Thursday, May 17, 2007

Living Outside the Box

A few years ago, we were involved with a study for families who watched very little to no t.v. This week, we received a postcard telling us a book from that study has been published "Living Outside the Box: TV-Free Families Share Their Secrets." We won't be buying the book, but we did put it on our wish list on

It's more interesting to live YOUR life than to watch someone in "reality" or fictitious t.v. live theirs.

Some of our best lessons have come from the worst examples:

We once knew a bright, witty Christian girl who became so wrapped up in t.v. shows she had no life of her own. She became boring and dull. Her conversations revolved around the lives of the characters she watched. She could just about quote verbatim the lines of the shows and movies she feasted upon. She considered incredibly poor television and acting wonderful because she had no discernment. Her friendships fell apart. People dreaded having her visit because she'd sit in front of the tube like a zombie. Her morals steadily declined. Things she would have never thought to do didn't look so bad to her anymore. She compared events in her life to those of fictitious characters and looked to see how they solved them. She started mimicking their speech and habits and was proud enough to tell others where she picked up the slang and mannerisms. She started valuing the advice of worldly talk show hosts above God's Word. She became full of pride over her acquired "wisdom" and started passing judgement and heavy criticism on those around her.

She wondered why she couldn't find a godly mate. It was clear to everyone around her, but she couldn't see it even when it was pointed out: "You can't find a godly mate when you are in front of the tube for most of the day. A godly mate will be out serving and glorifying the Lord. He won't suddenly appear on the couch next to you! He's not going to enjoy shows that "make a mockery of sin" as fools do. (Proverbs 14:9)"

She rejected several sincere men who "got in the way" of her t.v. watching. These men longed for a godly woman to walk beside them and raise godly children, but t.v. came first with her. She was unwilling to make personal sacrifices of her time and interests to build a relationship. They didn't fit into her t.v. shaped image of how a "real" man should act. They quickly grew tired of her berating them to change to please her. She played the mind games she saw on t.v. but they didn't work out the same. Wisely, they quit pursuing her.

She likes the idea of a godly man and the blessings of a godly marriage, but is unwilling to put forth the effort to have one. A woman who cherishes godliness is not going to eagerly embrace worldliness.

At nearly 40, she's still single and involved in a sinful and abusive relationship which brings her more pain and frustration than anything else. Her parents, whom she lives with, love her dearly but are ashamed of her behavior. She has openly considered trapping the abusive man with pregnancy. Afterall, it worked out fairly well for the women on the talk shows!

Isaiah 5:20 "Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!"