Friday, November 19, 2010

Pruned

So, Curtis and I pretty much ditched The Precious (our TV). Can you believe it? Sometimes I can't either. You can read about our recent experience with God's pruning shears here on my friend Lindsey Nobles' blog.

Lindsey and I met on the Compassion Guatemala trip. I've loved getting to know her this year. And now we are bonded for life whether she likes it or not! ;) Thanks, Lindsey, for letting me share my story.

Be sure to check out the giveaway I posted last night for Those Silly Sisters: Swimming in the Rain. The comments have been so fun!

34 comments:

bethany said...

Loved your post Amanda-everyone should evaluate their TV watching like this. I commented over there :)

Gene and Annie said...

I loved the post as well!! God actually convicted me of this about a year ago and it took me a few months to get on board!! I have seen so many rewards already!! Like you, I have read so many good books, my husband and i seem to have more time to really talk!! It's been good!! I thought I would miss it like crazy and there are times where I do but for the most part I dont'!! Thanks for sharing!!

Lindsey Nobles said...

So thankful for you. Can't wait to see you in TWO WEEKS!

You really have me thinking about cutting out my cable. I will circle back and let you know where I land...

Nicole said...

Thanks for your words. A bunch of years ago I felt called to give up TV for lent. It was shortly after I spent half an hour in a strange position holding the TV antenna so I could finish watching a show! After lent, we ended up cutting it out altogether. Although it took discipline, we have found the same as you, we didn't miss it like we thought we would and found much more meaningful replacements. Just last November, we signed up for basic TV again and have found it to be much easier to choose well or not at all.

Carrie said...

My husband and I also recently got rid of our tv. We have a 2-year-old at home and it got so bad that I was stressing over the sexual content on commercials!!! Heaven help, finally my husband said, "How much are we paying?" And when I said $80/month. We decided we could save that money and just get rid of our TV and to be honest...I haven't really missed it! We've spent a lot more time playing with our sweet girl and talking to each other. (Imagine that :)

The Timberlake Family said...

Amanda, several months ago, we too were convicted about TV watching. It really hit me when I would find my 18 month old glued to the TV any time it was on and when she would walk straight to the TV first thing in the morning and turn it on herself. Last month, we finally canceled the cable (we can't get regular channels, either) and we have seen huge rewards. More family time is the best one!

Lissa said...

This was a great post. My husband and I were convicted about 5 years ago about the things we were allowing ourselves to watch and we realized how much we were justifying. So we got rid of our TV. Neither one of us regrets the decision. Not that we feel TV is evil, we, like you, were weak in this area and it was the best decision for our family. The kids are still able to watch things now and then on the computer and none of us feel like we are being deprived of anything...not anything worthwhile anyway!

Melody Joy King said...

Hi Amanda,
I don't think I have ever commented on your blog before, but for the last month or so, I've read every post. My husband Justin and I recently got rid of our tv as well, and it has been so freeing! I like you, have been amazed by how little I've actually missed it! I am thoroughly enjoying the increase in quality time my husband and I have spent together as a result. Your posts never cease to make me smile or laugh and are often quite thought provoking as well. Many blessings to you and yours this Thanksgiving and thanks for blogging. :0) ~ Melody Joy

lavonda said...

I wish we were strong enough to do that. Just don't think we are. We don't watch it much, but I so enjoy the Weather Channel and whatever's on late at night when I crawl into bed and can't go to sleep yet (especially the Christmas movies).

But girl, I have to tell you, Grey's Anatomy is dead to me now. I used to love that show, but it's off the chain now. Too Much.

On another note, I thought of you the other day when my husband came home from his first trip to London -- he brought me two GIANT boxes of English teas!! I love hot tea, and thought it was so sweet that he thought to get me some from over there. I can't wait to try them all!

Peter and Nancy said...

I love to read, and can become a bad mama when I'm hooked into a good book. A few years ago, I felt like God was asking me to give up reading fiction for a time, because, honestly, it was cutting out time reading the Bible. So I stopped reading fiction, thinking God will surely make His point in a month or so . . . but it ended up being seven months!! I hadn't gone that long without reading a novel since I could read one. It was a great time of learning for me, and then it seemed God gave me the green light again to read in moderation, when I wasn't using it to escape real life.

I hope this season reaps great benefits for you!
Nancy

Tara G. said...

My then fiancee suggested that we get rid of ours so we could go into marriage TV-less. I was skeptical, but went along with it. It's been 10 years and 22 days and we don't miss it. So many benefits!

Kristen said...

that's awesome Amanda! i have felt that way MANY times after watching a tv show. ugh. i don't like how it steals time away from really being with eachother..our family. i remember being over at brother john and uldine's house one day and she told me how they sit on the sofa each night, holding hands, talking about their days, life, everything...her simple mention of that really convicted me and made me long for that time of connection with the hubs. anyways, long post...but loved it friend!

Sarah said...

Great post! Thank you for sharing.

Toknowhim said...

Amanda...

I know I say this a lot, but this is the best post (the "Pruned" one) you have ever written... Probably because I can relate to your struggle with TV.

The Lord has had me on a journey for about 10 years now with the whole entertainment scene in general... I have had much freedom in this area, but I still feel there is more pruning to be done. I am thinking it will look very much like what he has done in your family :) I totally relate when you said that you are weak in this area, and that is why it had to go...

Blessings to you as the Holy Spirit moves more freely in your life.

Kim

Karen Campbell said...

Pruned-loved your post!!! I was getting ready for work this morning and thinking about how the TV takes away from my time with God. Wow. I have some thinking and changing to do today. Thank you for writing this. I want to be fully engaged in my life and others! I find myself not really being "all there" when I am in the room with someone.

Shellie Paparazzo said...

Haha! For a second I thought you were going to tell me you spent too long in the bath and had wrinkles! That's what I think of when I think of pruned! I'm weird! You'll have to forgive me! Haven't watched tv, not even hulu for months. I'm much happier. Think it was bad for my depression.

pvploeg said...

I felt really convicted as I watched certain shows and realized, "I'm choosing to be entertained by people delighting in the sin that Jesus died for." We got rid of TV service (still use the actual TV for internet streaming thru a Roku box - similar to what you can do on a Wii). As our girls get older (four of them!), we see that what's available on TV for them is pretty awful (not always morally bad, just stupid and mindless), so we have a good bit more control now, and we do not miss commercials, especially with Christmas approaching. My husband has even been able to set the computer to not allow the streaming option except during certain hours of the day. We can still choose to have too much "screen time," so it's not a perfect solution, but it has helped a ton. Thanks for sharing how your family is dealing with this issue, and for reminding us all that every aspect of our lives- including TV habits - is reflective of how we are abiding in Christ and surrendering to Him. Love your blog and so appreciate LPM!

Heather - On the Road... said...

Ok. This is getting a bit crazy!

God has been speaking to my heart about slowing down. He has physically been slowing me down the past few weeks.... Though illnesses, or accidents - like stitches in chins (mine not either of my kids...) strep throat (again, the hubby and me, not the kids)

I think that I need to start making my list for the weekend be HIS list. I am starting to do that at work, and am starting to be able to let some things go now. I guess I had better listen at home too, rather than make Him slow me down Himself!!

This is at least the second or third post I have read about cutting things out of life, pruning, cutting back, sitting still, listening to God, etc.

You think He is trying to say something?!

Thank you!
Heather

Erica said...

I loved this post! We have done the same thing at different seasons in our marriage. It is so refreshing to not feel "gross" after watching something on tv. I do believe it is one of the ways satan desensitizes us to sin. Thank you for casting a light on the topic!

heather said...

Wow girl. I wonder if we had the same favorite show? I had the same encounter recently and I too make excuses and feel awful the next day saying I will do better. I see our family all over this and my 7 year old son is totally taking up our bad habits- always looking forward to "veging" in front of the tv. I also am the worlds biggest Duke girl fan!!! They are going to be fun to watch this year so yes you guys will have to figure something out :)
Seriously though- you have inspired me to take some big steps with my family and see what we are truly missing out on- thanks so much for sharing.

Gregory said...

Amanda, you will continue to be so blessed by your decision. we have seen the fruit in our children's lives by getting rid of the TV!
Blessings,
Amanda

Susan T-V said...

Great post!! Just wanted to share our experience. We stopped watching TV several years ago as we were similarly convicted. Last year we decided to get cable to watch some sporting events. I was so tenative because I didn't want to slip into any kind of a pattern. What we found is that we were so intolerant of most shows and commercials that it hasn't been an issue at all. If I feel like vegging out, I turn on HGTV, Food Network or History - but that only happens every 2-3 weeks. Your obedience will be rewarded sister!!

tiggerdaisy said...

You have spoken the very words that have been written across the walls of my heart here lately. Hopefully, my husband will agree with me! :)

Prayers and blessings to you as you travel this new path!

Rebecca

Joanne@ Blessed... said...

Amanda,

Congratulations! TV can be an addiction-It was my drug of choice for years.

Me and our family are over two years clean and sober from it ourselves. We chucked our TV and haven't looked back. (Though it was difficult breaking the news to Paula Deen.)

I can't tell you how much it encourages me to read your post. I have a heart for young moms like yourself and it inspires me to no end!

There is never a sacrifice for the Lord without a blessing in return. Time with your family is an investment that will reap a lifetime of dividends.

Mommy Dot Com said...

Amanda, I can so relate to this post. I have cycled in and out of conviction so many times. The first time God ever REALLY convicted me of what I watched I was frightened b/c I felt so weak to turn from something that seemed so harmless. I asked God for the ultimate grace of removing it from my life for me if it truly was hindering me in any way (I asked this b/c I wasn't convinced what I watched made that much of a difference, what I watched seemed so harmless on so many levels). Do you know the next day we awoke to a TV that had nothing but a green screen. The next day, Amanda! But you know what? We were FREE! And it felt sooo good. No more TV b/c our only TV broke and we truly felt it was the Lord removing it from our lives so we didn't get another one.

The results were terrific. The Holy Spirit was empowered to truly take control in us in ways I didn't realize I needed. BUT then we moved and the family we bought a house from left the TV that fit "just right" above the fireplace.

That's when the cycle began and we didn't even have cable. We rented movies and there's enough bad ones out there to stumble over them again and again - so the cycle began. I don't want to sound legalistic b/c I know most of my friends have great self-control about what they watch but I feel like I get sucked in.

I truly admire the stand you two took and I pray that God uses this fast to usher in His Spirit and power into the lives of each member of your household. How wise it is to remove the detestable idols so His favor will flow in. God always moved in powerful ways each time the Israelites cleared their land of the high places. The pure in heart will see God.

Pray we'll all do the same in any area we need to make changes. The Spirit is willing but the flesh is weak.

Amanda said...

We gave up cable almost two years ago, and I was nervous but ended up LOVING it. We had a very small antenna that picked up the few we needed. When we moved back to Oklahoma, the only way to get ABC/NBC/CBS channels was to get basic cable, and with all of the weather issues in Oklahoma (tornadoes/ ice storms) we at least needed one of those for news. We got 20 channels, and what was one of those channels? MTV. I hated that we were back to the mercy of our cable. Just this last weekend, the hubby found a very large antenna that got through all of our trees, so today is our first official day without cable. It finally feels like home again! Game days are hard, but we often invite ourselves over to friends with the promise of lots of treats. :) Even better, we are getting a new Compassion child with the money we are saving!

erin said...

Wonderful post! We've done the same thing, only not completely. We only watch football on the weekends, so once that is over, the TV pretty much remains off, and we have never had cable.

Isn't it amazing how desensitized we become to what we watch and allow into our minds? I've found that since weaning off of TV, I am much more sensitive to what I DO see now. I am so thankful for the Holy Spirit working to let me see the difference between what is holy and uplifting and what is not.

Thanks for sharing your experience!!

Blessings,
Erin

Carrie Beth said...

Amanda -
As always, thank you for sharing parts of your life and for being so transparent! I wonder if we watch the same show? I have been thoroughly disgusted time and again by a particular show. I rant about it to friends and my husband and yet, the next Thursday evening, I find myself plopped down in front of the same show again. I am convinced at least one network is on a mission to completely desensitize America to certain choices!!
Thank you for sharing your convictions. I have wondered repeatedly about getting rid of cable in our home. I love certain sports and news channels, but could probably watch those occasionally online.
Your post definitely convicts me to examine this topic more deeply. I know it is very easy to "veg" out and not connect to my husband and kids at night, especially. I definitely don't want to look back on my life and realize I wasted valuable time with my family on smut!

Elizabeth Brown said...

hi amanda!
this post really encouraged me! my husband and i cut the plug on our cable 3 years ago and have been so blessed by it! having 2 little ones now, i often wonder if we should go back to it (partly for my sanity?!). but the Lord always reminds me of all the fruit He has brought forth since then. may God bless you too in this!

JayCee said...

I am so happy to hear somebody else say this! The Lord convicted us of this a year or so ago. We haven't even missed watching TV. You will be blessed.

katiegfromtennessee said...

Hey Amanda, I've battled with the tv factor too. I went through a time where I knew that I wasn't supposed to watch any of it. Nothing. It did prove to be of my immense benefit to not watch it. Then, as I've felt like it's ok to watch something, I do. Now, though, I mostly just keep the tv off during the day until my husband comes home and turns it on. I try to find things to watch that aren't offensive, but even comercials nowadays can blindside you with blatant immorality. I even had to lay off the food channel recently because I was beginning to have an inordinate desire for food moreso than what should be normal. Sigh. I have found that reading is best, especially the Bible. Imagine that, reading the Bible instead of watching tv, right?:) Bless you both for seeking out the Lord's best for you. Keep being in tune with that Spirit. He's working in me with tv too, and I'm blessed for it. He'll lead you right;)

Shelli Littleton said...

That is pretty incredible, Amanda! I got so tickled hearing you call your TV "The Precious" ... so funny! Hats off to you ... my husband would probably die over without Fox News!

La Dolce Vita: The Sweet Life said...

Loved this post. God is doing some pruning in our lives as well. Thanks for sharing.

The Bargain Shopper Lady said...

I loved reading this post. We have not had a tv for three years and love it! My husband goes to his dad's house for important games, (and it usually ends up being after the kids are asleep which gives me great reading time!) My struggle is with the internet. The Lord has asked me to be on a schedule of one hour each day at night after the kids go to bed. I struggle with feeling so "abnormal" and away from all my friends. I struggle with feeling that "Everyone else can use the internet!" It's helped me to learn to be disciplined, but it's not easy by any means.