I've challenged myself to a (mostly) No TV November. Harper gets to watch Dora or the occasional movie, still, and I get to watch Parenthood on Fridays (because I just need to) and have a football game or two on over the weekend (again, because I need to); but naps times, night times, down times, they are all quiet right now. And friends, it has been awesome.
This little challenge was not a legalistic stance on the moral decay of television, even though there is probably plenty to say about that and the influences I have been letting in to our home. Rather, it has simply been about two things: I want to listen for the Holy Spirit, and I was not always making the space to do it; and I want to read, because books are like friends to me, and with two little ones finding reading minutes is hard enough, I needed to do something drastic to make the choice an easy one for me. It has been just about three weeks with no Today Show, no nap time TLC shows, no evening Voice episodes. Instead, is has been sermons on in the background while I fold laundry, two (!!) finished books in three weeks (have you read Unbroken? Because you need to, right now!), and a little more time spent being intentional with my hobbies, my dreams, and my home.
There is something really beautiful and peaceful about the quiet. I haven't had a spiritual awakening or a monumental prophecy delivered to me, but I've just relished the space to simply be when there is no noise to numb that. It has felt like the Holy Spirit is a little more welcome in our home when there is not quite as much of a fight for attention, and that's really want I want in the end.
So come December, the challenge to myself will be over, but I don't think the tv will come on quite as much. Peter tells us in his second letter that we would do well to pay attention to God's word like a lamp shining in a dark place (2:19). For me, I'm just not good at paying attention to other things when Real Housewives is on, and I want to choose the better thing with my days. A sweet, sweet writer said once that "I am responsible for the things I allow into my heart and mind." That thought stayed with me: If I get to choose much of what goes in, and if I want to live bravely, I better fill my life with the kinds of things I will need in a dark place.