When my son was 2 or 3 years old we put a TV in his room. I was tired of watching kid shows. From that time on I have controlled very closely what he is allowed to watch. You see he is not allowed to watch any new shows that I have approved. Some people may think this is kinda strict, and it is.
Here is what I believe we do good things because of the good that we have stored in our hearts and we do evil things because of the evil stored in our hearts. Why do I believe this? Because the Bible says so. Luke 6:45 “A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart.” This is true for us and it is true for our kids.
“GARBAGE IN, GARBAGE OUT!”
All to often we ignore this in our own lives. We honestly believe that we can fill our eyes, our minds and our hearts with evil things and then be able to do good. I am not saying that it is impossible, but as I read Luke 6:45 I understand that if I want good things to come naturally for me, then I must fill my heart with good things. The more I fill my heart with good things, the easier good things will become for me. Likewise, the more I fill my heart with evil things, the easier evil things will become for me.
All to often we expect our kids to do good things, but we allow them to store evil things in their hearts. I know that our kids want to watch the same shows that their friends are watching. They see commercials for shows that look cool or funny and they want to watch them. BUT, I want my kids to do good things out of the good stored in their heart.
So, how can I help my kids with this?
As a parent I can help them by controlling what they watch. You would not let your child drive your car. You would not let your toddler play around or in a pool unsupervised. Likewise we should not let them have free choice when it comes to what they watch. We have a responsibility to keep our kids physically safe. We also have a responsibility to help keep their minds and hearts safe.
Sometimes they need to touch the stove to know its hot.
Certainly there are times when I will stretch my standards a little. There are times when we will watch something as a family that I would never allow my children to watch by themselves. Why is this? Well, we are instructed to be IN THE WORLD BUT NOT OF IT. We are instructed to be AS WISE AS SERPENTS AND AS GENTLE AS DOVES. Part of being in the world is understanding it. Part of being wise as serpents is understanding the world around us. I use these as teachable moments. When watching such a show or movie I look for chances to teach my kids Biblical values and explain why what we have just watched may be good or bad.
At the end of the day the key is awareness. We have to KNOW WHAT OUR KIDS ARE WATCHING. This may mean that you sit down with them and watch some of their shows. It may mean that you get on the internet and do some research. What we can’t do is ignore this area of our children’s lives.Matt Norman
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