We are usually cautious about what we allow our ten and eight-year-old to watch on TV. They often ask why they can’t watch some of the movies or shows that their friends are watching. A few weeks ago, we were flipping through channels and landed on the movie, Titanic. We happened to tune in about the time the ship had begun to take on water, and we thought it would interest the kids since they had both studied or read about it at school. However, we completely forgot about the scene near the end where the lifeboats returned to find dead bodies floating in the water.
Josie and Colby both got upset, and Colby covered his face and started crying. He said, “Daddy, turn it! I don’t want to see those people!” We spent the next several nights trying to fill their minds with worship music and walk them back to their rooms after they came out afraid. When they closed their eyes, they saw images of dead people. This is when our message to them, “you can’t unsee things,” really hit home.
As much as we guard what our children see and hear, we were reminded that it’s equally crucial for us to filter our own content. Proverbs 4:23 tells us to “guard our hearts with all diligence because from it flow the springs of life.” Whether it’s TV, music, news sources, social media, or friendships, what we think about affects our attitude, then settles into a thought process, which shapes a belief. Then our actions flow out of our belief systems.
Just like we put oil or air filters on our automobiles to keep trash or impurities from coming in, we need to be intentional about filtering what comes into our lives. God has given us guidelines for what’s best for us to spend our time dwelling on. Philippians 4:8 says, “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.” What would happen if we memorized this verse and posted it on a note on our TVs, computers, or made it a home screen on our phones? Would the content we currently watch or listen to still be an option?
Our prayer is that we would lock down the content that we allow to influence our lives. It’s important that you, as a couple, develop a strategy to keep your minds set on the things that will rightly influence your thinking and actions. This might mean cutting out certain binge-watches, getting filters on devices, setting parameters on social media, or even spending less time with negative friends. Then find replacements that stand up to the Philippians 4:8 test and see how it affects your attitude, your family, and your marriage.
Enjoying the Adventure,
Daniel & Bonnie