Monday, July 4, 2011

See? Reading magazines does make you think.

I'm sitting at the kitchen table at Mother Joan and Howard's, my grandma and grandpa, tonight, flipping through a small fraction of her collection of magazines. I find an article that has something to do with families being so tech focused. There is a drawing of a family riding in a car together, with bluetooths, laptops, Ipads, cellphones, and the like. I point it out to Mom. "See, I don't really see what is wrong with this. I'm thinking it's okay to embrace it, since it's just the way life is today."

Mom glances at the article, then walks backwards a few steps to rest a hand on the counter. "I read an article about that too recently. The guy was saying that all of the tech stuff is blocking out our creativity."

The vision that I had had about television creating clouds over my brain flashed into, well, my brain. Crap.

"Well," I sputtered, "It can't be all bad. People are still creating things!"

"But you see Jon not wanting to paint or write anymore. He just sits in that chair on his laptop all day."

Crap again. "But what about the people creating the games that he plays?" Why was I arguing when I should be agreeing? Make me stop!

"But the article wasn't talking about creating those things. It was talking about painting."


"And things like that."


Short pause. Than I spoke again. "I did officially decide to not get a Twitter account. I realized that I would just be compacting my thoughts into one sentence, and putting them out there. I don't want to do that. Instead, I started blogging more. That's creative, right?"

Mom responded with enthusiasm to my somewhat pathetic attempt to soothe myself into believing I was a little right. "Yeah! That's good!"

But really, guys. This was something that I was actually thinking about earlier today. I had been thinking about how I, myself, don't paint. I'm much quicker to watch 2 episodes of the original Melrose Place back to back. I wait to practice the guitar at night, right before bed. Or I'll read my book right before bed. Yesterday I was thinking about how I used to write stories, and how I should get into that again. Even keeping up with the news, in the world and in the church. I keep phasing in and out of that too.

See, I don't want to be legalistic and say that television, movies, texting, Youtube, Facebook, Twitter, or any of that is bad. And I really don't believe it is bad. But, like anything, I have to use self-control. It would be the same with painting, writing, and guitar playing if I did that too much. I would have to make the choice to stop, so it doesn't eat up my life.

I know that I am constantly reexamining my priorities, but I'm okay with that now, because I'm constantly growing. And things around me are constantly changing and making me want to cope by doing different things. That's okay, but I can't let any of that become a habit that eats up my days and nights. I've gotta get control over myself. Self-control and self-worth is something that Jesus recently promised to give me recently. I didn't know what He meant by that at the time, but I bet this is it, or part of it.

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