How much “weight” do we give to God?
How much “weight” do we give to God and our Lord Jesus Christ? How much do we consider Him with awe and reverence and depth on a constant basis?
Thanks to TV, not much, according to insightful pastor-author John Piper.
Because of the trivial and fleeting nature of televised programs, and the fact most American citizens spend copious hours consuming them every week, “we have become almost incapable of handling any great truth reverently and deeply,” Piper writes in his book Don’t Waste Your Life. “Magnificent things, especially the glory of God, rest with a kind of weightlessness, even on the church.”
What’s wrong with spending a little time relaxing in front of the television? In and of itself it’s not wrong, I suppose. But all of those hours diminish our ability to deepen a right relationship with the One who deserves all of us, Piper concludes.
“Therefore, the man who stands before God with his well-kept avoidance ethic,” Piper writes, “and his protest that he did not spend too much time at the office but came home and watched TV with his family, will probably not escape the indictment that he wasted his life. Jesus rebuked his disciples with words that easily apply to this man: ‘Even sinners work hard, avoid gross sin, watch TV at night, and do fun stuff on the weekend. What more are you doing than the others?’” (see Luke 6:32-34; Matthew 5:47).
Is Piper right? Or is he envisioning a problem where one does not exist?
Please weigh in with your thoughts.
I think one of the fundamental changes that we must consider is the whole climate and culture that has grown around anything considered to be a “weighty” topic. As a society in general and especially the younger generations growing into adulthood now, we are losing the desire to know things in any kind of depth. Whether that knowing comes from doing extensive research, deep introspection or delayed gratification in order to first “know” what desire we so urgently need to fill.
Today, for the most part we are satisfied with quick Wiki answers, blog morality and Madison ave virtues. The explosion of the computer technology, global connectivity and social media has presented mankind with an incredible opportunity not only to do good, but to know and share God in ways that were impossible just five years ago. Unfortunately human nature and Satan’s influence makes these tools just another distraction platform for keeping our attention diverted while our life clock ticks away.
Is TV bad? No more so than any other activity. It always comes back to what we bring in our hearts and intentions to the actions and choices we make. Do we use our time to glorify God and do the work that he commanded us to do? When Moses said “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. These words, which I am commanding you today, shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up” (Deuteronomy 6:5-8), he didn’t have a 60″ plasma screens to deal with. So when I “sit in my house” with my son and daughters (and my kooky neighbors) it is up to me to make sure that God was invited and that the time spent there is to reflect and teach the values God wants us to embody. Sometimes that can be just being together and sharing love.
I would agree with the fact that we do not spend much time delving deeper into things. We want our information in small bite-sized nuggets, we want quick analysis of the issues, with quick solutions that don’t impress too much of a burden.
We would all benefit from more deeper thinking and less distractions.