Saturday, May 8, 2010


Wow. That's all I can say. Wow. Holy Magic Hair unleashed A Tale of Two Cities up in here. "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times." Bringing out the Charles Dickens and the French Revolution in folks. For real.

Take me back, dear Lord
I feel led to take SAL back. Get old school and Andrae Crouch on y'all. Back to those good old days when our controversies were simpler, more removed from indicators of the destination of our eternal souls, and could be avoided with simple semantic sleights (lovers of alliteration, I did that for you). Remember "monitors," y'all? Remember when getting all Hamlet ("to have or not to have") with regards to television was a big deal? ::sentimental sniff::

Television vs. Monitors
I remember it well. I remember those days when it was of utmost Pentecostal correctness to make a distinction between "television" and "monitor." "Television" = hellivision, the one-eyed devil and the cause of the unraveling of the moral fabric of our society. "Monitor" = good, wholesome holy contraption on which you would watch Anne of Green Gables and Old Yeller. If you came into the home of a true Apostolic and mistakenly referred to the screen on which their VHS collection of Hallmark movies was displayed as a sinnerly "TV," do you remember the gasps you elicited followed by a quick correction of "It's a monitor, not a TV since we don't watch TV on it"? I do. ::nostalgic sigh::

As I matured in the Lord, I learned that using a TVish screen to watch, say, a DVD of the first season of Lost, is acceptable, whereas watching Lost on ABC is not. Flesh and blood did not reveal this to me.

Enter the Internet
But as is wont to happen in the 21st century, technology throws a monkey wrench into our previously held, 20th century concepts. Thanks a lot, Al Gore. Thanks to your invention, I can no longer make black and white distinctions because the Internet essentially blurred the TV/monitor line. Thanks for essentially erasing my path back to that old landmark. How can I find my direction and get that love placed down in my heart when one of the most vivid lines between the secular and sacred in my fight to live holy has been stripped away from me? Blast you, postmodernism!

Good old fashioned _______
I know the remedy. You know how we always need some good old fashioned whatever to make things better? Some good old fashioned preaching. Some good old fashioned prayer. Some good old fashioned singing. Well, by golly, we need some good old fashioned proponents of monitors. Its semantic usage has declined in recent years due to the advent of the 21st century, but I say we need to bring it back. How many of you will take a stand with me for using the word "monitor" to describe a TVish thing that's not a TV in your home? ThankyaJaysus.


  1. My frustration was not necessarily with the tv/monitor distinction.

    But more so the wasted minutes of conversation i would get lost in, in trying to discern whether I would want to visit my friend's house and spend the night or night. I would always ask, "do you have tv?" Because tv meant the family was fun to me. And we could probably get away with watching pg-13 movies, and if I made my friend cry in a skirmish, the parents would laugh it off...

    Of course if my friend replied with "monitor" i knew I was in trouble, and i would have to find some excuse to not spend the night. It was not that we would be unable to watch movies, but rather the movies we would be able to watch would be BORING and have a positive upbeat message to it with no signs of vulgarity for the sake of humor.

    So naturally, I feel like the people with monitors caught onto my guessing game and they would say they had tv as to deceive me. And what they meant by tv was if "need be" and the sporting event on "tv" was big enough, the dad would break out the rabbit ears, but only for then would the monitor actually be a tv.

  2. HA - we had a monitor. It could also transform into TV, but solely for sports. Unfortunately for me, I was never interested in sports so I got shafted. All other genres were out of the question except for Westerns. I think God loves Louis L'Amour and thus the Western genre. At least that's what you believe if you're raised in Pentecost.

    According to what we were allowed to watch, PG was pushing it, unless it was a higher rating due to death, violence and/or decapitation. And if ever we had visitors, the monitor was either put in the closet or hooked up to a video game. Although on vacations it was fine to turn on the TV in hotel rooms.

    I used to go to a friend's house on Sunday afternoons because he had a TV. A real TV. With cable. It used to be a marker of Pentecostal kids - put them in front of a TV and watch their eyes get glued, attention totally focused, world disappear and distractions cease to exist. You could talk to them (us) but they (we) wouldn't hear you unless the TV got turned of. The novelty! The joy! The pure bliss.

    Thank God for the internet and hulu. Now everyone has access and no one's judging.

  3. I remember the first time my parents bought a dvd. It's funny because the dvd had to be watched on a computer for we had no dvd player hooked up to our video game monitor. Some months after that my dad decided that it was in our best interest to purchase a vhs/dvd player since a lot of the films at goodwill are vhs and not dvd. Not long after we purchased bunny ears which failed us because we lived out in the country and reception was awful. We now have full blown cable god forbid and I love it. I'm able to get home from work and just zone out, it completely wastes my time and I feel horrible but I love "the soup" and CSI, how can I not watch? As for nostalgia, I remember when I was just a young'n and the Detroit Red Wings were in Stanley Cup finals. It was the early 2000's and we had not even purchase a "monitor" yet. My parents took us out and payed for a hotel room for the night so we could watch the Stanley Cup game. Soooooo sad:)

  4. I came into this thing as a teenager and there have occasionally been things that my friends who'd grown up in church reminisce about that I never experienced, causing me to feel a bit left out--this is not one of them. Thank goodness my family made sure we had tv wherever we moved (even Jordan, which meant a lot of bad Turkish tv).

  5. Joel, you are the best/worst person in the world! Actually the sarcasm and wit in this site is fantastic. God bless you old friend.

  6. Dear Corey,

    It is with great enthusiasm that I read your comment, knowing you wrote it. However, I must point out that it was not I who wrote the post to which you commented on, but rather fellow SAL blogger Chantell. That said your complements are well received. Your church is near to my heart in spite of the distance.


  7. I too see the humor/irony/"whatever else you want to call it" in the transition that the UPCI has made in relation to the TV issue.

    I have noticed that most churches do not publicly preach against the ole "1-eye-devil" anymore... at least the ones that realize that if you preach against it, you will have to preach against the internet, radio, and where ever else bad content can be consumed.

    However, what I have seen is that a lot of churches (and church members) are turning a blind eye to media that is being consumed.

    I personally try be very selective and careful of what I take in through my eyes and ears, but even in the "family" shows on TV (or Hulu) there is plenty of foul language, sensuality, violence, and immorality. I am not throwing stones, because I am soooo far from perfect on this issue.

    Here is my question...

    Does the church need to dive in and actually teach the Biblical guidelines for what we allow into our hearts? Instead of just laughing it off or turning a blind eye, do we need to take a hard look at what God's word says vs. what we "think" is ok.

    Maybe it's just me, but there seems to be a void in this area. We laugh about it, but a lot of evil gets pumped into our Apostolic hearts through media...

  8. Oh, so funny :) Love this one. Maybe a little more than I should because just recently (ok, around Christmastime), I had someone vehemently deny that the lovely 40-something-inch TV mounted above their fireplace was, in fact, a television. OH NO, it was a MONITOR!!!!! (snap)

    More snickering over Ryan’s comment about how Pentecostal kids (of old – surely not today’s young’uns) would become Insta-Zombies in front of the TV. I was one of those…

    And even more snickering over Anonymous’ family spending a night in a hotel to watch TV! That’s just hilarious!!! :) Thank you for sharing, seriously.

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