My favorite reality shows are The Bachelor, Bachorlette, American Idol, X-Factor and The Voice. I must admit that I have also watched some of the Housewives shows, Love & Hip Hop and the Kardashians. I don’t know why. Probably just to see what the hype was all about. But like the rest of the world, it’s become a habit or (wait for it) an addiction!
I never thought I had an addiction to anything! I don’t do the things that most people find addicting. We all have some sort of habit that we may be accustomed to doing, but nothing that would consume me. Well, I was wrong…
Here are 5 reasons why you and I are addicted to reality tv and how to change from our wicked ways:
→No actors, real people. We like the fact that we are not looking at actors, but people who are just like us! You may look like them, act like them and in some sense become them. OMG you are them!
→We can relate. We see ourselves in them. When they say something, you get it, because it’s exactly what you thought or felt. It may be a breath of fresh air that someone else is going through the same problems in their marriage, with their kids, or at work. They may be dealing with insecurities with themselves, weight issues, eating disorders and self esteem. When they get angry they lash out and fight their enemies. You may or may not react that way, but you may understand why. And again they are relateable to your life at the time.
→It’s interactive. I like the fact that I can vote, not vote or give my opinion on the contestants of some of these shows. With the singing competitions, you get a chance to voice your opinions on who you think can or cannot sing. You can look at their backgrounds that’s provided and determine if they are worthy enough to win or lose. In some ways, you may feel that you have control over their lives and destinies…
→We get pleasure from other people’s failures. Let’s face it, we get a kick out of seeing other people do worst than us. You may feel that when you are going through hard, difficult times that you are alone. But when you look at the desperate women competing for one man’s affection on the Bachelor, someone being voted off and feeling like their dreams have been shattered on a singing, cooking or design competition or Kim Kardashian’s public divorce, you don’t feel so bad. There’s always someone else worse off than you!
→And lastly, we love Drama! All of the above examples, sums it up and are all forms of drama. If you are bored with your life and live the same routine day in and day out, you look to others for excitement. These characters (and they have become characters) may fill a void in your life, that you haven’t figured out how to fill yet. They fight, bicker, cry, complain and live out lives that create chaos. Pure drama queens and kings! And if there’s no drama, you are not interested… If you are a Christian or not, you may have forgotten that these are ordinary people – just like you- who have issues – just like you – that are televised, instead of private. Now the “reality drama” has replaced the “soap opera drama” back in the day…
So now that we have addressed the reasons for our addiction, we must change…
The lure of reality tv is surrounded by fantasy. We are excited and lured in at the thought that these people are like us and are not actors. They share all of their intimate details with us and let us into their world.
This recommended affiliate book, Reality Bites Back: The Troubling Truth About Guilty Pleasure TV written by media critic, Jennifer L. Pozner, says “Nearly every night on every major network, “unscripted” (but carefully crafted) “reality” TV shows routinely glorify retrograde stereotypes that most people would assume got left behind 35 years ago.” Jennifer L. Pozner aims a critical, analytical lens at a trend most people dismiss as harmless fluff.
As Christians, we know that nothing or no one should come before God. It can be looked as a form of idolatry, because it takes our thoughts off of God and onto this fantasy world that belongs to Satan. Hosea 4:12 says, “My people consult a wooden idol, and a diviner’s rod speaks to them. A spirit of prostitution leads them astray; they are unfaithful to their God.” God knows that Satan’s world has a pull on us through the media. What we watch on television and in the movies can and will take our minds and spirits off of God.
We can become enslaved to what becomes our masters. 2 Peter 2:19 says, “While they promise them liberty, they themselves are slaves of corruption; for by whom a person is overcome, by him also he is brought into bondage.” We are indeed creatures of habit. And when you like something or can relate to something, you may feel that it becomes a part of you – good or bad- just like a slave. For 2 Peter 2:22 also says,“But it has happened to them according to the true proverb: “A dog returns to his own vomit, and, “a son, having washed, to her wallowing in the mire.” Sad – but true.
In order to be better, we must do better. I’m not saying that you can’t watch television or even some of these shows. But I am saying that they can’t consume your life! Why have we forgotten God in all of this?
We have allowed other people’s lives to overshadow our Christian duties. We have allowed their negativity to become our negativity. We have allowed drama to become our norm.
I’m grateful for BET’s gospel singing competition, Sunday’s Best, but why haven’t we created another reality show based on Godly values? Why not show how Christian people live on a daily basis? Because there’s no drama involved… or is it? Sure there’s drama in EVERYONE’S life! We make mistakes. But it’s how we handle the drama that makes all the difference…
You must remember to keep God first in everything you do. God is the only One to fill your voids. He creates the excitement that you are looking for! When you have bad times, you must thank God for them, because they are all learning lessons. When you have a testimony that will help others, you must share, so their lives will improve and not fail. And when you are going through turmoil with your loved ones, you must take it to God (and not your neighbor), because only God can keep secrets…
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