Spilled Salt - Reality Check
The other day, while I was playing with my daughter, the news was on. Given my male tendency of not being able to multi-task, I wasn’t paying attention to the news. It was not until after the broadcast ended that my wife pointed out one particular story to me.
It was a story of a couple in South Korea who had 3 month old daughter, who was born prematurely. This couple also had an internet addiction. Put the two together, and the end result was the death of their daughter – due to malnutrition and neglect, a terribly sad ending.
Ironically, the internet addiction was an online role playing game (Prius Online, http://mmohut.com/preview/prius-online), where the couple had to care for a virtual child.
Is this a sign of our times? When reality and fantasy collide and someone actually dies as a result? A description on the games website explains part of the game: “This young girl, called Anima, has her own skills which are strengthened when players bond with her.” In order to be successful in the game then, the players are required to spend time with their online characters.
I must say, I am just completely baffled. How could these parents simply ignore their child? Surely this girl would scream in her hunger – but wait – if you read the article (in the link above) carefully, you’ll find that the parents would actually leave the girl at home while they went to internet cafés, and when they came home one time – they found their daughter – lifeless.
Games are a form of escapism. They give you a chance to take a break, to clear your thoughts, to wind down from routine and monotany. I’m thinking this is fine – in the short term, or in small increments. I do it myself. If it weren’t for “Seinfeld” and “the Simpsons” – I might just lack the ability to wind down and clear my thoughts after a day’s work. I imagine that is how this couple first got started into this gaming addiction.
I would like this to be some sort of reality check.
Take a stock now of your life –
Is there anything (technology, entertainment, or other things) that is removing you from your family?
Is there anything (technology, entertainment, or other things) that is slowly becoming an addiction?
Then also, look at those others in your life (and be very careful about not judging… and more about compassion and caring …),
Your friends & peers,
Your youth (or other church members) group,
Do you see anyone falling in this direction?
Firstly – what can you do about your own situation?
Secondly – what can we do about the situations around us?
Now I have no real advice here – as this isn’t an area of expertise of mine, nor is it an area I’m trained in. I just am feeling that this is something extremely important to be aware of in your own lives. God designed the people in His world to be in relationship – with Him, and with each other.
What are you doing about your relationship with Him?
What are you doing about your relationships with others?
The line that defines reality and fantasy is blurring more and more with each new video game, TV show, movie, or social networking site. We all need to guard our lives, and protect those around us.
Pray that you’ll be given the wisdom to discern what needs to change in your life.
Pray that you’ll be able to help those around you who struggle with this blurry line.