Screen Time...Jesus... Books
“All things are lawful for me," but not all things are profitable.”
1 Corinthians 10:23
As an 18-year-old first semester freshman at my Christian college I attended a required health course taught by Dr. Rita Pritchett. I remember that she shared this bit of wisdom:
"In life, our choices are often not a matter of choosing good things instead of bad things. Usually it’s about choosing between what’s good, what’s better, and what’s best.”
In Polly And The Screen Time Overload, author Betsy Childs Howard effectively communicates a similar message. I first heard about this book through Anna Katharina Symonds who posts in her “Fill Your House With Books” blog on Instagram. https://www.instagram.com/fillyourhousewithbooks/?igshid=YmMyMTA2M2Y=
(I saw it on Facebook.)
Since screen time has become an issue for my oldest, I decided to give this book a try.
My 6-year-old eagerly opened the package but was then disappointed. What was he expecting? A visiting relative was also surprised, “Another book?” she asked while glancing towards a bookshelf that is entirely full of Christian children’s books.
As if to console himself, my son inquired about watching a DVD. My relative checked with me before granting permission and I agreed- “After you read this book to him.” (Smile.)
“This is pretty long [not really]. How about if we just read a few pages and then it will be DVD time.” She told him.
They liked it! They finished it! What’s more, afterwards they decided that they wanted to play outside which is an important message in the book.
So I think that it “worked.”
Of course, I would love it if more Jesus/Gospel/Bible were included, but at least there was a small mention of God and the verse that begins this post is on the page preceding Polly's story about a trip to visit her grandparents’ farm.
Going back to Dr. Pritchett’s quote, this book might not be the “best" book for this age group (compare to “The Life of Jesus.”), but it is a quality issue-specific resource that you should be aware of. If you know any families who struggle with screen time, this could be a useful gift.
Also, if you happen to be a church librarian, Children’s Pastor, etc., this may be a helpful tool to have on hand just in case it might minister to someone.
Who knows, it might even help parents to choose wisely also. How many of us engage in more screen time than is healthy?
In what other areas of life should we gently encourage ourselves to make better choices with our time, attention, efforts, finances, and other resources?
PS “Bible Rhymes for Young Minds: The Life of Jesus by John Rydell III is a high quality Bible book that I recommend for 3-10 year olds. Here are seven reasons:
1. It focuses on Jesus.
2. It’s basically the Bible.
3. It’s all rhyming.
4. It’s illustrated.
5. It’s affordable.
6. It’s 64 pages of great content (What value and substance!).
7. There’s nothing to not like about this (and you may know that I’m kind of picky in this area.).