Posted by: zephaniah317 | August 8, 2008

Nourishment vs. “Acceptable”

Haven’t posted for a while.  Mainly because I’ve been pretty busy this summer, with two golf leagues, golf tournaments, paintball, the band, worship at church, business trips, you name it.  And I realize I’m complaining about recreational activities, but they still take time.  I’m very tired lately.

And, contrary to my previous beliefs (concerning downtime), I’ve spent too much time watching TV.  And, even with the limited cable access I have (I miss my ESPN!), I have found myself again using TV for an escape from issues that God is trying to get to in my heart, and also watching some racy scenes on TV.  No porn or anything, but risque nevertheless.

Which led me to ask a question:  What is “acceptable” viewing for a man when it comes to TV and movies?  I realize, after a long period of growth that God has brought me through, that to a large extent, it’s not WHAT you watch, as much as WHY you’re watching, and HOW you process what you see in your brain and soul, and HOW it AFFECTS your brain and soul.

For instance, the other night, while I was able to go to bed knowing that what I watched is not how God wired women to be, and that the people (the actors) portraying these extramarital sexual actvities aren’t ever going to be able to satisfy the craving inside for love by having sex, my flesh was still awakened, and I basically felt like I was under attack (and, actually, to a large extent, I think I was) for a couple of days, like I REALLY couldn’t relax, when relaxation was what I was searching for by vegging in front of the TV in the first place.  Very ironic, and a lesson well learned.

So back to my question:  What is, in fact, “acceptable”?  And here’s my point (or at least a point to discuss):  I believe that the only person that we males were ever meant to see scantily clad or naked is our wives.  Period.  We can say, “well, the rest of the movie was good, and I wanted to see it,” or “you can’t escape it in today’s culture.”  I’m not denying that.  Sex is everywhere, it’s impossible to not notice.  I don’t want to get into what we can or can’t AVOID in this post, or suggesting that we CAN without becoming a hermit.  (which, by the way, becomes more and more attractive to me all the time)  I’m simply asking:  when God created us at the beginning of the world, what was his plan concerning our eyes, our brains, our hearts, and our souls?  And how much have we compromised in the name of “art” or “entertainment” or even viewing true human situations (as opposed to what LP calls “pop culture crap”) via TV and movies?  (It’s a GIVEN that the Internet falls into this category, so there’s no use in bringing THAT up here, either)

And again, I’m not stupid, NO ONE can watch large amounts of this stuff and not be affected.  It’s impossible.  So that extreme is a given, as well.

Again, the question:  what were we meant to see with our eyes, and subsequently our hearts and souls?

And even further, from a positive spin, what NOURISHES our hearts?  Sunday night, about 1 AM, there was a thunderclap here locally like I’ve never heard.  And in the hour that I was wide awake afterwards, I believe God had some words for me.  He cares about ONE THING.  Our HEARTS.  I’ve read it (see:  Eldredge, etc.), but it struck me anew Sunday night/Monday morning.  He doesn’t care about our acheivements, our morality, our abilities, any of that stuff, NEAR as much as He cares about our HEARTS.  He wants to NOURISH them with His Word, His presence, TIME with Him.  And, like I’ve said before, so MANY things in our culture do not nourish our hearts.  They may make them race with excitement or numb them, but ultimately, we need NOURISHMENT.  Peace.  Quiet.  “Shhh….listen.” moments should dominate our time, not be an occasional oasis.

So anyway, I’m not trying to be legalistic or totalitarian about the subject, I just want some opinions.  Discuss…and thanks!

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