The Women Living Well Book Club – Chapter 4

Book Club header week 2 chapter 4

Welcome back to the Women Living Well Book Club!

Here’s the links from past posts:
The Weekly Reading Schedule
Chapter 1
Chapters 2&3
“Your Walk With God” webcast & Extra Resources

Let’s Discuss Chapter 4

The world is changing rapidly. It’s amazing for me to consider that my kids have no idea what a typewriter or word processor looks like.  They simply don’t know a world without tiny devices that both entertain and answer all their questions.

Changes from the Media Revolution

 

Our kids are not familiar with those thick JC Penney Catalogs or record players or phones attached to walls.  Remember when we had to purchase film for our cameras…and flashes!  Then we waited 7 days for the pictures to develop and half the pictures were of people with their eyes closed!  My kids can snap 100 pictures in an hour on their iPods, crop, twist and turn them and have them printed on our printer in 2 seconds flat.

The onslaught of the media revolution has changed the landscape of our lives.  So, we must ask the question – how has this affected our walk with God?

I make clear in chapter 4 that media is amoral.  In and of itself, it is neither good nor evil.  It is our use of it, that determines its morality.  Each believer must discern and follow their own convictions

“Jesus lived in a different culture and context than we do.  Never before have women carried access to ALL the world’s knowledge on a tiny device in our purses!”  pg. 36

And this is where the danger lies.  I admit in the book that I struggle with being an information glutton.  As I hop from blog to blog, and Facebook to Twitter – I tend to gather more information than I can process or use and all this information crowds out the voice of God in my life.

Information is a cheap substitute

 

Let’s Discuss:

Below this video are our discussion questions for the comment section – please share your answers and thoughts there.

Here’s a 4 minute video of my answers!

(if you cannot see this video - click here)

1.)  Pause for a moment and list all the media you currently use in a week.  Now consider and sort through it, which of the media draws you closer to God and which of the media pulls you away from God.

2.)  God has not called His children to seek information; He calls us to seek Him.  Read Read Matthew 6:33 and Hebrews 11:6 {again} what are we to be seeking?

For Extra Discussion go to the Forum and click on the thread that says “Chapters 4″.

Walk with the King,

Courtney

Comments

  1. says

    All media can draw me closer to the Lord. I listen to amazing sermons on TV, radio, and the Internet. They can all draw me away from the Lord, howver, if I watch or listen to the world’s garbage which is easy to do since it is almost everywhere. This is why we must purposely and earnestly seek Him!

  2. Adriana says

    1.) I have a Facebook account, Instagram account, Pinterest account, and watch religious inspired videos on Youtube. The types of media that draw me closer to God are the Youtube videos I watch. The other accounts I feel like are present in my life for more earthly reasons. I use Facebook to connect with people, but Facebook offers such an easy access to behaviors that I am striving to walk away from. Instagram and Pinterest are creative outlets that offer ideas, but also offer a space for comparison and only a partial look into people’s lives that depict them as more “perfect” than normal. The tricky part of social media is just using it for the good and not being tempted to overuse it.
    2.) Seek GOD FIRST and HAVE FAITH in Him.

  3. says

    I LOVE your reminder in this chapter to be filtering every bit of information we take in through God’s WORD. Most of the time I neglect to do this, and I can feel the peace drain from body as it’s replaced by stress, anxiety and the weight of the world in which we live. I was also convicted by the definition of media as being amoral, considering the fact that it is MY use of media that makes it either good or bad. This really makes me stop and think about my motives and purpose behind each form of media I use.

    My list is fairly similar to everyone else’s–iPhone, computer, television, Kindle, Facebook, blogs, Pandora and Netflix. I would say that the Christian music I stream on Pandora is spiritually encouraging, as well as the Christian books I read on my Kindle and most of the blogs I follow. It is the constant and unnecessary checking of email on my iPhone, the movies and television shows that I really shouldn’t be watching and the mindless roaming on Facebook that all draw me away from God. I recently ended a month-long break from Facebook, as it is a tool that only seems to aggravate my struggles with jealousy, bitterness and comparison. It was refreshing to step away from it for a while, and not surprisingly, it was during that month that my hunger for God and his WORD began to grow!

  4. says

    Hi Courtney

    Thank you so much for sharing this today. I find the best way for me to seek God first is to get out of bed early, before my children are awake. I use this time to seek God and what He would have me do throughout my day.

    Now, I am not saying I am perfect or what I am doing is the best way, I just find that it’s working for me know. I love Matthew 6:33 and that struggle daily to hold on to that promise.

    Hebrew 11:6 “But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him” is all power and true. Only faith can show to our what we truly stand for in this world.

    But I would like to add one more, “For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age,[a] against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places” Ephesians 6:12. It is not so much the information is our problems is what we do with the information that please or displease God.

    Peace.

  5. Jen Hartmann says

    1. I try each day to use all the media I devote time to be used only to seek and learn God’s word. Would say I mostly use my iPhone for my christian music I play many times throughout the day but can get distracted somedays reflecting more on my to do list and my calendar. I also have a Facebook account which is used daily right now to keep up for a wonderful group of ladies in bible study fellowship I belong to and I am also doing the GMG Intentionally Focused study, but it is easy to get distracted and start reading the news feed, fortunately some posts are reflecting God’s word like your posts, Lysa TeKeurst, Proverbs 31 Ministries, but would say posts not reflecting God’s word are posted more so have to be more conscious how much time I spend on FB. I use a mini iPad as well and have great christian books I am reading right now. Trying to make more of an effort to drown out the noise in the wold, find myself not having my TV on as much anymore and enforcing more restricted time our kids do.

    Have found it to be true if I am not actively seeking God, I am less aware of Him seeking me :)

  6. KellyK(@RNCCRN9706) says

    1) Facebook,Twitter,Pinterest,Instagram,YouTube,TV, Sirius XM Satellite Radio(Station 63 The Message ;) ) Movies (Not many though) . Had it not been for Googling Frugal living in 2010 when undergoing money troubles..which lead me to Generation Cedar (Kelly Crawford’s blog) which lead me here to your blog and then Sheila Wray Gregoire’s blog..I’d have never in a MILLION years and HE KNEW I’d NEED your guidance in a short while to get me thru the BIGGEST faith crisis of my LIFE! I mostly stick to Christian blogs but also surf blogs that aren’t Christian..like you said 10% are pure time-wasters. I’m doing the latest GMG study through a Facebook group because as a night shift worker, it’s hard to connect with fellow Christian women IRL. Finding Women Living Well, Good Morning Girls and To Love Honor and Vacuum has helped my Christian walk tremendously. It was such an honor to meet you at the WLW conference last August :) it was truly the highlight of my 2013 :D

    2) Oh em gee! I just had a flashback to signing Matthew 6:33 at Mass on Sundays!! “Seek ye first the kingdom of God and all His righteousness. And all these things shall be added unto you. Alllellu…allelujuah!” So I DO have a Bible verse memorized! GO ME! lol

  7. says

    I use my iPhone, my iPad and my Macbook Air. I use these things for Facebook, food blogging, Twitter, email, reading my daily deviations, reading my bible, reading this book for the study, listening to radio, shopping online.
    What takes me away from God is social media. I do follow christians as well as friends from high school and close friend, and being on there is what takes away the time I have for God. I have a business in which I reach out to people via these outlets. And that takes me from God.
    I am working on taking the quiet time in life to spend that time that is really needed with God. To pray, to talk, to journal, to teach the kids I have what is most important.
    Patricia Peterson

  8. Melissa Donovan says

    Honestly, everything draws me away from God’s word…the time spent on FB or on some other blog or Pinterest, all take time away from sitting down with God and opening up my bible. Have I done anything about it up until now, not as much as I could….

    I do use a Bible App at times and I do use a Scripture Memory App as well…. but both of them can get in the way of doing God’s work if I am spending time on them and not doing something I should be around my house…..

    Finding the right balance and not letting the devices and inventions of the world get in the way of having real time with the Lord is the issue.

    Before I seek out the latest updates on FB or pins on Pinterst, have I really given my time to the Lord…..have I spent all day surfing around when I could have spent diligent time with Him….

    Can I really expect to reap the blessings when I have not put Him first in my priorities…when I have spent all day on the internet and only give him the last part of the day as I fall asleep am I really getting the blessing that He would really like to give me, or did I just miss out…

    • Dani says

      Hi Melissa,
      I love your honesty, because I am in agreement with you that every minute I spend on social media that is not pertaining to my spiritual growth is a distraction from The Great I Am!

  9. Josie says

    1. Facebook twitter pinterest. I try to not use them too much but then I lose track of time which is pretty easy to do. Time just runs away from you when you’re online.

    2.
    Matthew 6:33 says we should turn to Him before anything else so we really should read our Bibles before turning on the computer every morning or checking our emails.

  10. Janice says

    1.) FB, Email, texting, Twitter, Pinterest and I used to have a blog which took up a LOT of my time. I quit blogging, I don’t really enjoy Twitter, I only go to Pinterest now for very specific things as all the pics I’ve pinned overwhelm me, and recently while helping my son feed cows ones evening a bull got after me and I ended up losing my brand new iphone in cow poop to which it was soon stomped. I soon felt naked w/out it. However, it’s been a blessing. I have so far refused to go out and purchase a new one. I didn’t realize how much time and attention I gave to it until it was gone. My mind is more clear and I don’t feel I need it. Really. I was not using my phone to draw me closer to God. But FB and email can….as long as I subscribe to the right things. It’s how I found this study.

    2.) Be diligent in seeking his Kingdom & his righteousness

    Have a great day ladies! :)

  11. Alicia says

    1. I use email, FB, Instagram, Pinterest, reading blogs, and watch tv and movies. A lot of this is used for spiritual encouragement. But there are times when what I read or stumble upon pulls me away from God such as seeing something on FB that is posted with the goal of hurting others. This is an area of my life that I need to probably spend time praying over and thinking about how it is impacting me. Thank you for that nudge.

    2. We should be seeking God first and foremost every day of our life. We should seek Him FIRST and let all these other things (distractions) fall in line after that.

  12. Amy says

    1) Computer, internet, dvd’s, cd’s, radio, books, magazines, Netflix, Pandora…
    Any of these draw me closer to God by putting the focus on Him, whether it’s songs that praise Him or articles that bring me to godly conclusions to be applied in my life, books that honor Him or movies that have a godly focus. On the flip side, any of these can pull me away from God. I think it depends on my focus.
    2) We are to be seeking God and His ways FIRST. That is to be our focus.

  13. says

    Guilty!! Yes I love candy crush. Yes it is soo easy to be distracted with all these gizmos as my Mother calls them. Thank you Courtney for keeping us on track. Your book has been very inspiring. Everyday I am trying harder to walk with the king and not get pulled off course. I feel so much happier when I walk with the king. I know he is with me every moment cheering me on. Thank you Lord! I love you!!

  14. Angela says

    Facebook has become a distraction for me. I enjoy reading posts from friends and mentors, but lately there is more negative than positive which pulls me away from God. Limiting my time of FB has been really helpful to me and I am prioritizing my time much better.

    God comes first. Before we open our email, FB, etc., we need to open up our Bible and spend some time with God.

    I have so much to be thankful for. I want to be obedient and show Him how grateful I am. Thanks for opening my eyes to what changes I can make.

  15. Tracy says

    Since we work from our home I am on the computer quite a bit during the day. We do use FB, twitter and pinterest for our office. I am on that more on the weekends since that is when I schedule our posts for our page on facebook. This does free up time for me during the week which can be a bad thing. My personal use is FB, YouTube, Instagram, Pinterest and TV. I am trying to weed out unnecessary foloowers and likes as well. I really only want to veiw or hear positive things. It is a journey.

    We must remember that God is first and that we should seek above all things.

    I am really enjoying this program and the book!

  16. Dani says

    I am rarely on Facebook, I am on Insta-gram to monitor my daughters post, my son and daughter are my only followers. However, I do follow a few make-up artist and WLW, I also follow uplifting and financial blogs as these are my greater interest. I can get caught up in the financial blogs, trying to figure out ways to become debt free faster. I was reminded today by my scripture reading, Jer. 29:11: For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. The Lord has been so good to me and my family and I thank Courtney for writing a chapter on how some of us are being over taken by social media. I vow to use it in a positive manner but putting God first!!

  17. Amanda says

    Oh media… I use Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Bloglovin… we don’t have cable, but I do watch a few select shows online and listen to podcasts. I think all of these have the potential to draw me closer to God, but I often don’t use them that way; typically if I have free time I choose one of these hobbies over reading my Bible. Out of all of these options though I think the blogs and podcasts are the most positive because I typically listen to Christian voices for encouragement, but should never be a substitute for God’s Word. I loved your encouragement, Courtney, to read God’s book before opening Facebook– I’m definitely going to try!!

    In response to Matthew 6:33 and Hebrews 11:6 we are to be seeking God and His Kingdom.

  18. Emese says

    1.) I have a laptop, an iphone, and a smartTV (that we only use for Netflix, DVDs and VHS). I use my laptop to connect with your blog, and the GMGs. I once had a facebook account but then I deactivated it because I was spending waaaay to much time on it. When I discovered GMGs I started a new facebook account but have disciplined myself to use it ONLY for my GMGs group. It is only from the Lord’s strength that I have been able to discipline myself in this aspect! I started watching the 19 Kids and Counting on Netflix and although the Duggar family’s walk with God has encouraged me in several different ways, there are times that the show has sucked me in and I spent more time watching it then on other responsibilities (such as, reading God’s word, finishing the laundry, going to bed earlier!) I have an instagram account, but like facebook, I only allow myself to open it up on the weekends because that too has distracted me in the past. Oh that technology, it is a very very tricky thing! :)

    2.) Matthew 6:31-34 were the first verses I clearly remember reading and meditating on before I became a Christian. I think these verses really got the wheels turning in my mind but also inspired my heart to truly seek first the kingdom of God. In Hebrews 11:6 we must be like Enoch, fully walking with the Lord and having true faith in His mighty ways.

  19. Jamie says

    It never ceases to amaze me that I find these things just as I am questioning decisions that I have recently made for the betterment of not only my spiritual life but that of my children. I actually deactivated my facebook yesterday. For me that was a HUGE deal but over the weekend I was unable to sleep and I was surfing random christian blogs and I stumbled upon one where while I don’t entirely agree with all her opinions on topics I was challenged to review how I spend my time and how much is spent on social media. This lead to a very honest posting about my impending hiatus from facebook downloading all the pictures from my albums that I would want to print and the deactivation. I unfortunetely can’t delete the app from my phone without compromising its working process so I am stuck with that but it is all logged out and inoperable for the time being. It has been a very weird day and I keep almost logging in to check it. That alone has made me realize how much time I spent there instead of in my bible or with people that I love that I used it as an escape and a distraction from my main mission field: Motherhood. Now to sort out the swirling thoughts in my head about other media: tv, movies, blogs, pinterest, email all that jazz. How can I use that to further God’s kingdom rather than just entertain and distract myself feeding the self involvement monster that resides in us all?

    • Jamie says

      after posting this I realized that deactivating wasn’t just enough that wasn’t fully committing to the direction I feel myself being led. I went and opted for the delete account option. While that is a bit disconcerting ,which is not a feeling I want associated with losing a worldly thing, it is liberating. Praise God for this change!!

      • Dawn C says

        I deleted my Facebook account over a year ago & it was a little weird at first, but I haven’t regretted it :) And I found out who my friends really were and who I haven’t heard from since. Good luck going through Facebook detox-you can do it!

  20. Emma says

    1. I learned a good while ago to keep my focus and attention on good wholesome Christian media. Women Living Well is a real encouragement to me!
    We no longer have Cable T.V ( saves money too). Want to reduce these distractions to that one point where I can seek after God!
    2. We are to be seeking first the Kingdom of God and His Righteousness.

  21. Amanda S. says

    1. Pinterest, Facebook, email, Nook, various blogs, mostly Christian and style blogs. I try to get into God’s word first thing, but lately I have been looking at my phone to help me wake up without hitting snooze. One bad habit for another! I was challenged by this chapter to let go of that or to find something edifying to do on my phone each morning.

    2. We are to seek God, His kingdom, and His righteousness. The three elements remind me what it means to seek God, which can seem so big! I want to ponder over seeking His kingdom and His righteousness.

  22. Sarah says

    the computer, tv, and kindle are the only forms of media i use during the week. kindle is strictly for playing mahjong. i am obsessed! i watch a lot of tv, usually at night when the kids go to bed, my husband and i have several shows we watch together. we dvr them and then watch before bed. the main one is the computer with email and some facebook. email is my only way of communicating with others, and i email my husband while he’s at work throughout the day. facebook i usually only go on a couple times a week and it’s mainly to post pictures of my kids for family who all live away. i used to do facebook and pinterest a lot more, but just didn’t have the time anymore. decided to put them on the backburner as i put more time towards studying the bible or just taking care of the things God has entrusted me to take care of on a daily basis. i do subscribe to several christian bloggers and institutions on facebook, so do take the time to read many of those if the topic interests me. i also subscribe to max lucado’s weekly email devotional. it’s about 50/50 online on whether it draws me away or toward God. my tv time pulls me away.

    we are to seek God, his kingdom, and his righteousness.

  23. Jamileh says

    The only forms of media in our home are computers and the tv. Tv is rarely watched unless we sit down as a family to watch a movie together or educational videos (I homeschool). I only use the computer for email, homeschool and online Bible studies and book clubs. I have absolutely no interest in facebook, twitter, and all that. The desire isn’t there and I am very happy about it. As a matter of fact my 21 year old son decided to delete his facebook account several months ago because he recognized it was getting in the way of his relationship with God! God is SO good and faithful! I had been praying about this for a long time! Just like anything else, media can be very addicting. God has put a desire and hunger within me for HIM and not the things of this world. Even my cell phone is ancient. Whenever I do get a new phone (which only happens every few years when it’s free) it’s very basic…calling and texting only. My life is busy enough. I don’t need to make it busier with things and technology.
    I love the verse in Matthew! We quote this a lot in our home…”But seek first the kingdom of YAHWEH and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.” We are to seek HIM only and through seeking HIM we will have everything we need to make us whole and complete! We will want for nothing! Hebrews talks about how pleasing God is impossible without faith. We have to remember that faith is not something that is walked out blindly. Faith is something that is substance and evidence. Amen!!

  24. Dawn C says

    1-My list is pretty common-various email accounts, Pinterest, Twitter, news apps, TV, movies and radio. I took the K-LOVE 30 day challenge and I’m only listening to Christian music & I’ve really enjoyed it! The alot of my time on social media is a time waster, except for this book club and some of the bloggers I’ve started to follow on Twitter & Pinterest. We got iPhones about 6 months ago and I’m not sure it was the best idea since we tend to stare at those stupid phones waaaayyy too much! I’m trying to curb that “filler” time so that when I’m on social media, I actually enjoy the time and don’t just use it as a time waster.
    2. God rewards those who seek Him! Not seeking the best crockpot recipe on Pinterest but seeking Him :)

  25. Samantha says

    1.) Pause for a moment and list all the media you currently use in a week. Now consider and sort through it, which of the media draws you closer to God and which of the media pulls you away from God.

    TV: Don’t watch too much of it. All we have is Netflix and currently my shows are not up to date. But when they are, I am constantly thinking about them and wanting to watch them. Xbox: I play some games, but not to where they are overtaking my life. I only use it when I have free time. But I do play Christian music most of the day through the I heart Radio app on the Xbox. Computer: Ugh!! This is a battle for me. I do read about 5 blogs but they are all Christian. I have other emails but I don’t read them all the time unless they sound interesting. I usually skim. I have facebook. I don’t post hardly anything but read others’ post. Pinterest: Love it. On it most of the time when I want to find a cute outfit, hairstyle, things for the kids to do, something sweet to do for hubby etc. I do often read about deals of the day and “window” shop. I am on the internet pretty much 70% of the day.

    2.) God has not called His children to seek information; He calls us to seek Him. Read Read Matthew 6:33 and Hebrews 11:6 {again} what are we to be seeking?

    We need to seek “the kingdom of God” and “earnestly seek Him.” Compared to my media intake, I do not seek Him enough! I need to cut out some of my internet time, especially if it doesn’t pertain to me seeking God!

  26. Susan says

    1. What draws me away from God, they depends on whom I follow. If I follow Christian who loves God truly, they pull me to God. Facebook and Instagram… oh how you are so tempting. A status from a friend, a link to a hot topic, a photo related to my hobby, I really need to sort whom I follow, so that I will be guarded.

    2. Seek His kingdom & His righteousness, seek Him.

  27. Karie says

    I have an iPhone, iPad, and computer to email, Facebook , read and play my games on. I would say Facebook and my games distracts me the most from my walk with God. I did not have an account for the longest time so when I opened one I really did not understand what it was all about. I wish I would have been pickie about the friends I accepted. I would say the rest of the media has been positive

  28. Kim Abbott says

    1 – Facebook, Pinterest, email, movies, games on phone, blogs. What draws me away from God is playing games on the phone. I have been guilty of this being the first thing I do when I wake up. I am really working hard on that. What draws me closer to God are some of the blogs I read.

    2 – Seek God!

  29. says

    Just finished a blog post about this based on your questions. I am on everything! Too much, really! I’m an information overload sufferer for sure! But I did share some tips in a post earlier this week sharing what I’ve done to streamline Facebook, like lists and limit reading the timeline to Fridays {dubbed Facebook Friday around here}. I use FB Groups for my GMG study but stay clear of the newsfeed otherwise. I’ve been challenged to look at the other things I’m using though. Great great chapter of a great great book!

  30. says

    There are too many sights I frequent online that pull me in too often. I do facebook, pinterest, email, blogs, instagram, tv. There are only a few that are actually good for me-I get weekly emails from a pastor, I read bible verses daily on my FB feed, but otherwise they are all just time-suckers. I do pray often for people that I read about, but otherwise these outlets draw me away from everything.

    We are to seek God! We need to seek him through His word. I need to cut out more of my media time and read the Bible and books pertaining to following our savior.

  31. Kiley says

    Sorry I am a day behind :)

    1 – Facebook, Blogs, Internet searches, E-mail, Pinterest, YouTube, iPhone, Television, Movies, Instagram, (I thinks that’s about it). I would say that most of these can draw me away from God at times, and they have! I have been “cleaning my closet” so to speak in these areas. I used to DVR tons of reality television, I realized they are a waste of my time which could be spent doing something much better. I have deleted some friends off of my list on Facebook as they are either demeaning to others or just very negative people in general. I don’t need that. I have subscribed to blogs that are all blogs that I found through this blog…GMG, Time-Warp Wife, Karen Ehman, Peak 313, these blogs encourage me and teach me to walk closer to God. So while many of these things took me away from God before, some of those same things are bringing me closer now.

    2 – Seek His Kingdom, Seek God, and Seek righteousness

  32. Elizabeth says

    1.) Currently I use Facebook, Youtube, blogs, Email, Pinterest, Meetup – Like Courtney said in the video, MAJORITY of who I follow and read are encouraging people (like Women Living Well!), but there is that percentage that isn’t Christ-centered. For example, one channel I subscribe to on Youtube is a movie reviewer which will sometimes pull me in to get “caught up” on what movies are worth watching and what movies aren’t. Since most movies nowadays are worldly – this is definitely one area that I get pulled away from God.
    2.) We are to be seeking God first – which is something I have struggled with in the past. This past week I made a commitment to get up earlier and use that extra time to study my Bible. It has been AMAZING! I have felt more energized each day and I even had a co-worker comment that she thought I looked much happier (and that was on the first day that I started this!) I am so grateful that God is faithful and has continued to fill me with HIS joy as I endeavor to change my focus.

  33. Deborah Starr says

    Facebook is media that calls to me every morning. Mornings were never my thing, I loved late nights & sleeping in. After having kids I found for me was not possible to continue. The way I wanted my home to be could not get there without me putting in the time & energy to get it. So I had to train myself to go to bed early & get up early & enjoy it. Now if I have to miss a morning because of Holidays or Vacations I really miss it! I have become aware of that pull with Facebook & have to force myself to not go there until my quiet time is finished. I have always tried to keep all of my media positive & Jesus approved. Movies is the hardest because of all the language now days.

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