and children know their christ.

this is way bigger than tv. it involves every aspect of how i spend my time. and thats the real problem. the time isnt mine to spend. its gods. he gave me life and an allotted time to live and i want to honor him with it.

but this means less of me. less entertainment. less diversion. and when im no longer diverted and entertained im afraid the reality of this broken world will crush me. and if it crushes me how will i carry the fire?

this shows my lack of faith. my lack of trust in god to be and do what he promised. ive convinced myself that im faithful and that i am one of the few who understands but i chase after all the same worldly garbage as everyone else. so am i a christ follower or merely a christ appreciator?

the answer turns me inside out and leaves my self-deception a corpse.

if im going to decrease ive got to get on with decreasing. i cant mindlessly hope it just happens. ive got to pray it and live it. bc until all i want for my life is only what christ wants for my life it will still be my life and thats nothing more than an entertaining diversion for anyone else.


~ by graceshaker on December 30, 2008.

5 Responses to “this is not about tv”

  1. I feel your struggle…I have been battling this same issue for the past couple of months, and I am not sure I have come to any conclusions yet, but I hear you man.

  2. Wow.
    Lots of thoughts rushing through my head. i will see if i can throw a dart a one or two.

    You know my background, and let me add that we did not have TV growing up….rarely were we allowed to watch movies; every once in a while at friends houses, or at the grandparents we saw old ones. I can say that because of this, it is possible that we did retain some sensitivity (as opposed to being desensitized at a young age, to violence, etc). OTOH, we still grew up with screwed up heads. LOL. kinda ironic. But as my dad would say, we are his responsibility so he had to raise us how he thought best. That is up for argument as well, because one can do the best they can, and still be wrong….however, at that point I would say it is in the Lords hands. I know I am rambling…I have had soo much on my mind lately!

    So, I know what you mean. Speaking for myself, I find that TV can be a welcome diversion after hours of intense study or pounding the keyboard…a bit of fluff to the brain to keep from going insane. Also speaking for myself, I can attest that the root is deeper; for even if I were to give up TV (an example since that is what this post is about) I would find something else to divert….books, magazines, hell…..even a nap! So perhaps the dilemma lies in defining or re-defining our sense of what is righteous? What is essential? Maybe a regular sabbatical to sort of re-focus. Or a fast. This is all me speaking though. One of the awesome things about Christ is that He can be found anywhere…or at least, hints of him. My friend just read the twilight series and was encouraged more in her faith by that than she has been otherwise, in a long time. (Haven’t read it myself; just going om what she said.)

    Personally I struggle with finding the right balance because like I said, you know my background where we were sheltered from anything “worldly” and yet I know my own struggles with depression, perfectionism, suicidal thoughts…and just lately do I find I am truly beginning to know WHO God is…and I was sequestered on a farm, schooled at home with very religious parental control. So LONGGGGGGG story short…I am finding that the key is BALANCE…although I suspect that in our individual journeys, we must ride the pendulum towards either side a few times before we settle down into our calling.

    Who knows…I ramble. God bless as you find your way in Him…and obey the convictions he has laid on your heart.

    What did the disciples do when jesus was around? I am sure they had a few sit-around-the-fire-telling-jokes episodes. Hehe. Maybe that was old-timey Comedy Central, without all the boobage.

  3. Double WOW! Your words touched my heart today! Soooo glad I found your blog

  4. So… do we climb up a post and wait for the second coming?

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