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Purpose: Special advice for refraining from lusts on our walks is adapted for safe viewing on the web. We give practical suggestions but focus on how to protect your eyes during sudden sexy sights.
Part 3 of 3.
Many of us face extra temptations walking by pools, swimming at beaches and enjoying other forms of recreation, but it will also happen in other parts of our lives. Wherever we encounter temptation to think sexually of a woman other than our wife, this situation becomes a challenge to our well-being. Our restrained lusts (which is where they should be) are begging to take control.
I would like to briefly apply these same principles to viewing web pages. Perhaps we could entitle this with our major theme, "How to redeem our surfing on the web." I will not review the above principles but in light of them highlight some specific advice.
We should first remember that there are some places one does not visit on the web. ￼If we cannot stay off sights filled with sensual figures and violent scenes (including movies), then we should avoid using a computer or movie theater altogether. This is not legalism.
Jesus said it is better to pluck out the eye than to allow it to drag you to hell.
"And if your right eye makes you stumble, tear it out, and
throw it from you; for it is better for you that one
of the parts of your body perish,
than for your whole body to be thrown into hell"
Be careful how others lure you into thinking it is okay to visit or watch certain things. You are personally responsible to guard what you watch. Learn to go different than the crowd and be content about missing those things. Learn to censor yourself. Google, for example, has a safesearch preference. Perhaps, though, you are responsible too for others.
As a parent, I also need to make some decisions as to what my children in my house must see and not see. I generally use my own standards. I cannot allow them to do what God has convicted me not to. I am even more careful and limit what they can do on a computer and even how much time they spend on a computer (30 minutes a day for games). They only can go to certain places on the web. Depending on maturity, I allow them to have an email address and have access to the web.
Let me share some certain precautions that I have personally found helpful. This is what I would like to speak about here in the context of the principles mentioned above.
A few days ago I was trying to learn some advice on making web pages by viewing a training movie. The movie itself was fine. Certain ads, however, were very sensual. I certainly would not allow myself to view them. Since they pop up unexpectedly, I needed to make an immediate decision.
Sometimes I refuse to watch the video. In that case, I would just quit the page. If it takes a long time to quit the page (forcing me to watch the video 4 seconds too long) because it is still loading other parts, I quit the web browser. I do not play games with such things.
By the way we should take available precautions such as using preferences on computers and programs to avoid sensual pictures and the like. Google images, for example, enable you to not view sensual pictures for the most part. I take advantage of these.
Protecting my view!They are so helpful to me and my family.
By the way, if a program has an option to filter for children, I automatically click it. This means I shouldn't watch it either!
There is no doubt that all of these sensual images should be removed from the web and other viewing places. Why should we say that a child should not watch them when an adult could? The standards are contradictory. If they are not good for my young teen, then I should wise up to my own counsel. Think through why one would think that a child should not watch them and then think if you do not also need this kind of protection.
There are other web pages, though, that are somewhat manageable much like the one or two immodestly dressed women lined up on the beach. In this case there appeared a banner up above the main viewing window with indecently dressed women. The offense seemed to be limited to one area so I quickly made a few decisions to censure what I saw.
The first thing I did was resize the window. This effectively cut off the right banner area. That worked for a while, but then the smart ad moved to the top of the screen. I could not resize this.
I then quickly made another web page. I made it about the same size of the offending banner and promptly covered up the uncovered women. This worked as long as I did not touch the original window for that would bring the whole window up front and the cover would go behind the offending banner. But since this was a movie, I could just watch the movie and not touch the window. I was protected.
If my attempts to quickly and effectively cover up those images are frustrated, then I just abort my attempts to read that article or watch the training video. I might be able to download and watch it safely from my own desktop but that is not always an option.
I never consider what I want to view or hear so important that I must cause my mind to view and desire those women that are not mine. This is God's will. This strong conviction helps me make quick and effective decisions. If you find yourself looking a bit too much or taking a bit too long making that other window, then quickly abort one's attempts to view that offending window.
Our purpose is to grow up in the Lord. If a site is too predictable in producing offending ads then avoid it altogether.
If a person is not careful about where he is walks, the joy of the walk might disappear. If a person is walking in a minefield, he is so focused on danger that he never can enjoy his walk. It takes time to train one's mind to rehearse the above thoughts in such regular way that he does not let a side point distract him from the truth and he falls.
On each of my two mile walks I typically run into 4 to 7 red zones. This gives me plenty of practice. It is also because of this I am so aware of how God in His loving grace protects me. But I need to be willing not to walk during 'peak' times and go back home if for some reason the beach was littered about with sexual temptation. I remember our family was going to go visit a nice Florida beach and eat something there with another family. Even though I was the guest, I had to speak to my host that we were unable to walk the beach. The beach was filled with immodestly dressed women.
Perhaps one day the thoughts will become so routine that I will not be so conscious of them. But I don't think so. The temptations are so visual and controlling. I have to fight the evil with the truth of God. On the positive side, I have found the Lord so gracious in enabling me to enjoy the beautiful scenery, my wife and Himself. He has even given me the way to maintain that joy.