This is perhaps my all-time favorite video on YouTube. The three uber-nerds in the Australian comedy group Tripod can really sing. The live clip of their song "Gonna Make You Happy Tonight" makes me laugh every time I watch it.
It's funny because, for some couples, it's true. Some of you know exactly what this song is talking about. And while it's sort of funny, it's also very sad...especially for those who regularly experience this.
I can't count the number of times that I have heard from frustrated wives who complain that their husband's number one social and stress-relieving activity is playing on line video games. They feel that they come second to their husband's Halo friends. With this next generation of young married men who cut their teeth on X-Box, I'm afraid we're going to see this more and more.
While I have nothing against video games, I think that, when overused, they can become an unhealthy escape from real life. After all, it's much easier to get lost in a fantasy world than it is to make a meaningful connection with a real person. And you can't resolve the problems associated with building a marriage today by throwing a frag grenade into the room. Love relationships are slightly more nuanced than that. Mark Gungor has an amazing post on Breaking Free of the Matrix that amplifies wonderfully what I'm suggesting.
As Imperfect and Normal Families, the regular challenge for each of us is to set aside the things that detract from our marriage and family lives in order to focus on what is most important. God wants us to turn our hearts toward home. The enemy wants to keep us from that. So he puts a long list of potential distractions before us.
For some, it may be video games. For others, TV. For someone else, scrap-booking or Facebook or the work that gets brought home most nights. The list of potential distractions from our family lives is very, very long.
When will we realize that God made us to be relational beings and that other things will never fully satisfy us? Yes, relationships are very hard. But they offer us the ability to connect in powerful ways that our souls are looking for.
Would you be willing to ask God to show you if you are out of balance in how you spend your time? Are you willing to ask your spouse if they feel like they get the best of you and not your leftovers?
Let's not do something as foolish as trading intimate relationship for shallow entertainment. Let's not trade video games for sex. I mean, Call of Duty is cool and all...but really?