Tomorrow’s the day.
The movie thousands have been waiting for: 50 Shades of Grey.
I can’t log on to Facebook without seeing “I can’t wait to see this movie!” My almost 15-year-old daughter told me yesterday that many of her friends (aged 14-16) are planning to see this movie with friends or boyfriends on Valentine’s Day.
Ladies, please help me to understand why you would want your teen girl to watch this movie. Please tell me why you want to see this movie. Before you bristle and leave this post…will you please stop and think with me a moment?
I originally posted most of the following on June 26, 2012, after reading the book. Two and a half years later, I feel the same way – perhaps even more so because my daughter is dating. Because she’s no longer a carefree 12-year-old, but a teen girl facing the challenges teen girls face. And, I am no longer married. I am single woman who must guard her children and her heart as she navigates singleness again.
My friends and I like to talk about gray areas, black areas, and white areas. We like to say “that’s a black and white issue” or “that’s a gray area.”
When it comes to 50 Shades of Grey, there is no shortage of discussion on the black, white, and gray of it. Many authors, bloggers, and interviewers are chiming in – for good reason.
This book is a New York Times Bestseller and about to become a blockbuster movie. But, this is not a gray area – it’s very black and white.
I read book one. Ok, “read” might be an overstatement. I read the first five chapters then began swiping my iPhone screen in search of a plot (or anything redeeming). I did at least scan every single page. As a writing teacher, I could share about its lack of literary merit all day long, but the poor writing and lack of plot aren’t harmful to my soul.
The language and imagery are harmful. The images flashing across the screen would be too.
50 Shades of Grey is referred to as “mommy porn” for a reason. The book’s description and movie’s portrayal of sex and relationship are not at all what God intended. What God created to be beautiful, this book makes very ugly.
I regret reading it. But, regret can’t wipe away those words from my eyes or those images from my brain.
Before you purchase this book or a movie ticket, I hope you pray. I hope you search your heart and ask…Why do I want to see this? Is this good and right for me?
For me, it boils down to Proverbs 4: 20-27: My son, pay attention to what I say; turn your ear to my words. Do not let them out of your sight, keep them within your heart; for they are life to those who find them and health to one’s whole body. Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it. Keep your mouth free of perversity; keep corrupt talk far from your lips. Let your eyes look straight ahead; fix your gaze directly before you. Give careful thought to the paths for your feet and be steadfast in all your ways. Do not turn to the right or the left;keep your foot from evil.
I want to guard my heart, giving careful thought to my path, keeping my foot from evil. I am so easily swayed in some areas that I must look straight ahead with my gazed fixed directly on Him and the cross if I am to avoid drifting.
So, I hope you’ll guard your heart from this book and movie – and others like it. It’s best to dwell on whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable–if anything is excellent or praiseworthy… Philippians 4:8…although I know it’s hard and only possible with strength from Him.
Let me clarify one thing: I am FOR you. I don’t desire to make a point. I’d like to make a difference.
I am not “holier than thou.” Heavens. I have logs in my eye that need removed before I can ever speak on many issues. My heart is simply to share as one who has read the book and knows the content. To tell those who have not read this book and want to see the movie: Please do your homework before going. To tell those who have read the book and feel guilty (like me) – or go to see the movie and feel guilty: There’s grace and forgiveness.
And, please, don’t take my word for it. Pray. Read the stuff all over the internet.
Honestly, I simply could not – in good conscience – let tomorrow’s release day pass without speaking up. It hurts my heart to think of all the young gals who will see it and think that is how a man should treat her. It hurts my heart to think of all the young men who will see it and think that is how they should treat a gal.
(And, please don’t say…it’s just entertainment; no one really patterns behavior after a movie. Yes, they do – sadly.)
I want better for my daughter. I want better for this next generation. I want better for you. I want better for me.
If you have an opinion about 50 Shades of Grey, would you share it in the comments? I think conversing – even if online – about this topic in a respectful, open manner can help us and our daughters.