Tuesday, January 5, 2010

ignorance sometimes really isn't bliss

So I apologize in advance for not blogging so much in the last month. Granted its been advent and Christmas and much traveling and celebrating have been done versus reasoning things out over the internet. And its good to be spending time with family instead of alone in a hole in a lab doing calculations and blogging about various endeavors. So honestly, while there is much updating to do, as in I am finally sitting in my living room on one of my couches that has been stored in the garage for the past 2 months, and a storage unit for a month before that. I had forgotten how comfy these couches are and how prone I am to sleeping on them. But I will save house improvements for a later date.

In the meantime, I want to go through my thought process after watching a TV show on ABC family. I usually watch this show and usually am annoyed with it, and you must wonder why do I watch it if I just get angry with it. Well for one thing it plays into the mind of some of the leading evangelical type thinkers who see Jesus as a savior, but don't have much to build on when it comes to moral dilemmas and how Jesus applies to them. The Secret Life of the American Teenager is a show written and produced by the same person that did 7th Heaven. 7th Heaven is much tamer than the secret life, but certain qualities of it are more in line with what is done on the Secret Life, the Secret Life just brings them out to the extreme.

When I originally watched it, I think it hooked me because I knew it was gonna be pro-life, in the sense that the teenager that discovered she was pregnant from a one-night stand that didn't even feel like sex to her wasn't going to abort the child within her. And it was interesting to see all the drama that came from this in her life. And in some ways there is a lot to say about the current state of American culture in what they portray. They have many broken homes, many live-in significant others, and an ok about sex outside of marriage, all reflections of todays current culture, at least in media portrayal. They even added a gay teen to the mix last season and he has carried out the typical role of sidekick and a voice of reason amongst the rest of them not knowing what they are doing as teenagers. (This annoys me that a heterosexual teenager isn't allowed to be a voice of reason in this show and in some recent movies as well, because for some reason us heterosexuals are just plain messed up.) My husband has named this show the Secret Life the American Sex Addict, because when it really comes down to it thats what the show is about. Everyone is in different stages of their sexual development, and apparently every one of the teens wants to have sex and sees little determent about waiting. The only one that has decided not to have sex in high school is the younger sister of the girl who now has a baby boy to take care of.

So with all that, lets dive into the portrayal of Christianity on this show. There are two distinctly Christian families on the show, and the rest are all nominal versions of some form of Christianity. The two distinctly Christian households are the minister's family and the Bowman's. The minister's family has a teenage son Jack, and the Bowman's have a teenage daughter Grace. Jack totally comes off as the kid that might look Christian on the outside, but in his everyday values doesn't live it out. He will do anything to have sex, and it even goes far enough that Grace twists prayer around to say that God told her that it was ok to have sex because she wanted to keep Jack from having sex with other people. And after this there is some family drama as her dad dies and she blames it on the sex. And so she becomes a born again virgin, which I have nothing against people doing, her situation is a little odd though. A few months later, Jack convinces her again that to have oral sex with him. And she doesn't really want to this time, but does it anyway. When her mom catches wind of this having happened, her immediate response is that she doesn't want her to get pregnant, so that she would rather her be doing this than having conjugal sex, but then she is worried about her getting an STD from that. So what does she decide is an ok way to prevent Grace from getting pregnant or getting an STD? Drumroll please. That's right people, masturbation. Lovely isn't it.

This made me think once again about the mentality of a lot of well meaning people, and at that well meaning Christians. They understand to say no to sex, they understand some of the major medical complications that could come of it. But they don't understand the reasoning behind the no. Why the no is meant to keep you from all the scarring that comes along with the out of context sex and to help you to see the beauty in the yes to it in marriage. The beauty of the renewal of vows with each time a couple comes together in sex. The beauty of making a child to show the world how much love is there, a tiny window into the love of God. But instead our culture is so mixed up, that Christians on shows are portrayed as people who just have to say no to sex for no apparent reason. And with that they can justify oral sex and masturbation because those aren't truly sex in their eyes. And since they aren't sex they have no ramifications on their virginity or their purity, or emotions or the biggest reason, how they treat their future spouse. I sometimes wonder at the statistic of how many wives put up with their husbands masturbating and porn habits. I wonder how many of them think its healthy. I wonder how many of them are secretly hurt by their not feeling adequate to their husbands sexual needs. I hurt for all those women and men that don't know that it can get any better than a contracepting/masturbating/porn viewing marriage. I want them to know more, to not be ignorant, but to truly be able to love their spouse completely in sex and in everyday life. And, so when this show portrays Christians as clueless people that aren't supposed to have sex outside of marriage but can get by with justification of other sexual acts, I want to yell and scream. But really I should pray for those out there that really don't know any better, and are in their daily life living with this lack of understanding and totally unsatisfied because of it. Because as I titled it, ignorance really isn't bliss sometimes.

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