Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Why I don't watch Television

Is Television Taking Over Our Minds?

Today I want to talk about something I get asked a lot: why I don't watch television.

I originally unplugged from TV back in the 90s, and let me be honest, I'm not perfect. I still enjoy Netflix and the occasional movie. But something struck me when I was reading Romans 12:2: "And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God" (KJV). 

I realized I could sing along to jingles and recite commercials better than scripture! It freaked me out.  I was being programmed by the world.  After some research, I learned about a study that showed television puts your mind into a state similar to hypnosis, making it receptive to suggestion.  Basically, the constant stream of images bypasses critical thinking, and you end up believing what you see. 

Think about it - how often can you tell which news channel someone watches based on their opinions?  It's scary, but television can program your way of thinking without you even realizing it. 

James 4:4 says: "Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God" (KJV). That's pretty strong language, but it's true!  We are called to be different in this world. 

Our minds are like sponges, absorbing what's around us.  Are we filling them with the things of God or the things of the world?  James 1:27 tells us "Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world" (KJV). 

Television can also weaken our faith.  For example, if we have a headache, instead of praying, we might just reach for a pill because that's what we've seen on TV.  The Bible tells us that "the just shall live by faith" (Habakkuk 2:4) [3]. 

Instead of filling our minds with "garbage" (Philippians 4:8), shouldn't we be focusing on what's truly good and right? [5]. 

Listen, I'm not saying I'm perfect. I do indulge occasionally. But I challenge you to be mindful of what you consume. Let's prioritize things that will build our faith, not weaken it. 

What are your thoughts? Does television play a role in your faith walk? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

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