This weekend I ended up seeing the movie “The Gamer.” (Warning: “The Gamer” has very gratuitous violence and sexual content. It is highly offensive. I strongly urge people not to see this movie.) Being in Las Vegas and trying to avoid all things sinful, my travel group figured viewing a movie would be harmless. We were mistaken.
Admittedly, our group was somewhat confused about the plot of the movie. Some of us mistakenly thought “The Gamer” was actually the movie “Shorts”. Some of us thought the movie was a combination of the two movies. Thinking the very best, we all handed over our money, took our seats and were prepared to watch something entertaining, fun and most importantly, wholesome. We were in for a shock.
The storyline in “The Gamer” was futuristic. It involved individuals playing video games, but instead of controlling a fictional character, they controlled real live humans. One game allowed people to “play” death row inmates in a war-style game. If their “player” made it past 30 games, they were pardoned and let free. The violence in this movie was astoundingly graphic. The dialogue consisted of a string of four-letter words. There was much more to the storyline, but most of it was obscenely graphic and to recount it would be in poor taste.
“The Gamer” was so violent, sexually oriented and offensive that I had to leave the movie theatre halfway through the showing. There were kids in our group, some under the age of 10, who had to leave as well. I encouraged others who felt as offended as I did to leave and to my amazement the whole travel group got up and walked out.
I have friends who do not follow Christ (if they do know him), or they have never really been exposed to Christ in a profound way to know and follow his Word. As Christians, we are encouraged not to fellowship with unbelievers. However, at one point all Christians were unbelievers, and it took the love and prayer of a believer to open our eyes to the love of Christ. In that regard, continuing a friendship with some people I knew before I was saved is a way to witness the grace, love and salvation of Christ. But, I digress.
Walking out of that movie was a small victory. It felt great that others followed their conscience and left also. Some of the people who left are some of my unsaved friends. Explaining to them why it is important to guard your mind from the messages of the world was an awesome way to share the love of Christ with them.
God gives us opportunities to use what is meant for our harm to his advantage. We could have stayed in that movie and absorbed the violence and sexual content. We could have allowed our children to be introduced to a level of sin that they should not ever have to experience. Instead, God used that time to showcase why it is essential to be vigilant in guarding one’s mind in a world filled with sin.
What everyday events in your life can you use to witness to others? How can Christians do a better job of guarding their hearts and minds against the sin of the world, without becoming reclusive and exclusive in our faith? And, what lessons can we learn when we fail to properly guard ourselves from worldly influences?