In no particular order…
1. Explaining to Christian Friends
Some of us have grown up with very fundamentalist Christian backgrounds. Some of our friends have very, very conservative ideas about video games. That’s okay. I mean, I am pretty conservative myself, but I like video games and see them as harmless. Not every brother in Christ will share that opinion though. The trick is to still treat them like a brother in Christ and not hold them in contempt. They have their beliefs, and we should respect that. It just is annoying if they ever argue that the games that you are playing are sinful, and it is even tougher if you are young enough to still be living with parents, and they are the ones who are against games.
2. Learning to Balance Time
Games are fun, but Christianity has a lot to with balance. “For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven” (Ecclesiastes 3:1). Video games help us relax, and they help us experience other’s creativity. They are fun, and there is nothing wrong with fun. Sometimes, though, gaming can get in the way of responsibilities and even get in the way of our relationship with God. As a Christian gamer, it can be a struggle to keep that balance.
3. Dealing with other Gamers
Most of the time, the gaming culture is a welcoming and fun-centered community, but no matter where you go, there can be hate. Whether online, in videos, or meeting other gamers in person, non-Christian gamers can be insulting to the concerns of the Christian faith and not understand the issues we may have. There is a large liberal atheist community in gaming, and they can routinely insult Christians and out beliefs as a form of humor. We can also get unfairly lumped in with politicians who try to enforce gaming bans in the name of religion. Overall, gamers are friendly, but dealing with people always brings the risk of disagreement.
4. Managing the Conscience
One thing non-Christians can not understand is the demands of the Holy Spirit. Many Christians do not really understand or follow their own conscience. The thing is, a certain game could be completely fine for one Christian without bothering them at all, while the Holy Spirit can convict another Christian strongly against playing that same game. The Holy Spirit can convict you against the content of a certain game because it will lead you to sin, and it can be tough to figure out exactly what the Holy Spirit is convicting you of.
5. Going to Church After Staying up Late
This is a less serious one, but a genuine struggle. We’ve all been there. Up late saturday night, enjoying our weekend and playing through level after level. Tomorrow is not a work or school day, so it can be hard to remember that there’s church in the morning. Maybe we are playing online with friends who plan on sleeping through the rest of the day, but we have something to do in the morning. We need to fellowship with other believers, we need to put money in the offering plate to support missions, and we need encouragement and conviction from our pastor. Those things are hard after a long night of gaming, though.