The TV-Family and the Gluttonous Man
The Lord gave me a dream that speaks volumes of today’s church and its people.
I was in a house, and the owners of the house had gathered their entire family and friends on a large, wide, comfortable couch in front of a TV. Everyone was happy, peaceful, quiet, and close together–they way a family with young kids might watch a good show together one night on TV.
There was one empty couch beside them also.
I found myself in another part of the house, in the kitchen and dining area which led to the front door, where people could come in and out, as they pleased.
In the kitchen was one man, who was decrepit, sinful, lazy, gluttonous, and sexually immoral. He had made a big bag of popcorn and was making a huge mess, spilling food everywhere, stepping on it, doing what he wanted in the kitchen, and generally living like a pig.
He was also waiting for his girlfriend to come back, so they could sin together.
I tried to admonish him and get him to shape up, but my words fell on deaf ears, and by my self, I had very little to offer him to entice him away from his gluttonous lifestyle.
He reminded me in many ways of the prodigal son, except he had no intention of returning. He had given up his faith entirely, and had been led further astray by his unbelieving girlfriend.
I went into the other room, to warn the owners of the house, and to see if perhaps they could help. They looked comfortable together and so entranced by the movie they watched, that the thought of even asking them to intercede was out of the question. A few of them stirred at my presence, but they were not even aware that I had entered the room.
I sat on the empty couch next to them by myself for a minute. I noticed they were watching a movie-length cartoon. The content of the show was family-friendly, humorous, and even artistic. Bill Cosby was one of the voices of the main characters.
I couldn’t stand to sit and watch TV, even if the content was ‘good’. I got up and went back to the other room where the gluttonous man was still eating and sitting around, waiting for his girlfriend. Except he he was so focused on his own comfort and desires, that he had forgotten she was coming and hadn’t even showered or dressed to meet her.
She finally entered the house and was shocked by his appearance, because she had made herself attractive for their date. I thought that she was going to leave him right then and there, based on his appearance and lack of care for himself, her, or anything else. But he won her over with a sweet glance and a few carefully chosen words. They walked away together to a hidden part of the house, a large, secret closet of sorts, where they could be alone.
I thought of going back to the family, but knew that I did not fit in; I thought of returning to the gluttonous man and his girlfriend, thinking that at least they were living in the real world, rather than transfixed by television and warmed by their own symbolically incestuous relationships.
I realized I had no where to go. I could not in good conscience stay with the family and waste my life, nor could I live in the world of the gluttonous man. Clearly the family represented the church and God’s people and the gluttonous man represented the ways of the world. And I found myself alone, unable to worship truly at church and unable to live at peace in the world. Where are God’s true people? Those who worship Him in Spirit and in Truth?
I found myself transported to the beach, running on the sand with a young man, a new believer in Christ, who was trying to find his way. I had managed to escape from the house, and though not with a body of believers, I was at least on open ground with possibilities before me. I thought of swimming in the ocean, resting on the beach, or just running ahead to my next destination. I did not feel fully satisfied, but at least there was hope, freedom, and peace.
My belief is that the church of God, the people of God, have been distracted by television and technology, and have sought comfort rather than focusing on spreading the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Does this describe you? Is your church-body distracted? Pray that God opens up the eyes of His children to seek Him in everything that they do!