Createsque

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Be careful little eyes!



By   Katherine Wilson      3:22 PM      Labels: , , , , , , , , , ,  



Hello dears! It's summer! And because it's summer I have started visiting the pool. Rather infrequently, but a few times so far. And guess what? Just about every time I go to get some sun while reading a book, I have seen at least one woman reading Fifty Shades of Grey. After seeing one of those sarcastic e cards on pinterest, and then seeing the girl on either side of me reading the book, one day I went online to see what it was. Amazon's reader reviews were enough to steer me clear of it, and I'm not even curious. Now, please do not think I am writing to bash the book. People have already written what I would say here and here, but rather, I want to address the BIG picture. What we spend our time consuming visually, mentally and aurally. 




{{First, I just want to make sure you understand that I am not in any way bashing the things I mention. There are many things in this world that can be used for good, but because of the effects of sin, everything can be abused, misused and twisted... even used by the deceiver (Satan) to make us miss the mark of where we should be in Christ. }}

So, here we go: 

Visually, I don't think we as women have as hard a time with steering clear of visually inappropriate things, but lately, I have noticed my pinterest visits have nearly doubled since I first joined a year ago. I scroll through the pin feed multiple times a day, even when I have seen everything my friends have pinned already. I find myself still wanting to see more when I get off, and wishing there was another site of its equivalent. It is a visual representation of STUFF. Things. 






I've talked about materialism before, so I won't go down that path, but I have noticed that I am toeing the line of being addicted to the site. It presents ideas and things in a very attractive light. Quotes about loving yourself and staying true to yourself are shallow, but we read them. Most of us are pretty good about thinking "oh that's stupid - next pin!" and keep going. But what about the desire for things that is fueled? Every picture of a pretty dress, every cute puppy or kitten, or in some cases a hot picture of Ryan Gosling feeds your desire for more this, more that, maybe even an equally hot boyfriend or an unrealistic picture of a woman's body that is 'skinny'. 

You cannot be content when you are constantly presented with a list of what you do not have! 

This is true of any commercials on TV, the radio, in stores, the e-mails you get after ordering from Lands End or any other store. We are presented with endless opportunities to lust after things of this world. 

Now, the visual/mental side. This is where you are left to use your imagination and create images yourself. Where Fifty Shades of Grey, and all other romance novels, etc. come in. You read a story. Stories are acceptable right? There's nothing wrong with fiction right? Well, to an extent, yes! We are created beings by the Creator, our Heavenly Father. Because of His nature, and His workmanship of the earth, we carry His Image within us.
We have the desire to create. 
To make something of ourselves, to make an impact. The list goes on. Therefore, we have the ability to create wonderful stories and places and abstract thoughts that can lead us to Christ. The Chronicles of Narnia are a wonderful example of a man's imagination pouring out images of another world, with a Christ character in Aslan, the lion.

      Unfortunately, we're sinful. And when we are not working in the Spirit towards greater oneness with God and his Will, our actions and creation is greatly flawed. The fact that there are books in the genre of erotica (basically a written form of porn) is an example of seriously flawed literature. We are not meant to fill our minds with desires and things of this world. Which includes unnatural relationships, and sexual encounters. We are meant to live in the Spirit. Not the flesh. 

     But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh, for these are opposed to each other, to keep you from doing the things you want to do. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, envy, drunkenness, orgies, and things like these. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.

(Galatians 5:16-21 ESV)


Do you remember that song?: 

Be careful little eyes what you see,
Be careful little eyes what you see,
For the Father up above is looking down with love, 
So be careful little eyes what you see. 

It goes on to list ears, hands, etc. to teach children that the Lord knows everything we see, hear, think, and do. Unfortunately with a media world saturated in the fact that "sex sells" we gradually become desensitized. Even though we may not admit that we have a guilty pleasure in watching a certain bawdy tv show, or a music artist with catchy music, but highly sexual content and themes, there is our Father above who is all seeing, All knowing. 

He sees our chasing after things other than Him, and it grieves him. Just as a wife who loves her husband grieves when he turns to porn for his sexual fulfillment instead of her. 

     A final area where I have found an unfortunate need to be careful of my consumerism is blogs. Yep. And I could be guilty of this myself! Here's how I see it. Blogs we read are just like spending time with a person in real life. We invest time reading them, just as we would going out and getting coffee with a person. Would you sit down with a friend/person who only talked about themselves and how awesome they are, or someone whining about their love life, lack of cute furniture, or a person who used unnecessary (inappropriate) language to express legitimate frustration? 




Source: flickr.com via Kate on Pinterest




If we were in a real friendship with people like this we would either distance ourselves to maintain a healthy relationship, or even avoid a friendship altogether, or we would confront them out of love and say "Hey, I understand, but this is what I see you need to work on... etc." That is because you have invested your time and effort, and hopefully prayerfully considered what your role is in that person's life. Blogs are different. We are (most of the time) not truly invested in these people's lives and therefore have no obligation to keep reading their entries. (Unless of course you feel led to witness to someone after a long time of cyber conversation, or meeting face to face) 

As bloggers We write about what we think, feel about things, (just as I am doing right now! Ack! haha) and maybe even dump if we're super frustrated about something. I am all about blogging authentically. As in, presenting yourself as you truly are, no frills, no facades. But there are some blogs out there that either act just as Pinterest does, fueling your desire for things of this world, or that weigh you down. I read the postsecret blog for about a month and realized the weight of the secrets posted were actually affecting my mood! I promptly stopped visiting the site and immediately felt better. 

Ok. You all probably think I am some kind of tight laced girl who won't let her kids watch movies when they grow up. NO! My kids will read fiction, watch disney movies and watch (controlled amounts) of tv. But, my point is this. 
There are many many tools for Satan to trip you up, or slowly lead you into new sins and paths away from God. I am not saying that unless the blog writer is a Christian you can't read any blogs. I am not saying you must cancel your account on pinterest. I am not saying you should only read Amish romance novels. NO! I am all about some quality literature peeps!

 I am saying: 

-All Truth (capital T there,) is God's Truth. And it sometimes comes from unexpected places. If there is a blog you read that presents the beauty of nature and the wonders of travel and sometimes points to some things that could be compared with the Bible and considered Truth,  by all means, keep it in your RSS feed! The same with books. Jane Austen never specifically mentioned God in her books, but they are great works of literature I think everyone should read. The same with any other (clean) contemporary fiction today. 




Source: flickr.com via Kate on Pinterest
 {socks with sandals, probably not the best fashion choice today...}


Here are a few questions I have started asking myself when finding new blogs, books, music.

     - Is there any edifying content? Or the potential of it? (skimming through old posts, or reviews or lyrics online can help with that)
     - If it is not edifying, what other qualities does it afford? Does it provide the means to find really tasty recipes to cook for my and my family's enjoyment? Does it give opportunities and resources for me to use in creating? For glorifying God by using my skills and talents? (Pinterest) In other words, is it useful in reasonable quantities and do I have the ability to use it wisely? If not, cut back, or stay away from it. 
     -  Does this (book, magazine, blog, website, movie, tv show) present themes that will hinder me spiritually? This is a person by person thing. If you are a new Christian, and used to watch a show that would now be considered unacceptable, and you find yourself slipping back, do not keep watching it! We are to move on to better things! 

     ...put off your old self, which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupt through deceitful desires, and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds, and to put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness.
(Ephesians 4:19-21; Ephesians 4:22-24 ESV)


So dear readers, I really hope you take this as encouragement. Sift through your browsing history, see where you have visited. Look at how much time you spend reading this, that or listening to other stuff. Just as a woman tosses all the junkfood in the house when she decides to diet, so we should put aside all things that are hindrances. That weigh us down. That contribute to our unrealized sins and desires that are not for Christ and His glory and God's will. We may find a huge difference in our demeanor! Let's clean house together, and be super shrewd, but not hard-nosed! 

     “Behold, I am sending you out as sheep in the midst of wolves, so be wise as serpents and innocent as doves."
(Matthew 10:16 ESV)




Congratulations for reading through the whole thing! Thanks for humoring me m'dears! 

About Katherine Wilson

Katherine is your typical white female who likes pumpkin spice lattes, anything fall scented, and the color 'mint'. But She also is the wife of a seminary student and a woman who strives to live a creative life for the glory of her maker. Now ain't that somethin' different?

3 comments :

  1. ok, i'm printing this out and am going to read it tomorrow, I can't wait, because I can tell ahead of time that I will be saying AMEN the whole time!

    ReplyDelete
  2. wow! There is a lot to digest in this post...but I have to say I was shaking my head in agreement with you like the whole way and feeling a little of that "ouch" in some areas...because it's so true how easily we--I, can get caught up in materialism and wasting inordinate amounts of time on my computer seeing lovely things and imagining how much awesomer my life would be with them. Not cool. It's very subtle though, I think many people don't even realize the pull of this stuff and snare it can be come, because lets be honest after perusing pinterest for any great length of time, my life in comparison to the perfected beauty of everything on there can seem quite dull in comparison. And that's not good! So thank you for this reminder and for your honesty :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. Jeanine, I was a little worried about the length of the post, but I'm glad you were willing to suffer through my writing! :) It was also written to myself, so reading back on it now after a week I'm getting the same "ouch" feeling. I'm also trying (not very successfully) to cut back my internet time and doing something else, but it's hard! haha

    I appreciate the feedback so much! I was worried people were upset or maybe mad about what I wrote, which is NEVER my intention!

    ReplyDelete

In this fast world we live in I know it sometimes takes a lot to stop and comment. Thank you for taking the time to leave a note! It truly makes my day!


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