Someone asked me recently, “What is God teaching you right now?” My almost-immediate response surprised me as I usually think through answers to those types of questions – maybe wanting to sound pious or mature. My answer exited my mouth before I even had time to think about it: “God has been working on teaching me what is important – loving Him and loving people and not worrying so much about my to-do list.”
I tell you this because I think that media month had EVERYTHING to do with this. Headed into media month, I was coming off some of the worst weeks of my life with intense stroke-like atypical migraines… every 4 days. During the “down days” we’ll call them, I had much time to spend with God. He showed up and reminded me of words that I needed to turn into action – like “be” and “abide,” like “grace” and “rest.” As much as my type A personality pushes against that, it was exactly the season I needed. Enter the inspiration to FINALLY read and do “Seven.” I knew this was what my life needed in this season.
During my “down days” I spent much time on Facebook and allowing movie stars to entertain me while I laid on the couch recovering, most faithful golden retriever by my side. When Jarred and I had to choose which month of “Seven” to begin with, media month was a no brainer for the girl who was so over screen time.
So it began… 28 days ago. It’s been a journey – one of peace, quiet, reconnecting, being, abiding, relating and praying. In so many ways, it’s changed us. We may be more present, more likely to pick up the phone, more apt to want to hang out, more excited about going for walks and more in touch. A $12 book can’t buy you that, but a sacrificial experience in your faith journey can do that. We are so grateful – so much so that we want the remnants media month to be ingrained into the fabric of our home.
We have decided that our family will celebrate Sabbath once a week – probably on Mondays – our Sabbath will be media-free. So no media Mondays will be happening in our house. We will laugh, we will talk, we will cry if we need to, we will be together. One night a week will also be media-free. We don’t like the habit of coming home from work just to open computers and not be present. While we learned that sometimes we need to decompress by reading blogs, news, etc., it does not need to happen every night. So one night a week will be set aside for quiet, for connecting, for family. We want this to be a pattern in our house so that when kids come they know that’s just what “we do” and we want them to value it as well.
Jen says this: “Perhaps this is why Scripture calls us to the practice of fasting – from food, from greed, from selfishness, from luxuries. It isn’t just the experience; it’s the discipline. It changes us. Fasting helps us develop mastery over the competing voices in our heads that urge us toward more, toward indulgence, toward emotional volatility.” - pg. 219
Media month did just that for us –it taught us discipline and it has changed us. We recognized that being unplugged warred against the competing voices in our heads saying, “Go read this blog. You HAVE to see what so and so posted on Instagram today. You have 17 Facebook notifications and 30 emails – they must be attended to immediately, especially the ones about Farmville and Male Enhancement ;).” But seriously, it’s so good for your soul, your marriage, your friendships and your busy mind to shut down and just “be.” God asks that of us a few times and the more you practice it, the easier it gets. Discipline changes us.
We love “Seven” – we want more. We are coming to believe that sacrificial living for the purpose of teaching ourselves what we don’t need and learning to depend on Jesus is important. Not only that; it’s scriptural and it’s transforming. We are stoked for month two, which will be… FOOD MONTH! More details to come with a start date of October 9. Thanks for joining us on the journey.