"Garbage in ..."
December 3, 2012
(Jesus said) "For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false witness, slander." Matthew 15:19
This devotion begins with a confession.
About a decade or so ago I used to watch the CBS television program Two and a Half Men. When it first came on the air I thought it was a bit comical, at least in a mindless sort of way.
But then something happened. Actually, a number of things happened. First, the show, in a desire to top itself in the ratings, became filled with filth. Second, I found myself thinking these adults are using language the boy in the show shouldn't hear; the show has storylines to which a young mind shouldn't be exposed.
I had to stop watching.
As far as I was concerned the program didn't really exist. That's the way it has been at our house for a good many years. But a few weeks ago things changed. The actor, who plays Jake, Angus T. Jones, made a video, a witness for his church in Fremont, California. In that video he said, "If you watch Two and a Half Men, please stop watching Two and a Half Men. I'm on Two and a Half Men, and I don't want to be on it. Please stop filling your head with filth."
Jones, who makes over $350,000 an episode, said other things. For example, he confessed, "You cannot be a true God-fearing person and be on a television show like that. I know I can't. I'm not okay with what I'm learning, what the Bible says, and being on that television show."
Years ago I wondered what would happen to that young man, who was being exposed to so much garbage. Now I know. The Holy Spirit got hold of him and made him a witnessing Christian.
Now the point of this devotion is not to condemn Two and a Half Men, although I probably should have done so long ago. Nor is the goal of this devotion to point out the junk that passes as entertainment in our living rooms.
No, the purpose of this devotion is to thank the Lord for allowing a young man to make a witness that this pastor and many other adults should have made. And it is to offer up a prayer that other young folks may come to a similar courageous conclusion and do the same.
As for me and my house, we've learned a lesson.
We are going to be more discriminating about what is allowed on the TV. Not because we have to, but because, quite frankly, I don't think we could invite Jesus to sit down by our sides and watch some of the stuff the world has called "entertainment."
Oh, there's one other thing you might want to know. When the 19-year-old actor's mother heard about his comments, she expressed concern. She said she was worried her son was "being exploited by the church" -- not by the program, you understand, but by the church.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, be present in our homes, our entertainment, and in our lives. May we and especially our young people, glorify You and give thanks for the Savior. This we ask in Jesus' Name. Amen.
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries