Why waste your time?
2 Tim. 3:16, “All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness…”. A few years ago, pre-COVID, a wildly popular digital game took the world by storm. Named “Pokemon Go,” it had more than 5 million US players per day and boasted 21 million downloads just a few months after its release. At the pinnacle of its popularity in 2015, a mind-blowing 250 million people played it monthly. By 2020 there was still a staggering 65 million downloads per month. The game’s goal was to download the Pokemon Go app and then use your smartphone to look for Pokemon characters that did not exist. That’s right; you had to look for characters that did not exist by traveling around your city, state, or even the country to capture them.
You were then able to trade the characters that did not exist for candy/prizes that did not exist. You were even able to enter a gym that did not exist to fight other gamers’ characters that, you guessed it, did not exist. Of course, this is an oversimplification of the game, but it is not far off from the truth. People have even died crossing streets while intently looking at their smartphones in an attempt to spot a character. There are also reports of a few couples getting divorced because one of them became so obsessed with the game. Some villains even hid in remote areas and attacked unsuspecting players because they knew they would come looking for those characters. No other game in history has been “bigger” than Pokemon Go. The average time players spent online playing the game was more than 12 hours a day. How many hours a day do people study the Bible?
Can you imagine if there was an app called “Bible Go” that has 250 million users playing it daily for an average of 12 hours per day? Now that would be something. I can never understand why someone would invest so much of their time in a game with no real value. Why not spend that energy on the one thing with the biggest prize of all. After all, the reward of spending that kind of time dedicated to Christ will allow you to collect rewards for eternity instead of some make-believe prize. And instead of fictional characters, you will receive invaluable information to help you navigate the minefields called temptation and sin, information that will serve you in tangible ways in the real world. Many of the same people who spent hours a day playing the game would not spend five minutes reading their Bible or praying. They still know the names of those pointless little gaming characters that do not exist but know almost nothing of the actual characters in the Bible.
They became excited and messaged, texted, and talked to anyone who cared to listen to them as they carried on about that “amazing” game, and some even had Pokemon Go parties. They invited friends to drive around with them to catch these nonexistent characters, but could not speak to their friends about Christ, much less invite them to church. Unfortunately, the addiction trapped not only teens – many adults played as well. There is something wrong with the world when people are more interested in catching and trading fictional characters than knowing the Bible. Why would you waste so much time doing nothing constructive rather than learning about and working toward your salvation? I am pretty sure gamers will not be able to trade Pokemon Go characters for salvation points in heaven.