Your entertainment defines you, reflecting your relationship with God
Because your entertainment defines you, it's essential that you watch what you do with your spare time.
There's no doubt about it. As single Christians, we can get into trouble if we're not vigilant. The Enemy provides more temptations today than ever.
Not only do we need to guard our thought life, we also need to watch where we go and
"God can't see me here."
The Bible tells us that God is omni-present--or everywhere. But sometimes we play childish rationalization games.
"I can hide from God in this place. Surely he's not here, so I can do whatever I please," we think. Are we so naive as to believe that God can't see us in bars or clubs or certain movie theaters where we, as Christians, shouldn't be hanging out?
Or, if we're far away from our home town and our relatives, do we think it's okay because somebody we know can't see us?
"I'm just going along with my friends."
Peer pressure is a powerful influence. Maybe our friends automatically do the same thing whenever they have free time. This might be true for members of the military, who go to bars or objectionable clubs whenever they have leave.
Many businesses prey on military people who are bored, lonely, and far from home. It's a strong lure, but a harmful one.
When you refuse to go along with your friends, be prepared for ridicule, insults, mockery, and hurt. But think for a moment. Are they really your friends if they try to shame you into doing something you believe is wrong?
Your entertainment defines you; it shows others you're either a conscientious Christian or a hypocritical Christian. You have to decide how you want to be seen by your friends. And, you have to decide who your true friend is: somebody who would lead you down the wrong path, or Jesus Christ.
That isn't a tough choice, is it?
"I'm entitled to do this while I'm young."
That has to be the dumbest reason for engaging in unhealthy behavior.
Does that mean when you're older, smarter, and more mature that you'll know better than to do stupid things? Why not grow up right now and bypass all that self-destructive behavior altogether?
Your entertainment defines you as either a person who takes God seriously or one who compartmentalizes your life into God-respecting behavior and God-defying behavior.
No matter what our age, we're never "entitled" to sin. And if we're honest, that's what some behavior really is.
"So what's my alternative?"
Your entertainment defines you, not just to other people, but to yourself as well.
When you lower your standards, you think less of yourself. Your self esteem suffers when you don't care enough about yourself to choose God's way.
It will take some effort on your part, but you can break old habits by remembering that first, the Holy Spirit is always ready to help you grow closer to God, and second, by substituting a positive habit for the self-destructive one.
There are plenty of good, worthwhile movies to watch. There are restaurants where you can enjoy a good meal in a positive atmosphere.
There are hobbies like photography, carving, reading, jewelry making, and other crafts you can do anywhere in the world, in a minimum of space. Every major city has clean, fascinating things to see.
You owe yourself better
God loves you. He wants the best for you. He gave you a free will so you have the power to choose the best for yourself.
Remembering that your entertainment defines you makes you an authentic person. You're not one person when family or friends are watching and another person when they aren't. You're not a Christian only when you're in church; it's a full-time calling.
You do have the strength to choose positive, esteem-building activities for your spare time.
When you have a weekend free, you want to feel good about yourself on Saturday or Sunday morning. You don't want to feel guilty or ashamed of something you did the night before.
When you make good choices--God-honoring choices--you can be sure that God will bless you for it.