What if the noise of godless media is drowning out the voice of God? Not all media is bad... but maybe the distraction away from God is making harder to hear and see God at work.
This is a journey of a group of high school students who have committed to take 30 days to focus on God through God-centered media. This includes TV, movies, books, magazines, smart phone apps, and many social media outlets.
Here, you can follow theirstories, their lives, and their challenges. Feel free to leave comments and encouragement.
Being deprived of something does not come easily today. Most everything we want comes at just about the push of a button. Just like deprived of certain foods can help our health, being deprived of social media can help improve our overall attitude and focus on God. Sure we have our favorite T.V show that might put us in a happy mood or that one song that we could play on repeat singing and dancing to, but it never gives us the same kind of joy of that when we are singing and dancing and spending time with God. He has given me the gift and love of music, which will be the most challenging media for me to give up, but thank goodness for worship music! I am looking forward to being deprived and listening more to what God has to say to me, rather than the world.
He replied, “Blessed rather are those who hear the word of God and obey it.”
What's Sup yall! My name is Shantaniece Bonnard I am a freshmen at church but in school i am in 8th grade. This is my first time doing the media fast and I kinda love it. At first it was really hard. I can't tell you how many times I wanted to watch something on Youtube or listen to a secular song. Even though it's only been a few days I have already started to change my adittude towords my mom and I'm also being more grateful for everythig God has done for me. I also found this really cool thing called laminin. Its literally the coolest thing you'll every see, Laminin protine is a fibrous protein present in the basal lamina of the epithelia. So basically without it we'd literally fall apart. Oh and did I mention it looks like this. Colossians 1:17 says "By Him all things are held together."
Well, Tad just went to sleep. It's the time of night when we turn on the TV while we look at our phones and relax for a few minutes, or hours until we go to sleep. It has been interesting the last few nights, not turning on the TV just sitting in the relative quiet with Allie and Jedidiah. I love that I am taking time to hear the wind and rain outside, to think about what God has in the future and dreaming bigger in the last two days than I feel like I have for the last several months. I'm still in the "this is great" phase, I am sure that I will be begging for some TV or Instagram or Facebook soon. I love reading through your posts and seeing how God is already working.
Hi! My name is Braden Chandler and I go to Arcade Middle School. I am in eighth grade. I am here to talk about my first few days on the Media Fast. I gave up TV, video games and social media. I am replacing it with God-related items, such as reading the Bible and writing in a gratitude journal. This is hard, but I am feeling closer to God and not as bogged down as normal. I am hoping to build a better relationship with God and take a break from everything that is useless.
My name is Audrey Chandler and I am in 6th grade at Arcade Middle School. Today is my third day on the Media Fast. It's been really hard for me because today I was invited to a sleepover, but didn't feel comfortable going because it was going to be a Movie Night. I didn't want to break my Media Fast promise. I like to use my phone, so I have put all of my apps into two folders, one I can go on, and the other one, I can't. This has been great because when I open my phone, the home screen reminds me of the Media Fast. During the Media Fast, my goal is to become closer to God by reading my Bible, which I have been doing a lot! I can't wait to see what God has planned for me this month!
The weather in these past few days has been incredible, hasn't it? I mean, Sacramento really should get an award for the most wishy-washy weather to ever exist, because one minute it's showering and windy and the next minute it's bright and sunny and only slightly breezy. And only a couple weeks ago it was in the 70s. Crazy! It's been amazing to see the power of God in the weather and realize that He really is in control of everything, even if it doesn't seem like that.
Our lives can definitely seem like the unpredictable weather sometimes. They are sunny and bright in some moments and then change to crazy storms in an instant. With all this unpredictability it's wonderful to have a steady Hand in our lives that has control of everything. Sometimes, though, we can turn to the wrong things to steady ourselves, such as secular media, and we end up getting more lost than when we started. I know that I've definitely let Snapchat become a major distraction in my life, and though this is my fourth year doing the fast, giving up my social media and secular music is very difficult - which is something I didn't expect. But life is like that, and I know that God has set up this Media Fast exactly the way He wants it for each and every one of us.
Each of us is entering this fast at a different stage in life and will likely come out of it learning something different. But I believe that each of us will be touched by God's grace and overflowing love in incredible ways - ways we never could've imagined. And that's the amazing thing about God! He knows everything about us and wants the very best for us, and He has orchestrated a perfect plan for our lives and will lead us on the path to redemption because He loves us so much - much more than we could ever imagine. So even though the media fast is going differently than I thought it would go, I can rest assured that it's going exactly the way God wants it to go. How incredible is that?
Thanks to all of our sponsors who are supporting us prayerfully and/or financially: you help so much, and it's nice to know that there are others out there who want to support this idea of a "media fast" and the people who are doing it! Happy fasting, everyone! Remember: God made you special, and He loves you very much!
Hi, my name is Ethan Prevatt. I go to Katherine Albiani Middle School and I’m in 8th grade. As soon as I heard about the media fast, I thought for sure that it would be very easy, as I am not addicted to media. But, as I am going through this, I’m realizing how hard it is. When my family starts watching something, I have to remove myself from the room or else I will start watching. It is also hard not being able to text my friends, but it definitely isn’t as hard as not watching TV. I am looking forward to seeing God in my life in these next 30 days!
Hi, I'm Aleksandra. I'm a 6th grader at COA Elementary. This is my first time doing a media fast and it's very tempting to listen to music or watch movies with family. I honestly didn't think it would be this hard because I'm not that attached to media but, I've found it to be pretty hard. Even though it sucks to be missing out, I kind of enjoy it. I am working on the scriptures and going through them. Since I have a lot of free time now, I've been reading the Bible more often than I used to. I'm excited to see what God has in store for me for the next 30 days.
The media fast is back once again. I am so excited for this years fast and connecting with everyone involved. I had the amazing experience of ending February with winter camp with the middle schoolers. It was beautiful and incredible to get to connect with a wonderful group of kids while growing closer to God myself. I couldn't have asked for a better bridge into the media fast. The media fast is simple in theory and deceptively easy. Most people I talk to don't understand how easy it is to put away media. I personally spend a lot of time listening to music and nothing compares to worship music. It is amazing how a playlist of songs can change your mindset. The simple act of replacing my normal playlists with Christian ones has already made this week so much better. Putting away secular media is easy because of how rewarding it is. It is indescribable, the effect of focusing on God and his glory and actively working to grow closer to him. It not only improves my daily routines but i also believe the quality of life. Putting away these things of the world, like social media, tv, and music, it puts in perspective how little these things matter. It forces me to compare the shortlived rewards of nonsensical entertainment and the spiritual benefits of devoting oneself to God, two things that don't even go on the same scale.
I think another really important aspect of the media fast is the opportunity to spread the gospel through it. When you're friends ask you why you haven't been on instagram or why you cant listen to that new song, it is so easy to say I'm doing a media fast with my youth group and have a conversation wit them about it. Over the past three years i have had some pretty incredible conversations with people because of the media fast. It is such an easy tool to use to talk to people whether they do or don't know Jesus, about what you believe.
My prayers go out to those in the fast and everyone who is supporting it, our pastors, parents, sponsors, and supporters. I love hearing everyone's stories and I hope that as this month continues we continue sharing and talking. I am so excited to continue this media fast and find out more and more about God, his grace, and myself as I do every year. I hope that we all have the chance to feel the benefits of the media fast and grow closer together in fellowship.
"Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect." Romans 12:2 ESV version
I found this verse from a handout Matt gave us from a while back called "Emergency Memory Verses". It gives out the perfect verses that can relate to you when you are either worried, don't know what to do, when you feel alone, angry, feel like a failure, and so many more. This particular verse is for when you feel peer pressure and I think this verse is perfect for the media fast because we will all go through moments where we want to listen to other music, check our Snapchat or any other social media, its especially hard when you're with friends who aren't doing the media fast and go on see them go on their phones to check their social media at any given time. But this also gives you an eye-opener of seeing how many people instinctively fall onto checking their phones. And perhaps once this media fast ends, we stop our habits of checking our phones so often.
Well I am praying for all of those who are doing the media fast. You guys have committed to something that is quite the challenge especially in today's day and age. But this media fast is an eye opener and will change your way of seeing yourself and catching on to distractions.It won't be easy but I believe in you and you will make it through the month of March. Good luck!
Here's another verse you can look up on your own time when you are tempted: James 4:7
Hi! My name is Camille Kistner and I am super excited to be participating in my first media fast. Today is the second day and I already feel separated from the secular world and I am loving it. I think it's going to get harder as it goes on to stay away from some of my favorite music and tv shows. I hope that during these 30 days, I will develop new habits and when the media fast is over, that I won't go back to my old habits of constantly having to be busy checking social media. I can't wait to see what God is going to do in the lives of all of us doing this fast!!
Hi, my name is Anna Jewell. This is the first time I will be taking part in the media fast. I am very excited for this month because I spend so much of my time using media and without it I hope to grow closer to God. During this month my goal is to lose some of my habits that take up so much of my time, such as constantly checking social media. And also to create new habits, like consistently reading my bible and doing a daily devotional. I can't wait to see the results of this month! Please pray for me to have the mental strength to complete the fast and to use the time I would spend using media to grow closer to God.
Hi my name is Jessica! I am a 6th grader at bridgeway island k-8 and I am both excited and nervous to do this media fast! I’m looking forward to connecting with God more and making a habit out of connecting with Him whether it’s on the media fast or not. I can’t wait to see what God has in store for me in the next 30 days... i find it hard to not always text my friends or go on some sort of media, so this is definitely a change that I can’t wait to see what God will do in my life. I’ve been doing the devotions and memorizing the verse for the week. Again, I am both excited and nervous about these 30 days of the media fast but I feel that I will do fine with God’s help!
Hey, my name is Rachel Ganaga and I am a 6th grader at Silverado. As most of the kids in middle school this is my first time doing the Media Fast and I'm excited to get closer to God and become stronger in his word. Even though it has only been a couple days I find it harder and harder to stay away from secular media. But, I've found that doing the daily devotion and memorizing the verse helps a lot because it gives you something important to think about. This is a new to me and I'm really excited for what God has planned for the next 30 days. Thanks for all the support.
Hey guys my name is Sophya. I am a junior at El Camino and this is my third time doing the media fast. Doing the media fast is something difficult for me because it’s become such a habit to check social media whenever I feel bored when it’s during class, lunch, home, anywhere where I am not doing anything that isn’t hands on. But I always thank myself for pulling through the month of March and step away from any secular media that districts me from God because it makes me realize how many things are sending a wrong message or inappropriate on whatever is trending when I do come back on social media and realize it’s something that is so common that we see everyday which is crazy and upsetting to think of. These past two days I’ve had so much more time on my hands. It’s actually really nice because my phone is such a time hogger. I’ve been finding new Christian music that I actually enjoy listening to. Please pray for me that I look up to God in times of boredom and do something with that time to either read the Bible, journal, find new music, anything that is focused on God and that I will maintain my focus for him.
I haven't even made it through the whole day today and I feel like I have had several extra hours to focus on God. I drove to San Francisco today to pick up Craig and Dann while I listened to half a book on church leadership, then I listened to two podcasts that really challenged me to think about God.
To top that off it was all while I was driving through a crazy storm and then into the beautiful sunshine. I am excited for the next 30 days. I know that the excitement will turn to frustration and then hopefully to a new normal.
My name is Jacob Ganaga and I am a 8th grader at Silverado Middle School. I am both really exited and nervous for this media fast. I have never done this before so this will be a hole new experience for me so..., I don't know exactly what to expect. One thing I know for sure is that it will be hard letting go all of my cellular media and using my free time for God. But, I truly hope (and determined) I can redirect my focus to God and grow stronger with him. I plan to do the devotions we were given and read the bible a lot more often than I probably ever did. Not only that but I also have a playlist on Spotify and some movies picked out for the media fast. Like I said earlier I am both exited and nervous but I can't wait to see what God is going to show during the next 30 days!
My name is Zachary Lenhart and this is the beginning of my second media fast. I did the media fast last year and was thankful that it opened my eyes to see the negative aspect that the media plays in our lives every day. Since going through the media fast last year, I have cut back on my usage of media (except for music) tremendously. However, I know that the media still changes my focus from God to unimportant things. I am looking forward to another month away from all secular media and to turn my full attention to God. During this fast, it will be very difficult for me to not listen to country music or to watch television (probably basketball) every day because they are things that I enjoy doing and have a habit of doing. Overall, I know that the fast will benefit me and help me grow closer to God which I am really happy about, but it will be a struggle for at least a few days if not each and every day. I wish everyone who is doing the fast good luck and I know that we can all do this together!
My name is Jeremiah, and this is my first time ever doing a media fast. My older brother, who is a junior, has done it before, and I am super excited to grow in my relationship with God and not let media or anything else get in my way of learning about our wonderful God. I have done the stay 2 serve twice and I'm looking forward to help little children come to see, hear and follow our Lord. After all, our goal at Arcade Church is to get as many people to see, hear, and follow Jesus. I even looked up a bible verse about it.
Psalm 119:133 Direct my footsteps according to your word; let no sin rule over me.
I am Liana, I'm a 7th grader and I'm ready to take away all distractions and media that interrupts my relationship with God. Its also my first time doing the media fast. I'm really passionate for this! I think getting off of social media will get everyone closer to god and help the relationship get stronger and better. In fact i found a verse that helps me personally focus on God Romans 8:5 "For those who live according to flesh set their minds on things of the flesh,but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit." ♡I hope i can grow stronger with God♡
First time doing this with the church, not my first time ever media fasting though. Im really excited to do my homework AND sleep, a cool combo that I think could be helpful; but more than anything im excited to grow in my religion. I've got books of the bible, spotify playlists, and even video games about God that will help me to not use any secular media and become closer to God. I hope God will help me through the next 30 days. Colossians 3:5!
My name is Nathan Hatfield and I have been going to Arcade church my whole life. I love growing through the church and learning more about God every time I show up on Sundays but whenever I went home I would always go straight to my room take off my "church clothes" and turn on the T.V. to watch football. As I started listening to pastor Matt and pastor Craig I realized that worshiping God isn't supposed to be meant for one day its supposed to be meant for all days. After realizing this I saw that whenever I got home I would breakaway from God and put technology before him. Now I have joined the media fast so when I get home I won't be able to play games or watch sports I will be able to stay with God and remember and give thanks for all he's given me. I believe that during these 30 days of fasting my faith in God will rise and grow extremely. I do have to admit I love to play video games and listen to music other than christian but I am so happy to give that up for someone more important and all giving. I am hoping that after the fast I will take some of it and apply it everyday,maybe cut back on things that I don't need and not going straight to the T.V. after church.
I hope the other people who are doing this for the first time like me understand and know that this is so important and it will be super good for us. I am praying for everyone and hoping temptation doesn't persuade others to break free from this fast.
I am a Junior and I have done the Media Fast almost my whole life (been doing it for 15 years) so I would say I'm pretty used to it by now. This would be my 4th official year doing the media fast and going on the missions trip. I have decided to challenge myself this year and go 2 1/2 months instead of just thirty days. I actually started my media fast on February 8th and plan on going till April 30th. I have given up all media like Instagram, and Facebook. I have also decided to fast from online shopping/browsing because I often find myself browsing for things I don't need.(which I never end up buying anything) Every year I give up music and movies that don't focus on God...but this year since I started in February I "had" to watch the Olympics. My family is kinda Olympic "junkies" and we love watching just about every sport. But now since the Olympics are over I am now giving up all TV and music not focused on God. I am exited to see what God is going to show me through this 82 day fast.
As I go into my second time of Media Fast, I am both excited and anxious. I know that I will have more free time, be disappointed I can't listen to new music, but overall grateful for the experience. In the last couple of weeks, I have struggled with the idea of life after death. I know heaven exists, but I can't even begin to imagine the idea of "eternity," and sometimes that scares me. I will be grateful to grow closer to God and learn from the experience, and hopefully He will be able to help me out with this. I will be giving up all social media as I feel this is important in my media time. Before last year's media fast, I spent a lot of time on social media, but since then more of my time has been spent on more worthy things. I hope the outcome is the same this year but with Netflix. Can't wait to see how it turns out! Life is a journey
Hello, my name is Jordan Gilbert, I am a Freshman and this is my first year doing the Media Fast. I am excited to fast from all secular media for a whole month. I am usually on YouTube, social media, and video games a lot so I am happy for a chance to drop all of that and focus on God for the month of March. My goals for the next thirty days are to learn more and grow closer to God and learn to take a step back from everything in the world.
To help me stay away from the temptations of media I have turned off and moved all of my secular apps to a folder. Since I get bored very easily I have downloaded apps on my phone that are about the Bible, they teach you more about the Bible and God while helping you memorize Bible verses. A hard part for me is at school, there are always people playing music and there are several classes that music is required for presentations.
This is the first time that I will be doing this and I wish everyone good luck and I will be praying for everyone doing the fast.
For those who don't know me, my name is Katie Green, and I am a former high school student that was reasonably involved in Arcade Church. On June 26, I graduated from high school, and on June 27, I moved south to San Luis Obispo. I moved because I was offered a full-time position with a company, and I felt that it would be a really great experience to prepare myself for the rest of life. It was a very abrupt change, and I know that it caused a lot of confusion and bitterness in some areas, but I'm at the beginning of a very different chapter of my life, and I'm really excited about it, and it's my hope that other people will be just as excited and supportive. To clarify, I did move by myself, and being a minor, I have had a billion issues arrive from being alone. Just a couple weeks ago I went to the San Luis Obispo library hoping to use a specific computer program... I couldn't even get a library card without a parent's signature. I've had other complications as well, but I've been fortunate to surround myself with some really amazing people. I found a church that I absolutely love, a bible study/church group that I'm interested in, and a small handful of girls, mentors, coworkers, etc. that I really look up to and enjoy. Regardless, I miss the people in Sacramento, and lots of things are really different and weird right now. My goal this month (since that's what the actual prompt asks) is to solidify my identity as a person here by centering back and solidifying my foundation in Christ. I don't have any real attachments to faith based communities like I did in Sacramento, so I think I will do a lot of learning and growing and defining in the next month. Also, having a more set schedule for the first time in my life, I want to put things into my calendar like bible time and journal time (and once things are in my calendar now... they ABSOLUTELY get done). Aside from scheduling, I'm going to do something called growthTRACK starting in March with the church that I've been attending. It's like a class sort of thing that helps you find a fit in the church. It seems like they could potentially have a worship need which is something I really miss, and I'm really excited to see what comes out of the class and the month in general. I'm a little lost and not very updated in regards to the media fast right now, so please be considerate if it takes me a minute to understand exactly what all is going on if you contact me. And I seriously encourage anyone/everyone to contact me! I miss people so much and I'd love to get an email from a friend or from a stranger and just talk to them. My email is email@example.com If this blog was sort of sporadic and unstructured, I apologize, but I will happily fill in gaps via email or via another requested blog post. Thanks everyone!!