Photo credit: Daily Mail
There’s a lot of young people out there who love playing video games. Many Christian parents are okay with that. Some don’t let their kids play at all. Others are strict on what they expose their kids to. As a child or teenager growing up in a Christian home with parents who limit what games they are allowed to play, it can be frustrating and hard, especially if you have friends that play games you are not allowed to.
To share some insight into what growing up in that environment is like is my friend, Josh. Josh grew up homeschooled with conservative Christian parents. He has always loved video games since he was a child, and considers himself a gamer to this day.
I asked him a few questions about his life growing up.
Q: What’s your favorite game?
A: The Halo franchise is my favorite, and I am partial to the first one, Halo: Combat Evolved.
Q: What rules did your parents have when you were growing up?
A: My parents were conservative, traditionalist Christians. They did not want to expose me or my siblings to anything with sexual content or too much language. When I was younger, I was not allowed to play overly violent games either. The first shooter I could play was Halo, that’s probably part of the reason it is my favorite game.
Q: Was it hard for you growing up without being able to play the games you wanted?
A: Not so much as a child, but when I went into Junior High, things were a little tougher, especially because I had friends who were able to play games that I was not allowed to. It was good for me to learn obedience though. That’s why we have parents. Learning to obey them helps us obey God in the future.
Q: When did your parents become more lenient with their rules?
A: Once I got into high school, my parents stopped really caring what I exposed myself to. I had gained their trust, and was able to make more decisions for myself because I had shown that I could handle it. Once we reach a certain age, it is our responsibility to make decisions on what God expects from us, and I was able to make my own choice about what sort of games I could play without being tempted to sin.
Q: Do you think you will do anything different than your parents when you raise your kids?
A: Not really. I love my parents, and I know that they love me. Their rules were there because they loved me, just like God has rules for us because he loves us. They wanted to make sure that I had a good life, and that I would not have unnecessary temptations. I’m definitely no expert in parenting (I don’t have any kids yet), but I think kids who grow up with no rules and no limitations on their media consumption have it worse off. If a parent does not have rules for their kids, it sends the message that they don’t love or care about them. Childhood years are when we are forming the person we are going to be for the rest of our lives. If parents want their children to grow up with integrity they should limit what they watch, read, listen to, or play.
Josh is currently in college, and is engaged, so he may have the opportunity to parent kids pretty soon!
I personally grew up in a strict home, and just like Josh, I knew I was loved. The games I was allowed to play, I loved, and I do not have any regrets from my childhood at all!
Thank you for reading, and God bless!