“When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things.” 1 Corinthians 13:11
Here is a newsflash about our world that I noted at the heading of an online article. “More than 2.5 Billion video games have been sold worldwide…for millions of kids and young adults playing video games has become an obsession.” I fear that America, and even our whole world, has become addicted to a children’s toy!
Recently, I was asked to pick up a teenage young man and take him to school. I picked him up and began to drive across town to his school. Shortly after we began our brief drive, he began to wail and cry as if someone had just died in his family. I slowed down and asked him what was ailing him. I was shocked to find that the only problem was that he had forgotten to pack his video game in his back pack. Sadly, this young generation cannot even take a short trip across town without having their eyes glued to a screen and their thumbs hastily pressing a variation of buttons. Our society is addicted!
I recently saw a report that stated, “23% say that they have felt addicted to video games.” The report goes on to say that the average teenager plays video games for about 14 hours a week. Another report suggests that our modern teenagers spend 7½ hours a day in front of a screen, either watching TV or playing video games, social media and simply texting. This is yet another sign that our youth (and many adults) have become addicted to this electronic age and unfortunately much of the vileness that comes with it.
One may ask why these statistics concern me. These statistics concern me for two main reasons. First of all, we have gotten to the point where we let a screen do all of our thinking for us. Our young people no longer have any kind of an imagination, nor do they really have the ability to sit and think. Secondly, I think it is a shame that people who are drawing so close to adulthood are so consumed with toys.
I realize that I am writing to a very sharp group of young people, many of which are growing up in good godly homes. I am not trying to say it is completely wrong to watch TV, text or play video games (though it all depends on the content). What I am trying to say is that we should not be addicted to it. As we grow older we should be spending less time with a controller in our hand and not more. Young person, please do not be so concerned with always having to be entertained. Learn to use the imagination God has given you, use the mind God gave you to stop and think about life and where you are going. If you would do this you might be able to say as did Paul, “When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things.” DON’T BE ADDICTED!
“Give me 100 preachers who fear nothing but sin and desire nothing but God; such alone will shake the gates of hell.” -John Wesley