Monday, June 1, 2009

What Does God Think of ESPN?

Each morning before school, my oldest son watches ESPN; you know, the 24-hour sports network. And, like most 14-year-olds, he leaves the TV on as he heads off to school. Usually, at this time of the day, I'm in the bathroom putting on my make-up and drying my hair. All the while, I can hear the blaring sportscasters giving the latest game scores and dishing on the latest gossip regarding the players. (I especially love to hear how much so-and-so is making for throwing a ball for a living! I'm also waiting to have my first student who is named Espn, pronounced Espen. I read a few years ago that it's an up and coming name for both boys and girls!)

The other morning, as I was mindlessly listening to the banter, this thought popped into my head: "Why do we need a 24-hour sports network or any other 24-hour "idol" worship? Why aren't we focusing on and worshipping God 24/7, and where is that 24-hour Christian network?"

Now, I only have expanded basic cable, so maybe there is a 24-hour Christian network that I don't know about. We do have one Christian station that we get, but in no way are big bucks spent on it to make it as slick and attractive as ESPN or other big networks. Why is that? Why are we so out of balance as to what we spend on our time and money on? I don't mean to be pointing a finger because I'm just as guilty. Even if there is a wonderful, up-to-date and current Christian television network out there, should we be spending a lot of time watching it?

Most of us are attracted to what's pretty or flashy. Those nice flat screen TVs make everything look colorful and sharp. We don't own one of these, but we love watching the one my parent's have. Especially the sports because you feel as if you're right there in person. (Although, I really didn't need to see that the Phillies' manager has hair growing out of his ears!) Unfortunately, anything pretty, flashy and colorful seems much more exciting than reading any of the 66 books in the Bible. It's a thick book! And mine doesn't have any pictures in it!

I guess my point is that technology (and that includes blogging!) can really become an "idol" to us. We need to remember that God doesn't like that!

You shall have no other gods before me. You shall not make for yourself an idol in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below. You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God,... Exodus 20:3-5

Do not make any gods to be alongside me; do not make for yourselves gods of silver or gods of gold. Exodus 20:23

Just for fun, I came up with some of my own titles that ESPN could stand for if it was a Christian network:

  • El Shaddai Praise Now

  • Everyone Shall Pray Now

  • Everyone's Soul Pleasing Nourishment

  • Everyone's Saviour Performing Nightly

  • Eternity's Some Place Nice

  • Eternity's Soothing Peace Needed

  • Everyone's Saviour Painfully Needed

Okay, I know these are a stretch! I'm just being silly!

Seriously though, we need to be bold in striving to remove idols from our life and to focus more on God and His written Word. Remember, we're in this world but not of this world and have to try not to get sucked in. I'm in no way perfect and struggle daily with this. I just pray that we as Christians can be tuned into God's network 24/7 rather than anything else! Heaven will be more fascinating, beautiful and fancy than anything else here on earth!


L Harris said...

Just stopping by from Expectant Hearts. Great post! Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

Laurie said...

"Seriously though, we need to be bold in striving to remove idols from our life and to focus more on God and His written Word."
WOW, sister- that is the truth.
I appreciate your honesty and the conviction it brings! Blessings,

Andrea said...


Heart2Heart said...

This is so true! We do have 24 hour Christian programming here, but you still have to be alert to the content behind the message. Some I just don't agree with and feel led to change the channel.

Come July though, it's goodbye TV!

Love and Hugs ~ Kat

Sue J. said...

Actually, a lot of folks who graduated with, before and after me work at ESPN. I was the station manager at the radio station where Karl Ravich started. (Karl is now the host of Paseball Tonight.)

You and I both know it's not really ESPN so much as it's our focus on things earthly. Too much time spent there means we are not focused on Who we should be focusing on.

As for the whole Christian broadcasting thing, I'm not sure we need 24 hours of broadcasting, although that might reach folks at different times of the day. See, even too much Christian TV would take us away from our serving one another.

Then, there's the whole issue of the Christian influence on popular culture. Look at this year's American Idol competition. Would would happen if someone like Compassion International had one of its commercials on Idol?!

You raise lots of interesting points here and could definitely elaborate on each in separate posts. Little did your son know what he was doing this morning....

Beth.. One Blessed Nana said...

my husband and I made the decision 2 years ago to turn off DISH and we can't get cable where we live in the boonies. We haven't missed the TV at all. It was always on and we used it to fill time. I am so glad that we made the choice to turn it off. We spend more time in the Word.

Kathryn @ Expectant Hearts said...

Oh, VERY good points! AT our house it's ESPN and NFL network.. I do try and have periods of silence and periods of praise music..

Thanks for sharing.. and visiting me earlier today!

momstheword said...

Yeah, I have no idea about a 24 hour Christian network either....however, the Bible is available 24 hours and so is God, right?

Great post. I find I have to be careful with blogging, it can take up so much time!

momstheword said...

Thank you for responding! I agree that it does allow our personality to shine though. I, myself, like a little variety too.

I know some blogs are strictly frugal, or organization, but I just have never done that either. I'm like you, a little this, a little that!