Monday, January 23, 2006

Secret Sodom

I love the internet. How cool is it that within seconds we can find out information on any topic we want. We can have “real time” conversations with people in far away places… for free! Music, any music you want, is a click away. And many have found their soul-mate through online introductions.

But the internet can also be a sin magnet. A tempting treasure of trash that can suck you in like a black hole. An innocent search on any given topic can quickly lead you to a link to somewhere you had no intention of going to, but find it hard to leave (kinda like the Hotel California.) A private conversation in a chat room, or on MySpace can give one a sense of anonymity that has them speaking in ways they would never speak to those they respect. Music, movies, software… anything that can be digitally stored and transferred, can turn an upstanding citizen into a felon with a few clicks (and oh, how we rationalize!!)

I was reading recently about Abraham and Lot, and their little visit to Sodom and Gomorrah. It is amazing how openly decadent this place was. No shame. And how willing Lot was to live in the middle of that. Ah, yes, but he was able to live “in” that culture and yet not be “of” it. Right, until he offered his daughters as a sex bribe to the men who came to “know” (in the biblical sense) his two male guests, who were angels. Lot, you horrible sinful man! What in the world were you thinking? How could you… oops, something about a pot calling a kettle names comes to mind here.

Integrity is a tough thing. It really means that what you see is what you get. If I appear to be a person who doesn’t talk a certain way, or look at stuff I know I shouldn’t, or one who would never dream of stealing… then, that’s really who I am, even if no one's watching. But the internet has a way of luring me into believing “no one will ever know”. And they may not… but if a tree falls in the forest, and no one is there to hear it – well, you get the point.

I still love the internet. And, if you’re reading this, chances are you do too. All I’m calling for is some integrity in a world that seems to cherish its “secret” sins. Wanna try something really gutsy? Go download this little app that lets you pick a trusted accountability partner and emails him or her your internet history once a month. I dare ya.

Wouldn’t it be something if, when we get to heaven, and we stand at the Great White Throne, the supreme judge of our souls opens our internet history folder? Yikes! When I was a kid, my mom taught me a little song -“O be careful little eyes what you see…”

Silly song… yeah.



The Mad Fishicist said...

Great post Dean. Think I'll use it as a screen saver.


Anonymous said...

My sister and I were just reading the story of Sodom and Gomorrah together a couple of weeks ago. She isn't a Christian, but was willing to read my Daily Bible passages with me as she visited for a weekend. She was so shocked at how open the people there were about their sinful deeds. It seemed kind of surprising to me, too, even though when I take a minute to really think about it - it's that way here, too. In the world today, I mean. Everywhere you look, you can see that our world is becoming openly more violent, more promiscuous, more in-your-face, I guess. And here we are, living right in the middle of it, just as Lot did with his family. Giving in here and there, just as he had with his daughters. Let's pray that every day we give in less to the world and give up more for Him.
Thanks for the entry. Keep 'em comin'.

-Belle Etoile