Some of you may remember when I wrote about my experience attending a camp called Worldview. If you haven’t read that post yet, make sure to check it out here: (https://keziahe.home.blog/2019/06/15/worldview-academy-camp-and-the-amazing-time-i-had-there/) Attending Worldview did SO much to how I viewed the world and people around me and I wanted to share some of what I learned there.
There was an immense amount of AMAZING speakers that taught the lectures at Worldview, including Jeff Baldwin, J. Mark Bertrand, Micah Gibson and Brandon Booth. I learned so much from each of these speakers, and one of the lectures – was about reading books and watching movies and viewing them in a Godly manner. This lecture was taught by Jeff Baldwin and was absolutely AMAZING!!
Anyways, on to the part of this post where I ACTUALLY share with you what I learned and when I stop rambling over how amazing Worldview is. But first, make sure to check out the link to their website provided. It’s definitely a camp worth checking out!!
Okay! So, before I start, I want to say that I learned all of this in a lecture by Jeff Baldwin and give full credit to him for sharing this with me and my fellow campers. I am not saying that I came up with any of this, but merely am sharing with you what I learned from him. That being said, let’s get started!!
We are surrounded by a worldview that suggests that we watch raunchy films and read horror novels, a lot of things that we often know are wrong, but we get sucked into the storyline anyways and write it off as being ‘okay’. We justify them by saying that it has a good plot and we shut out any negative thoughts that try to invade our brain on the matter.
It’s not necessarily wrong to read horror novels, as long as it doesn’t effect the way that you view the world around you. If you read a romance novel and afterwards have a desire to physically engage with people of the opposite gender around you, then you need to stop reading those books. If you watch a movie full of cussing and afterwards find yourself thinking or saying those same words, then you need to eliminate that movie.
One thing that has really stuck with me that Jeff Baldwin taught were three key points. They are:
- Beauty and
If we apply this set of values to everything that we view around us, whether it be the newest, latest Marvel movie or the next novel that James Patterson releases, we will be viewing it through God’s standards.
For example, say that you go to the theatre with your friends and see the new Avengers: Endgame. If you see that movie without having these three values in your head, you come away from it feeling pumped up from all the action, sad from the deaths of the characters that I shall not name for the sake of those who have not seen it yet, your mind is filled with images of all of the violence and it’s just another movie.
Now, I’m not putting Marvel down or anything; I’m merely using this as an example, so please, none of you Marvel fans get upset at me for saying any of this.
So now we are going to pretend that we went to the theatre with these three values in our head. Instead of watching the movie for the storyline, we are watching the movie for the storyline AND we are watching it for its values. If you watch it with these values in mind, you come away from the movie realizing this:
- Truth – All things come to an end
- Beauty – The need for relationships in life
- Goodness – Selflessness
See how much different the movie suddenly appears, rather than saying that it’s Sad, Violent and Exciting?
Now, please realize that I am not saying that you can get positive results with whatever you’d like. For instance, take the film Gladiator, starring Russel Crowe, as an example. This movie is filled with action, excitement and lots and LOTS of violence – there’s a reason why it’s rated R. From what I can tell, this movie does not have anything beautiful in it, unless you are somehow attracted to the sight of gruesome violence. Is there anything truthful about this film? Not that I could recall, after watching the film. And lastly, is there any goodness in it? Perhaps…At the end of the film, And so, I am going to automatically write off this film as something I shouldn’t be watching. It doesn’t have any of the attributes that please God and therefore, why bother filling my mind with it?
I was recently reading a novel that my mom had picked up for me. It was about a homicide detective and it kept me on the edge of my seat. I couldn’t get enough of the suspense and excitement and it made me want to read more. It was filled with numerous homicides, describing them in detail. Though it was disturbing, it was almost darkly addicting and I wanted more.
That is, until I realized what I was reading. Though this novel was written by a Christian author (and yes, after meeting him and hearing him talk, I do believe that he actually is a Christian, and doesn’t just say that he is.), it didn’t have many good qualities in it. I tried so hard to find the three values in it, but without avail. Even though the detective did eventually catch the bad guy (350+ pages later), there was so much darkness involved. People were slaughtered, the main character was filled with hatred and there was little mention of God. The few things that actually were good in the story were basically blackened out by all the evil that filled the book.
Some people might think that it’s totally fine to read murder mysteries and homicide novels. I’ll admit that I even enjoy them. However, just because something is fun to experience does NOT mean that it is okay.
Even though it was hard for me, I ended up deciding that I wasn’t going to read any more books by that author. I told myself that the next time someone gave me a homicide novel or murder mystery to read, to go through it cautiously. I didn’t want my mind to be filled with dark and evil things that I didn’t need to dwell on.
Sometimes we don’t have a choice to view these things. Our culture has surrounded us with so much of it already, that it seems that, no matter where we walk, darkness and evil are at every corner. However, we do have the freedom to choose a lot of things in life, so why don’t we use the choices that we have to choose pure and beautiful things to put into our minds?
Now, that doesn’t mean that we should never check on the news, but rather, we shouldn’t be obsessed with it, or dwell on it.
The more you dwell on something, the more it will become a part of you.
Well, I hope that this post has made all of you, my dear friends, think a little more about what you read and watch. It certainly has changed the things that I now view and read, some of which I am sad about, but which I know in my heart is the right thing to do. 😊