14 June 2011

Oh, be careful, little eyes, what you see!

My name is Saralynn, and I used to be an avid watcher of The Office.

Used to be.

And before I go on, please let me emphatically state that this post is about me and my convictions, not about you. I don’t mean to seem egotistical or anything, but I want to make it clear that I’m just describing my own experience and my own reflections, and I am in no way commenting on your experience. All clear? Ok.

That being said, if you identify with this post, feel free to comment.

So I used to watch The Office on Netflix. I never saw it on TV, but I could sit down and watch it for a couple hours at a time when I had nothing better to do. It’s been about a year now since I watched it, and this is why:

I don’t think I could have invited my Savior to come watch it with me.

I could hardly call myself spiritually mature, but I was so convicted over this that I just had to stop watching it. I’d started watching it because it had been recommended by a co-worker back when I worked in an office in 2005. And when I first started watching it in 2009, I thought it was hilarious. I identified with some of the characters and fell right into the storylines. (Dwight reminded me of someone I knew in college. Scary, I know.) But the more I watched, the more uncomfortable I became during episodes. I thought I’d be embarrassed if my husband were to watch it with me, let alone my parents. There was an excess of sexual humor, and most of the non-sexual humor was put-me-downs. Funny? Yes! But that just shows how twisted my sense of humor has become.

Finally, one day when I sat down to watch it, I had to turn it off. I just felt guilty watching it, especially when there are so many better things to watch – more wholesome. True, there are better things to do than watch TV, but even if I’m going to watch TV, I could be watching much cleaner things.

I hadn’t really thought about it again for many months. Then a few weeks ago, a few friends were talking about having seen a new movie in the theater, and they agreed it wasn’t the type of movie they’d take their moms to see, that the moms would be embarrassed.

And I thought, Why would I want to see a movie that I couldn’t share with my mom? Yes, I’ve seen those sorts of movies before (and sometimes realized too late that I shouldn’t have shared them with my mom!), but when I sit down and think about it, why? Why would I waste my time with a movie that is not clean enough that I would not be embarrassed to watch it with my mom? I’d like to think if Jesus were alive today, he’d occasionally be OK with kicking back with a bowl of popcorn and a flick. What would he want to watch? Would I have to stand in front of the TV so as not to embarrass him or myself with scantily clad women/men? Would I have to mute the sound so as not to offend him with the language? Then what’s the point?

So I’ve decided to challenge myself to really think about that every time I pick a TV show or movie to watch. If I’m going to watch something, I might as well make it something wholesome and worthwhile… Scoot over and make room for Jesus on the couch!