I’ve been receiving painful chastisement lately. I needed it. It took me a long time to listen and heed the voice of the Holy Spirit. I don’t mean to scare you but there is a price to pay when we stubbornly disobey. And chastisements come because the Lord Jesus Christ cares for us and for our salvation more than we ever do.
(image from Google)
Although I have known long before that when we try to entertain ourselves more than we should and with the things that may dilute our spiritual fervor, a painful reminder will descend from the Savior – still, I let myself lured into it for a season. I know that for other Christians, this is just fine with them. The “safe” entertainment, I mean. But, for those who are in the pursuit of true holiness, this dalliance with earthly things cannot run for long.
Towards the end of summer (our summer here in the Philippines), I became engrossed in watching period dramas, more specifically, BBC TV adaptation of 18th century novels. I watched via YouTube which is connected to my flat TV. (We had disconnected our cable TV more than a year ago and my TV has no antenna, so there’s no TV watching). Although I was very selective in the things I watched (except the very last one which I did not finish) and carefully read reviews before I even considered watching – no sexual scenes, no foul language, no or very little violence, and there is a certain degree of goodness, inspiration, and morale from the story and characters, still, I felt I was being drawn away from things spiritual.
Though we may consider these as “safe” entertainment, these are still secular and later on, it would chip away at our prayer and worship life. It will dilute our fervency in all things spiritual – like seeking God’s face with all our hearts, souls and minds and with weeping.
I had mental excuses like, “What shall I do with my idle time when I’m bound in bed like this? What shall I do while I rest and can’t do any other thing like bake, cook, etc.?”
This was the answer:
4 But we will give ourselves continually to prayer, and to the ministry of the word. (Acts 6:4)
Give ourselves continually to prayer. We are told not only to pray continually, but to give ourselves to it. Surrender our members to it. And our time.
And also this:
…his delight is in the law of the Lord,
And in His law [Word] he meditates day and night. (Psalm 1: 2, annotation mine)
I know that there are many, even Christians, who entertain themselves with secular TV, movies, the Internet, and virtual games. But this should not be our pattern. We need not be like them. On Facebook alone, I see a lot of people, Christians included, who spend so much time playing games. May we not succumb to such spiritually unprofitable entertainment!
There is a constant need to be vigilant. And this is our very powerful weapon against temptation:
Watch and pray, lest you enter into temptation… (Mat. 26:41)
Watch out what we think, see, hear, and put ourselves into doing. And cover our hours with prayer. This is the promise:
He shall be like a tree
Planted by the rivers of water,
That brings forth its fruit in its season,
Whose leaf also shall not wither;
And whatever he does shall prosper. (Psalm 1:3)
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Journey with Jesus,