Recently, I was given a DVD set of Downton Abbey, a prominent TV series. The gifter told me the series reminded her of me and would speak to me like Anne of Green Gables. Having heard great things about the series from friends and family, I was so excited to watch it.
Several days passed, and I finally had the time to work in the first episode one night. I got my pj’s on early. Brewed a pot of tea. Grabbed the softest blanket. Finally I settled in for what was sure to be a memorable evening.
The first scene opened in a gorgeous mansion, the furnishings were exceptional, charming accents were everywhere, the clothing was lovely. This was going to be good! Fifteen minutes later, the show was stopped, and I was listing the DVD set on eBay.
What happened to turn my expectations from this prominent start? A homosexual love scene/break up. I know what you are thinking. Not again, not another hate-rant from a so-called Christian about homosexuality. I promise that this post is not that, so please read onward.
A quick Google search confirmed my doubts about the show. It contained premarital sex, marital infidelity, and homosexual relations. Ongoing themes include seduction, cheating and greed. In black and white this sounds terrible, and yet I know many strong Christians, sisters in Christ who I love dearly and trust greatly, who are “addicted” to this show. How did that happen? Seduction!
The show offers a glimpse at another time, a grander view at life. As I said, it offers lovely views of houses, furniture, and clothing. There are servants, sparkling crystal, and shining silver. I am enchanted by the elegance of it all; it appeals to my female senses on every level. And that’s how ladies I love have been seduced by the beauty and presentation of this show. Their enchantment is so great that they fail to notice the immorality.
After we shut off the show, my husband and I had a long talk about the world today. We see marriages dissolving over infidelity, unmarried couples brazenly living together, young high school girls intentionally getting pregnant. We think of the conversations we’ve had with other believers about how far this world has fallen, and yet some of these same people will watch this show (or some like it) with celebrated enthusiasm, claiming it to be the highlight of their week.
The Bible warns against this subtle seduction and encourages us to guard our hearts by protecting our eyes and ears.
“My son, attend to my words; incline thine ear unto my sayings. Let them not depart from thine eyes; keep them in the midst of thine heart. For they are life unto those that find them, and health to all their flesh. Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life. Put away from thee a froward mouth, and perverse lips put far from thee. Let thine eyes look right on, and let thine eyelids look straight before thee. Ponder the path of thy feet, and let all thy ways be established.” Proverbs 4:20-26
I don’t want to be seduced into immorality by a cleverly produced TV show. I don’t want to welcome wrong behavior into my home because it comes in the guise of fiction. I don’t want to close my eyes to Biblical standards in pursuit of entertainment. I want shows that teach me good morals. I want wholesome plots that children can watch with me. I want entertainment that agrees with the life I have chosen to live.
This has become our family’s pursuit. We evaluated our standards and asked a series of questions:
- Which movies honor the lifestyle we have chosen to live?
- Which movies reinforce our values?
- Which movies teach a moral lesson?
- Most importantly, which movies would we watch with Jesus?
From now on, we are committed to evaluating all incoming movies with these questions. For me, I have to be aware that my sensibilities allow seduction in beauty, history and homemaking. For my husband, he has realized his seduction comes in comedy, the brief reprieve from this world’s cares and stresses. Now that we know these areas of weakness, we press on with our new mantra. Watch out Downton Abbey and other shows. We ask if you are filth? And if the answer is yes, we say NO MORE!
What are your families downfalls? How have you taken precautions to guard against them?