Where do I Draw the Line on what I Read, Watch, or Listen to?

How on earth do we decide we decide where to draw the line on this? If we decided to completely ignore anything graphic, then we wouldn’t even be able to read the bible!

In the comments section of a previous post several people mentioned wanting to get rid of things they deemed unhelpful, maybe books, music or TV shows. This got me thinking about this subject, how personal it can be to different people, and how I set my own standards on this. As I was thinking about this, three bible verses popped into my mind.

Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.  (Phil 4:8)

The bible commands us to think lovely thoughts. I’m pretty sure that its hard to watch TV shows which are vile and keep our minds pure. Soon we start thinking about what we have been watching and our minds become polluted. I think this can be especially dangerous in the music we listen to. How often have you found your self singing a song you had heard, only to realise exactly what you are singing! Song lyrics can so easily get stuck in our brains, and can seem impossible to get rid of once they are in there!

Ask yourself: is this keeping my thoughts on track?

“I have the right to do anything,” you say—but not everything is beneficial. “I have the right to do anything”—but not everything is constructive. (1 Cor 10:23)

All things are permissible, not all things are beneficial. Just because something is technically okay, doesn’t mean it’s a good idea. Filling our minds with certain things could lead to obsession or dissatisfaction with our own lives. That’s not a good idea, let’s try and watch things which are beneficial in someway. Even if it is just in helping us to unwind.

This is something which will be different for everyone. Some things may have a negative affect on some people but not on others. This may be where you need to spend sometime asking God to help you make wise decisions. 

Ask yourself: is this beneficial?

Therefore, if what I eat causes my brother or sister to fall into sin, I will never eat meat again, so that I will not cause them to fall. (1 Cor 8:13)

This verse is a response to one of the hot topics in the times of the early church: is it okay to eat food sacrificed to false God’s? Paul responds to this by saying that, yes, it is okay, as long as by doing this you are not leading other believers into sin. If they see you eating food sacrificed to false God’s would it make them think that its okay to worship them as well!

As Christians we not only have a responsibility to ourselves, but for others too.

Maybe listening to Taylor Swift sing about her long list of ex-lovers doesn’t have a negative impact on me or you. We can listen to it and not want to emulate her lifestyle.

But what about others?

I don’t know, but maybe your friend who hears you singing along thinks that you agree with Taylor Swift, and that it is okay to stumble.

Ask yourself: will this have a negative impact on other believers?

At the end of the day, this really is a very personal thing, and different people will have many different opinions, for their own reasons.

One last thing: nobody has got this perfect, we all make mistakes, so please don’t be judgemental of people who maybe have lower standards than you. The Holy Spirit convicts people at the right time, if you are worried about them, pray.

These are just a few of my own thoughts on this subject, please, please, please share your own wisdom, I would love to hear it!

Advertisements

13 thoughts on “Where do I Draw the Line on what I Read, Watch, or Listen to?

  1. I like your post. My husband and I make sure that if we rent movies we check out the parental guide on imdb.com to make sure there is no nudity or sexual scenes. Pornography is everywhere in today’s world. You cannot go to a store without seeing perverse magazines on end-caps at eye level to children. I have made a habit of turning magazines backward or putting something not so obscene in front of the filthy ones. Vulgarity is the new vogue. Things that use to make people blush and ashamed are now out in the open and acceptable. It is a hard, harsh world that Christians live in today. I often have to turn my head or plug my ears when I am in public, but amongst all the darkness I know that I can be a light because of the Lord. I have to go into the world because Jesus needs to be taught. Just remember to never be a friend of the world – do not allow yourself to fall into the fads that are currently acceptable. Jesus never changes, the world & the way people perceive things will always change. Continue to fight the good fight & do not let anything that is ungodly enter your body, heart, or mind. Pray unceasingly for protection against the evil influences that are everywhere.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. This is a great post 🙂

    I put what I think in post earlier this week. Long story short is that if we put too much emphasis on what we are for or against, Jesus gets lost in the conversation.

    “Sometimes [as Christians] our stances on issues are stronger than the Bible’s stance on them.

    Look at the comment section of any quasi-religious story or video and you are likely to find a Christian explaining why they are against whatever is being discussed and why it’s wrong in the eyes of God. It seems we mistake taking a stand for Jesus as synonymous with taking a stance against everything we personally don’t like or agree with.

    It’s like we build these soapboxes of self-righteousness and then we climb on them with our bullhorns trying to win everyone else over to our point of view. Try asking someone you know who isn’t a Christian what it means to be a Christian. You might find that their answer has little or nothing to do with following Jesus, but they probably know what things Christians typically view as sinful.

    In building our platform on what we are against we have often neglected to establish a foundation of what we are for.”

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks! Yes, I even read something a while ago saying why c s Lewis books were un christian. It’s so sad that christians seem to love arguing, and often spend more time doing that than actually sharing the good news.
      Good point about the views of non christians, that has been my experience as well.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Hi Cherry, As a person who came to faith later in life and had spent most of that life not worrying about these things you make some good points.
    My hobby has always been war-games and role-playing, after coming to faith I had to think through this. First God dealt with the addition of my hobby coming first in all things. SO now although I play it is not all consuming and God always comes first with the needs of others next.
    Some have said why do you still play these games?
    1/ I find relaxation from them.
    2/ It allows me contact with non Christians, how are we to share our faith and life standards if we never have contact with non believers?
    3/ God has not removed my desire to play, which He will when He needs to. He did for a while.
    You are right some thing are to extreme, but each person has to talk with God about what is right for them and Gods need for us to interact with others.
    Thanks for the post.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m part of a Christian family who roleplays every week so I can relate somewhat Chris. We meet with a few non-Christian family friends and we see it as an opportunity to witness (and have fun with our friends!). We’re their friends first but ultimately we hope to bring them back into the church (they all have Christian background to different extents).

      However I know of someone who had to give up almost everything fantasy and game related because part of his salvation involved being freed from the occult. For him the “magic” is far too close to the reality.

      God has a relationship with us as a whole but also incredibly nuanced and varied relations with each and every individual. So I definitely appreciate Ally’s point that it’s not always going to be a one size fits all deal.

      Like

    • Thanks for commenting, hope you and Bernie are well 😄 Its good to have hobbies and be able to do things you enjoy, even better if it allows you to share your faith with them. Even though we are not called to be of the world we are still living in it 😄

      Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s