March 4, Saturday

The AMI QT Devotionals from February 27-March 5 are provided by Pastor Yohan Lee who serves at Radiance Christian Church in San Francisco.  

DEVOTIONAL THOUGHT FOR TODAY

Freedom

1 Corinthians 6:12

All things are lawful for me, but not all things are helpful. All things are lawful for me, but I will not be dominated by anything.

3My oldest son has a unique gift:  he can watch anything—and I mean anything—on television.  Obviously, he has his favorites—like cartoons and all things related to Star Wars—but I could be watching a home improvement show, nature show, sitcom, drama, he’ll come, sit on the couch, and watch attentatively with me.  I kid you not, after the election, I watched lots of news, and he was all over that as well.  You know where he gets this gift?  From his old man.  You see, I understand my son because he is just like me—I too can watch anything on TV.  The other day I was watching Avatar, and my wife looked at me, laughed and asked, “Why are you watching that stupid movie? You hate it.” (Sorry, if you liked that movie, but she’s right, I do hate it.)  I had no good explanation, so I think I said, “Because it’s on.”  Perhaps there is something in our DNA that is attracted to the movements, flickering lights and sounds of the TV, but we are like moths drawn to the flame.

So when it comes to TV, I have to be very careful, because I know myself, and I can get hooked into a show very quickly.  And if that show is on Netflix, I have to be especially careful because I know I’m going to binge watch until I’ve completed it. My addictive personality is why I won’t even start an episode of Breaking Bad because if I start watching it, just like Walter White, I’ll get lost in this world I don’t want to be in.

So is there anything sinful about television?  Generally speaking, no.  Television is just another form of entertainment.  But am I in danger of becoming “dominated” or “mastered” by it?  Yes.  So I choose to stay away from highly addictive shows.  Is there anything unlawful about television?  No, but is watching that much TV “helpful”?  Probably not, I could be using all those hours to love my kids, talk to my wife, serve in some ministry, or simply pray or read the Bible.

When it comes to how we spend our time or money, how we entertain ourselves, or how we exercise our Christian liberties, let’s stop simply asking whether it is “lawful” or not, but let’s begin by asking, “Is it helpful to my life in Christ?”  Let’s also ask, “Will I be able to control myself or master this?”  If the answer to either of those questions is no, then let’s examine why we want to do them in the first place.

Prayer: Heavenly Father, let my heart’s desire be to honor You.  Please help me to overcome the temptation to make faith about the “minimum things I need to do to keep You happy.”  Also, keep me from legalism and grant me wisdom in all things.  Amen.

Bible Reading for Today: Revelation 14-15

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