Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Mr. Media Man

He takes many forms.  He can be a man in a tight-suit with the big “S” on his chest.  He can sport a cowboy hat and chaps.  He sometimes has a beautiful voice, a perfect animated smolder, and falls for the long-haired princess.  Perhaps he is dashing and serious; the owner of a factory in England.  He may carry a gun.  Or a feather pen and paper.  He may wear a crown.  Or a leather jacket and blue jeans.  He is a poet with dreams.  He is a warrior with conviction.  He is a business man with difficulties.  He is a prince in search of love.  He is a farmer fighting for his land.  He is a punk teenager trying to survive highschool.
He is Mr. Media Man.
And whoever he is… is perfect.

Oh, of course, he has faults.  No one likes a hero that is without faults.  He may have a temper.  He could be insecure.  He may be a touch rebellious.  But those faults only seem to add to his perfection.  Ironic.

He is lovely to watch.  Eye candy.  He can be whatever type you like!  He can be smooth-faced with the sky blue eyes and dirty blonde hair.  He can be rugged with a five ‘o’clock shadow, along with dark eyes and black, curly hair.  He can be a brunette with the sparkling green eyes.  Or the lively redhead. 
Manly.  Boyish.  Intense.  Just sweet.  Illusive.  Romantic.  Mysterious.  Funny.  You pick!

And even if he isn’t Mr. America, there is still something about him that appeals to you.  There’s something about this unreachable Prince Charming that is so intriguing that it turns thinking, mature women into drooling, wishful little girls for the hour and a half he covers the screen of the television.  Or the couple days he graces the pages of the novel.

Or is it for just that length of time?  A couple hours… a few days… just while he’s right there, obvious, before you?  Before me?

Perhaps his exact face and figure won’t stay in the forefront of the mind for years to come… but we file it into the back of the brain.  We don’t forget him.  How can we?  He’s too good to be true!

And he is.  Too good to be true.

And we say we know that.  We know its fiction.  Just like girls I knew in highschool would read romance novels because they knew they could handle it and it would never ever affect them. 

Our eyes suck in Mr. Media Man.  His relationships.  His characteristics.  His good looks.  His irresistibility.  But we know it isn’t real.  It won’t affect us, right?  And we would never compare our future husbands (or present husbands!) to him.
We fail to see the danger behind his suave persona.  Or we see it… and ignore the warning signs.
And yes, in case you didn’t know,

I’m not against films or books that contain romance.  There are some that I really enjoy.  But what should our minds, as young women (single or not), be focused on?  God tells us to think on whatever is true, right, noble, pure, lovely, admirable, excellent, and praiseworthy. 
I don’t know about you, but most of the media around us doesn’t follow this standard at all.  Books and movies.  And yes, even Christian romance novels. 

I’ve shut Christian books in disgust before, wondering how the blatant impurity of its content could be edifying to a Christian reader.
But, to be honest, I’ve not always slammed the book shut.

So I’m talking to myself here too.

As one who has spent hours watching many films that sport many assortments of Mr. Media Man, I can easily form a picture of what my perfect man should be.  How he should act, talk, dress… how he should please me.  How he should make me feel.

And that is not only dangerous.  It is wrong.

I’m sorry.  It is. 

Thinking that my “Prince Charming” should be all these things for my sake and my satisfaction is the epitome of my sinful, selfishness and has no place in growing to Biblical womanhood. 
Why should I be focused on all he should be when I still have so much growing to do to be the helpmeet he will need.
Oh, self-serving woman’s mind!  Why can I not seek to better myself so I can bless him someday?  So I can be an honor to him?  When did love, relationships, and marriage become about my gratification?
A man who has been in the ministry for years said something to Andrew and me while we were out for lunch with him:  “Marriage is about how you can serve the other person.  If you both stop focusing on your own needs and instead are willing to sacrifice for the other, then both of your needs will be met!  It’s as simple as that!”  And I couldn’t agree with him more.  In light of that, how does drooling over Mr. Media Man help me to become the wife I must be to make this simple, Godly system work?
Easy answer… it won’t.  Trust me, we’re still going to notice when a man is good-looking or has an incredible personality, but that can’t be what drives our minds or emotions.

Should we still have standards?  Of course.  It is just a matter of realizing what standards… Who’s standards… really matter.  If he loves the Lord, wishes to grow in Him, serve Him, raise a family that loves and honors Him… and if he will lead and protect and provide with God as his strength… I had better not be worrying about if he’s as “hot” as whatever Mr. Media Man I fancy.
I should be taking care to be a young woman of God.  A woman my husband isn’t throwing his love away on. 

How can I do that?
Be honorable.  Read the Bible.  Pray.  Grow. Serve.  Somehow take on the attitude of a servant, humble and thankful and willing.  Love.  Be patient.  Rely on the Lord to be my strength in weakness. 
Say no to the world and all its alluring traps.
Be pure of mind, body, and soul (even though that will take a ton of effort).

Be resolute.

And… as painful as it might be…

Kiss the adoration of Mr. Media Man goodbye.

Come on… it won’t hurt his feelings.

He is fictional… remember?


Natasha Atkerson said...

Great post, Rachel! I admire your honesty, and tackeling this tough subject. I've written about this before on my blog, and the discussion got....heated. It's a subject many girls like to avoid. "Oh 'Christian' romances are fine!" Really? I can't tell you how many times I've personally closed books. Right on, Rachel!
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Kristin said...

Thanks Rachel, I needed to be reminded of that!! Great post!