For the longest time, I’ve been an avid television viewer. On summer days as a child, I would dive for hours into the world of Laura Ingalls Wilder in “Little House on the Prairie.” How I loved to experience life through Laura’s perspective…as she roamed the woods, played in the creek, and swooned over Almanzo–her crush, and later, her husband.
As I’ve grown older, I’ve developed a definite taste for Turner Classic Movies. I love exploring ages of the past by watching classy actors and actresses sing, dance, and act. When I was in high school (specifically in my senior year), I would come home from school, and the first thing I would do is grab a snack and then head downstairs to watch my movie for the day. It could have been a classic with Fred Astaire, Cary Grant, or Audrey Hepburn–just FANTASTIC. However, not only would I watch the one movie, but I would watch television for at least 2-3 hours before going to bed–sometimes while doing my homework. Television became part of my lifestyle, and as I spent more time watching, it squeezed out the time I could have spent in the Bible, in prayer, volunteering, or really anything else productive!
It wasn’t until I came to college (WITHOUT A TV!) that I realized how much time I had been wasting every day. When I started out the year here, I thought I would have MAJOR withdrawal from the worlds I had been entering through the television screen everyday. However, I’ve found an amazing freedom in time that I never thought I’d be able to have.
Instead of spending time watching how others live their lives, now I have the opportunity to FULLY live my own. Instead of spending hours of my life observing through a screen, now I have an unwritten opportunity for God to create His script for me. I have so much more awareness now for the opportunities around me, including such things as fully engaging in my homework and blogging.
Now, of course, watching the television isn’t harmful in itself. However, I found that I was watching it in excess; and, instead of searching for places to grow and serve, I spent so much time in the comfort of my recliner chair at home. I NEVER want to go back to a “recliner” type of life. I know that God will be able to use me SO much more by my being engaged in life instead of being an observer of it.
Each of us has our own distractions. I encourage you to ponder what in your life may be preventing you from fully living, and especially what is hindering God from using you FULLY. He longs for us to surrender those blinders so that He can show us His vision for us so clearly.