Given a choice, I will almost always stay at home. There are a few exceptions. I will go out somewhere if it's just Jamey and I. I will go out to spend time with a girlfriend. I will load up the kids and go hang out at a friend's house to visit/play. I will go to church and church-related meetings. I will get groceries (but I prefer to do it alone). I will take my kids to play at a friend's house. I will take my children to the doctor and/or dentist.
That's about it.
I wasn't always this way. When Jamey and I were first married, I wanted to go out, out, out. Granted, it was just he and I, but it was different because I wanted to go out to eat. I wanted to go to the movies. I wanted to go shopping for no reason. I wanted to go to a concert. I wanted to do something. I wanted diversion.
Over time, I've lost this need. I'm almost never bored at home like I used to be. There are kids to look after, meals to plan and prepare, a house and yard to take care of, books to read, produce to freeze and can, kids to teach, blog posts to write, bills to pay- the list goes on and on.
But, it's become more than just not being bored. I've started checking out society a bit. It no longer appeals to me to shop, spend money on movies, listen to music that doesn't support my world view, or eat a ridiculous portion of rich food that puts fat on my thighs and leaves me running to the bathroom immediately afterward anyway (I've been blessed with a mild form of IBS).
It's the world that says we need things we don't, have to go places we don't, and have to experience things we don't. If I am going to try to be in the world but not of it, I need to draw the line somewhere. I need to be content and the world does not foster contentment.
I'm not advocating becoming a hermit. We need each other. And how else are we going to impact this world for Christ? I just wonder what the motives are for the things we do.
Are we trying to fill a void that only Christ can fill through time spent with him? (This is always a challenge for me.)
Are we trying to buy up things and experiences that we think will make us happy?
Are we buying up things and experiences because that's what everyone else is doing?
Are we showing our kids how to live in the world and be of the world? Or, are we showing them that just because everyone else does it, doesn't mean it's a good choice? Are there really neutral choices anyway?
So, what can we (corporately) do instead? We can save that money we did not spend and give it to missions or to poor and starving people in other countries or next door or across town. We can use our time to make meals for those in need or who are going through rough patches or welcoming newborns. We can sew bags for health kits and school kits, make comforters for disaster victims, send funds to purchase the items needed, volunteer, visit shut-ins and the elderly, or invite neighbors for dinner. We can teach our kids from the Bible and let them help discern which activities would be worthwhile or not for our families.
We can be like Christ to others. Is that what we're doing when we're shopping aimlessly, being influenced by movies and music that promote the world's agenda, buying overpriced and unhealthy meals and participating in all manner of activities because that's what everyone else is doing?
I certainly don't have it figured out, but I cannot help but react to what many of us are letting ourselves get sucked into as Christians. We should not be passive. We are smarter than this and we know better.
"Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect."
Romans 12:2, New Living TranslationPin It