Friday, February 13, 2015

My Thoughts on 50 Shades of Grey

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Okay, I know this is going to be a controversial topic because people have opinions all over the place for all sorts of different reasons, but I'm not setting out to judge anyone who watches the movie or reads the book because that's their choice to make. I am just voicing my opinion on the whole thing and the way the world is reacting to it. 
Because my faith is very important to me, I made the choice a long time ago not to read the books. Same goes for the movie. Not saying that if you read the books then your faith isn't important to you, just saying that that was my personal choice. I will say, however, that just like everyone else, I was tempted, and curious, about what all the hype was about, and I considered it for a long time before I finally decided against it. I also decided against it because I blush reading Judy Blume books and there aint no way I was gonna make it through a single chapter without turning into a red-faced mess in a giggle fit, but that's neither here nor there. 
Those things aside, I think it's important to talk about why I didn't read it and why I won't be seeing the movie. The first reason being that I strive to be of pure heart and mind, as I believe God would want me to be, and I don't think that reading that and watching it on the big screen would be conducive to that. I've been reading tons of comments on other people's blog posts and Facebook statuses and one of the best was this... 
"I just wonder, with Christ in your heart, are you willing to take him to 50 Shades of Grey and eat popcorn and kick back watching it with him?"
Wow, is what I thought about that. It makes so much sense when you put it in that perspective because almost everyone you ask that question would say no. I think of God as a sort of loving grandfather figure both when I pray and when I talk about him. I see him as the grandfather that's always around when you need to talk or need help getting out of a sticky situation, very understanding and wise, but also holds you to a high standard and even though he still loves you just as much, is disappointed in you when you do what you shouldn't...or in this case what he's asked you not to.
One of my favorite verses, Phillipians 4:8, says, 
"Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things"...and I can't reconcile that with seeing 50 Shades. I just can't. Because I don't see it being any of those things.
I'm not saying that I'd be condemned if I did. I wholeheartedly believe that God would love me walking out of the theatre just as much as he did walking in, but I still can't be okay with going to see it because I know he wouldn't want me to. Not because he is trying to keep me from fun things or control me, but because he knows what's best for me, just like my grandfather does, and so even though I have free will, he still advises me and hopes I'll follow his lead all the same. And it's really just not worth it. I don't want those images, or feelings, or thoughts in my head ever, but especially not later when I'm actually in a relationship and it really matters. 
I've heard a lot of criticism about it from a marriage stand point, that I absolutely agree with, this one especially, but that obviously doesn't apply to me now, so I can't comment on it. I can however, say that regardless of marital or religious status, I think we can all agree that the relationship that Christian and Ana share is not normal and it's not something that as a Christ follower I want to support, in book form, in movie form, or in real life form. 
I've voiced my opinions on porn to my friends in my "outside the blog" life, but from everything else I've ever said on this thing, I'm sure y'all can already guess what they are. (If you're still wondering I'm totally in the "you shouldn't watch porn because it's harmful to your expectations of guys/girls, sex, etc." camp and also it's a huge money maker for the sex trafficking industry - supply and demand and all that, so it's a no from me). And no, I'm not saying it because I'm a judgmental hypocrite or a prude (cause yeah, I get called both all the time), I'm saying it because I'm really seriously concerned at why this movie that contorts sex and relationships into this freaky, controlling thing instead of a loving, safe, intimate thing is so wildly popular, and I see the roots of that popularity in the way society makes it seem like it's completely normal for guys and girls to watch porn because, hey, it's a normal part of growing up, right? and 'boys will be boys'. No. 100 times no, for all the same reasons I'm not supporting the 50 Shades of Grey franchise. 
And it's hard to swallow, I get it, because people who have read the books/plan on seeing the movie feel personally attacked when someone criticizes it, but that's not what's happening. People are trying to minimize the point of the movie (entertainment from soft core porn if we're going to call a spade a spade) into this irrelevant thing that has nothing to do with God or anything else, but that's done just to not face the bigger picture...That this movie has everything to do with the way sex, and domestic violence, and relationships, and porn are seen in the world today and those are hard issues to face when all you really wanted to do was go see a movie with your friends on Valentine's Day. And I get that it's awkward and embarrassing to be the one who stands up and says no, I'm not going to go see it, but someone's got to. There are more important things.
I think it falls on our shoulders to make a choice. For religious reasons or not, to be better than that. To be better than doing something because Jamie Dornan (Christian Grey) is hot, or because everyone else is going, or because it's really tempting and you're an adult who can do as they please. What you do with your body and your time is your choice, and it's not my place to judge or criticize those who choose to go, because I don't believe God would want me to do that either, but I can ask you to think about it. Think about why you want to go see that movie and what sorts of messages in society you might be supporting alongside it. And then decide what you want to do.
As for me, I'll be spending Valentine's Day with my family and spreading as much love and encouragement to them and all my friends as possible!
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