I am, once again, wrestling with the state of the world - the level of darkness in it and the sinfulness of people's hearts and souls. I had come back from a teacher's conference where someone had made an innocent reference to an antique garden hoe that they had found. Except they called it a "Virginia hoe". Suddenly the room filled with much laughter. I had no clue what they were laughing about; and looked around for answers. (Being clueless is NOT a rare occurance for me - hence I've learned to be a quick study...) And then I realized. They were laughing because the words 'Virginia hoe', made everyone think of a whore. In the US, the word 'ho' has come to be associated with it. Even my 6th graders knew that. Everyone knew that. Everyone except me.
Have I mentioned that I don't watch television anymore? I stopped about 25 years ago. Simply had no time with 4 small children and a husband gone to sea. I never picked the habit back up. Once the children were older, I began my law practice, and never had a spare minute to waste. Now I wonder how anyone manages to get anything done in this world. Studies show that people watch television every single night! How are they living?
I know one thing that they are not doing. They are not keeping an innocent heart, and mind.
I was also, a couple weeks ago, at a conference for my husband's employment. One of his colleagues was there, and began talking about the hotel rooms and how they were condusive to intimate relations. However, he did not use the term 'intimate relations' - he used something much cruder. I was embarrassed to have heard it; but I suppose I was not surprised. Gone are the days when certain things were NEVER raised in 'polite company'. I suppose, perhaps, because gone is 'polite company'.
And so my newest mantra is not just that television will waste your time - it is that television is destroying your mind, heart and soul. The level of sin, filth and sexual innuendo that has grown in our culture can be laid directly at its feet - and we seem to not even notice. We seem to think that this is how it has always been. But it's not. People did not eat, breathe, and swallow sin when I was young. It was unheard of, and would be crushed immediately if discovered. People then had strong boundaries that kept those horrible things OUT THERE. But we have actually now invited those horrible things IN HERE - into our living rooms - and they have slowly, but surely, taken over our minds.
These are not horrible people I am talking about. They are us. Teachers and pilots, wives and husbands, mothers and fathers, teenagers and children - all think that to think with a filthy mind is normal; to see sex in a garden hoe is normal; to waste and even destroy your life is.... normal.
I have no answers but one: Pray, pray, and pray again. But first - turn off the television.
Ashley and Susan
Two women asking the world to not just hope, but to Hope in Love.