“Life has no remote,” says a church billboard. “Get up and change it yourself.”
Perhaps you’ve seen that epigram.
So this question, for us all: what channel are we on?
That’s asked because life is a series of “channels.” We often choose what we see, hear, and experience.
And when we don’t, the “TV” — other people; life situations; spirits — choose for us.
There is static. There are shows we don’t want to see. There are racy sitcoms. There are tragedies. There can be spookiness.
“Channels” are also: waterways. They are fjords, rivers, and creeks (some of them whitewater) we navigate.
There are channels of excitement and vibrance and beauty, and there are channels of pollution, depression, discouragement, laziness, irreligion. There are channels of the positive. There are channels of negativity. Criticality. There are channels of holiness and channels of sinfulness (many TV stations here!). Despair. What are you “channeling”?
The negative ones are often caused by sloth, defined as laziness, passivity, indifference. It’s inertia. A boat can’t move (at least not forward, to again mix metaphors) unless we paddle.
The Bible indicates that sloth, one of the “seven deadly sins,” is avoidance of physical, mental, or spiritual work, which is necessary to the Christian. Note how Jesus was always on the move. Note how He changed the channel of history. He walked on water and rose above everything.
Without physical work, our bodies deteriorate. Our homes are sullied — dusty or worse. We’re bored. Our jobs are unfulfilling: stagnant.
We can reverse that, making joy even out of the tasks we least like if we decide to. Labor at what you need to do for the glory of God. Embrace what is arduous. Offer it. With discipline, find happiness.
There are channels of success and failure, abundance and lacking, defeat and victory. (Choose victory!)
What are you “watching”? Where are you “paddling”? Do you even know? Are you dragged by a current instead of “surfing,” allowing waves to crash over you, instead of riding them? We watch our lives pass as if we have no control (remote or otherwise).
It’s that first thrust to get out of bed or “off the couch” or on our knees that often tells the story. As soon as you know you have to change the channel, do it. The longer you watch — the longer you wait — the less control you have. You can instantly alter that. The alternative is to let things go where they will and watch helplessly as your life drifts into a backwater.
Take control. Pray. Embrace each new day. Press the “snooze” button no longer. Turn on the light instead of staring into the dark. See the first rays of dawn. Don’t deceive yourself and just lay there (“Oh, I’m too tired. I can sleep longer. It doesn’t have to get done today.”). Reboot, this season of the Resurrection.