Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Turned Off For the Glory of God: Update

Last month I posted about my goals for 2012, but I also shared with you my hearts desire to be more intentional, to seek more opportunities to grow in Christ, to use my evenings more wisely, and to get up before the sun in order to work on a project I believe the Lord wants to see me bring to completion. In order to accomplish these things, I felt prompted by the Lord, convicted, to keep my Television Turned Off for the Glory of the Lord.

I just reread the post, and let me tell you, I feel convicted all over again. I've had to take my own advice, again, and now I feel refreshed, ready to make my journey more concrete, share my pitfalls, learn from them, and move forward. 

So, how did I do? I did pretty well, my attachment to my shows has decreased significantly. Even the shows I DVR and watch on the weekends are having less of a pull on me. After about the first week, I stopped having the desire to cheat or watch something on my computer during a different part of the day. Early on, I noticed how much more time I had with the TV off. I was able to get the kitchen cleaned, laundry caught up, reignited my love for reading (or rather, just devoted time to my love for reading), and even managed to get to bed at a reasonable hour. 

So I did pretty well with keeping the TV off, and detaching myself from that permanent state of couch-potato-itis I seemed to be living in. But how did I do with the other part of my goal, the getting up before the sun, reading daily and progressing on my project? As I used to say in Spanish class, "Asi-asi" Okay-okay. I did manage to get up before the family and have some quality reading and prayer time almost every day, but was not physically able to get up before the sun on several occasions due to being sick, healing and work trips etc. I'm proud of myself for managing to maintain a steady reading schedule, and did, as I say, get up before the sun on several occasions but somehow I didn't manage to make even an ounce of progress on my project, for that I'm disappointed.

The out-of-my-control circumstances that prevented me from getting up to "work" early on several occasions produced a few grey areas in my goal. Was I only cutting out TV on the nights before I intended to get up early? Or was I committing to do this long term to increase my creativity and relationship with the Lord? 

There were a few nights where the first question persuaded me to watch an hour of TV or two. But ultimately I've decided it's the second question that prevails. The ambiguity was partly increased by the indecisive end to this pursuit. So this month has taught me to be very specific, and has helped me to discover where I need to improve. 

  • I'm officially committing to not watch TV during the week throughout the rest of 2013
  • Beginning at 6PM on Sundays, ending at 6PM on Fridays
  • Irregardless of whether or not I'll be waking up before the sun
  • In an effort to "cleanse the pallet" and increase my creativity and productivity
  • In an effort to increase my understanding of and devotion to my Lord

  • The one exception to the rule will be for sick days/vacations

  • Also, phase one of my project needs to be completed by June 1st. No exceptions. 
Now, I know I've harped on a lot of the failures here, but I have learned so much this last month. It's freeing to not feel pressure of when my shows start during the boys bedtime routine. I admit that far too often I'd get grumpier than needed because I was anxious not to miss a single second of juicy drama. I've learned a lot from the 2 free kindle novels I downloaded. My husband and I spent more time discussing deeper issues than we regularly do. I had at least 10 hours of sleep on more than 5 occasions. Most importantly, because my time in the Word is more focused, and I've had more of it, my prayers are becoming deeper and less rehearsed. The Lord is revealing to me many things about myself and my circumstances that He wants to use. 

So, is it worth is? Absolutely. 

I'm excited to carry on. Especially now that my purpose, rules, exception, and goal has been cemented in blog-stone. 

One of the bloggers/authors that I just recently began following, Lindsey Harrel from The Mustard Seed,  posted on this same topic today, see why she's cutting TV and movies out for the whole month of February. 

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