Dangerous Distractions

Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers; but his delight is in the law of the LORD, and on His law he meditates day and night.”

Psalm 1:1–2 (ESV)

Were you shocked when your spouse left? Were you left bewildered and dumbfounded after hearing your spouse say they didn’t love you anymore and wanted out of the marriage? If you were like me, I had literally no idea of the precarious condition my marriage was in until the day it suddenly fell apart. To say I was blindsided, was an understatement. 

Had I been in God’s will and applying Biblical discernment to the spheres of my life that needed it most, I would likely have been more aware of the imminent danger. Unfortunately, due to my pride and arrogance, I had allowed blinders to blur my focus. This prevented me from seeing the warning signs all around. Unfortunately, my personal experience is not unique. So many we hear from have admitted to dropping the ball and not prioritizing the spiritual health of themselves or their family. Coming to this realization usually arrives only after the destruction of the marriage is well underway. But it doesn’t have to be like this.

When we allow ourselves to be consumed with “non-kingdom” influences and place the investment in our relationship with Christ on the back-burner, we play a risky game. In this day and age, the traps and snares of the devil are everywhere. Men, do you spend countless hours watching TV or checking your phones for the latest news on your favorite sports team? Are you wasting your time binge watching Netflix for hours on end? Or how about filling your head with garbage content from TikTok that you’d be ashamed to view in the presence of children? Ladies, are you constantly checking your Facebook and Instagram feeds? Is your emotional mood determined by the number of likes, comments, and reposts? If so, you are in way too deep.

Truth be told, these distractions and social obsessions have done more to erode the spiritual condition of our hearts than we ever thought possible. Our preoccupation with the digital world, social media, and 24/7 access to entertainment has left us spiritually empty and hollow. Our saturated minds have become void of the very knowledge that should prevent our hearts from growing cold, calloused and incapable of discerning the voice of the Holy Spirit.

I’m not laying blame solely at the feet of the social media giants or the entertainment and sports industries. These distractions and obsessions only cause damage because we allow them to. We purposely consume and willingly participate in activities that have become addictions. It’s a safe bet that a majority of us would lose sleep over being denied access to social media accounts, but wouldn’t bat an eye if we lost or misplaced our Bibles. These days, Christians constantly sacrifice the things of God for temporal pleasure and worldly desires. Over the course of a lifetime, these departures from the faith will take their toll.

Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world—the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride of life is not from the Father but is from the world. And the world is passing away along with its desires, but whoever does the will of God abides forever.”

I John 2:15-17

When we know who is “trending” on Twitter, or are aware of the latest The Voice contestant to just be eliminated, but can’t remember anything about what we heard in church last Sunday, then our priorities are out of alignment. And therein lies the hidden danger. The enemy keeps us from protecting our homes and families by distracting us with a continuous onslaught of trivial pursuits. It’s a proven strategy.

Our investment in culture, instead of the Word of God, and a pursuit of righteousness, has left many of us ignorant and unprepared to face spiritual battles that come our way. As followers of Christ, it comes down to obedience, and we all need to submit. 

If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God.”

Colossians 3:1-3

Before you find yourself in the midst of a marriage crisis, take time to evaluate your own life, and ask if the investments currently being made strengthen the marriage bond or cause it to become weaker. If it’s the latter, then change course while you still have the chance. To delay is foolishness, and a move that will only lead to regret.

In Christ,

Tommy Larson