Share This Episode
Family Life Today Dave & Ann Wilson, Bob Lepine Logo

Screens and Our Health

Family Life Today / Dave & Ann Wilson, Bob Lepine
The Truth Network Radio
November 3, 2021 2:00 am

Screens and Our Health

Family Life Today / Dave & Ann Wilson, Bob Lepine

On-Demand Podcasts NEW!

This broadcaster has 568 podcast archives available on-demand.

Broadcaster's Links

Keep up-to-date with this broadcaster on social media and their website.

November 3, 2021 2:00 am

Did you know that screens can actually affect your health? David Murrow shares the good, bad, and unexpected effects of screen usage and how to make healthy choices.

Show Notes and Resources

Find resources from this podcast at

Download FamilyLife's new app!

Check out all that's available on the FamilyLife Podcast Network

Truth for Life
Alistair Begg
Destined for Victory
Pastor Paul Sheppard
The Christian Perspective
Chris Hughes
Family Life Today
Dave & Ann Wilson, Bob Lepine
Renewing Your Mind
R.C. Sproul
Destined for Victory
Pastor Paul Sheppard

Okay I don't do this a couple times but I don't think you ever heard me some that really bugs me when we get in the car now all ESA now you know it is no just and you you you always defend yourself and deny it yes what is welcome to family life today where we want to help you pursue the relationships that matter most and Wilson Dave Wilson and you can find or on our family life, family life today when I get in the car and you're driving. I get on my phone to catch up with all the things that I have not caught up on that day, with emails and you hate that I'm all excited I were in a car together.

I've been working on my phone, probably in the house because it's work that we have the Carmichael good. We get to talk and I look over almost every time she's like deleting emails and responded text and then I'm like you always complain about me and this is my time and then seem to work.

So finally I get to say how sorry I now I know are you going to repent or just confess I will repent, I will. You don't have to talk to Jesus and we just need to get some help with this and we got help sitting across the table from us in the studio. David Morrow is back with us. David, the author of why men hate church which was a blockbuster book 15 years ago; yet 2005 yeah was great book. I love the change may change their church.

I'm sure change many churches and many men and you know really brought some insight into a church world and really the world with the men and spirituality is just thank you that was such a great read on and aimed at a firm for Father's Day for yeah and this potato is something that's really helpful and it will have a great impact on our churches on our homes, our families, in our society.

This one's called drowning in screen time looking at me like I'm drowning when spring to get its read to subtitle the subtitle is really interesting because I think it's exactly what were were hoping to help people with a lifeline. So this book can be a lifeline for adults, parents, teachers and ministers who want to reclaim their real lives and obviously in that subtitle you're getting at.

What's going on. We been talking about it this week of we sort of lost our real lives often because we live and not a fantasy but we live in a screen world that isn't real so it's been earliest. And yet one thing to do and there's you talk about five parables, yes that you sorta used to teach different things and what we were talking earlier about the four brothers yeah help us understand the four brothers and how I can help us okay so I tell the story of four brothers who lived on a farm and they ate with their hands and fields produced well than the farm fell on hard times and had to be sold so the four brothers moved to the city where they found exotic new foods and so this is what the first brother will who we call moderate. Mike continued eat the same foods in the same amounts. The second brother called excessive Eddie ate healthy foods, but in larger quantities because they were more available. The third brother named dishonorable Dan adopted the citydwellers unhealthy diet and in the fourth brother, who I call addicted Albert ate all foods in excess over time addicted. Albert became ill while excessive Eddie and dishonorable dance other health diminished but moderate Mike remained fit and vigorous. So I tell the story as a diagnostic tool screen time is not the same for everyone. Some people are moderate.

Mike can watch a few TV shows they can check their email, there still heavily invested in real life and it's a healthy activity for them.

Now some people are like excessive Eddie, they're not watching bad content but they watch too much.

As I mentioned in one of our earlier segments. The average American watches nine hours of screen content for entertainment every day, tumbling most of us are excessive eddies were not necessarily watching you.

No pornography or game of thrones, or any of these really nasty television shows.

There's too much and it's making us spiritually fat as it were, were gaining excess calories that we don't need, but there is a lot of us who would be like dishonorable Dan the third brother who eats unhealthy foods and those would be the pornography and the, the, the degrading and cruel content that so available and an addicted Albert would be our fourth brother. He's a guy who just went hogwild and everything and that's would be the complete screen addict immersing the slot like with young men who are addicted to videogame playing more pornography. All young women who are experiencing social media addictions or high levels of anxiety which brother are you are you moderate Mike, are you managing your screen time well are you excessive Eddie, you're not watching the bad stuff but you're watching too much U2 on your screen too much. Are you like the third brother dishonorable Dan, are you dabbling in things that are dragging you down spiritually. Are you flaming people on social media getting angry and cruel and social media, or are you addicted Albert as it is a completely overwhelming your life can we assess that ourselves or to someone else have to assess it like an alcoholic. He has a really hard time admitting for a long time maybe that he even has a drinking problem. So can we see it in ourselves. While I think it's a combination of both.

You know, step one in Alcoholics Anonymous is admitting rather powerless right and so I think there is a role for self examination and revision that has to come first.

But the key is if you hear that from someone else, you got to have the courage to acknowledge it and examine your own heart and take it to the Lord in prayer and say is this really true and I would imagine most the times it would be if you've ever been.

Dave in an accountability group that you guys like this is something your countable with screen.

No, I mean we have with no pornography but not yet attention to think, not really mouthing time like that wouldn't be a bad question ask somebody you trust the butchering time yet.

If you're on your screen you have enough hours a day, what you not doing that you would've been doing in 1980) or 1990, what with those five hours have been devoted to. I think for many of us who follow Jesus there would certainly would've been more prayer absolutely there. There would've been more awareness of people around us who need to know the Lord or who have needs that we can meet. I think a lot of the weakness in our churches today is being brought on by screen time it's the fact that people are simply not aware of the needs around them. They're not praying in the spirit. They're not seeing what God is doing in the world because their eyes are on certain websites yeah and you know when I hear you go through the four brothers immediately. I come excessive.

Eddie Yep, I am too and I Mike this on problem is no big deal, you know.

And yet I've heads like we said earlier, had a six-year-old granddaughter tell me I spent too much on my screen. I've had my way say that. And yet, I just sorta smirking. Go yeah I'm excessive. It is no big deal, but it is a problem is excessive.

Eddie, a gateway drug some cases, it is because you know the of the two brothers who ate foods in excessive and unhealthy foods. Why wouldn't it be a good thing to have more meat if I enjoy video gaming for two hours why he should lie game for four out right yeah I know I was walking somewhere yesterday and my phone was in my pocket and I literally was like I just felt like I live theirs up an appendage of my body that is not with the right now is that prevalent in my life, there's always my left pocket. There's actually a clinical term. No homophobia with that. That's the fear of being disconnected from your phone no homophobia and that is another one Hackett called text of Fredia. That's when you're when you feel phantom buzzes in your pocket. All of us to know I didn't get it. I didn't get a text you actually imagine yourself getting texts and getting notification that is just scary and you guys ever left the house and you can have your phone asking if that happened. Did you go back for your phone on the way to the studio today. I did that exact please you. Did I repent because I've done it before and I've analyze like do I need my phone for something specific like maps. That's a big one in our cars right yeah completely, but I also think back in the day that our phones like a magic like we actually had a map that we held in her hand for you to landing in an airport. I'll meet you at such and such a place.

And then there out there in the up to page them. Yeah I am it's it's a wonderful invention. On one hand, but it's easy to become enslaved by it right. One of things I tell people you were talking about the buzzes and everything if you really want to eliminate a lot of the mindless screen time in your life. Turn the notifications off on your phone because they come from the factory, buzzing, chirping all the notifications whenever you download an app it's going to buzz you to death because he didn't wants your attention. So one of the practical ways you can do that is just go through and what I have an Apple device, but I'm sure it's the same on android is you just go through notification settings and turn off everything you don't want to be instantly notified fund that obviously helps turn off email. I mean even even evil. I'll get text notifications I get maps my travel apps like airlines that I fly and I deftly one of the planes, but other than that I got everything pretty much turned off, let's talk about some of the downsides.

Let's talk about what I like that. I love your one chapter title sleep Irfan and see what screens are doing to our body's what are they doing to our bodies okay so in 1960 at the advent really went television 85% of homes had television swimmers times the average woman wait, I think hundred and 40 pounds average man was about 162 today while today the average woman is 162 and the average man is like 180 or 190 how so you're not saying that screens the absolute preceding in 1940 when we came home we turned on the radio and listen to Jack Benny where he listening to the radio giggling step to move around. Ryan will then with television. It immobilized your body and then things got worse in the 1970s, we got these things called VCRs you remember those hello. You will now even the commercial breaks are gone. Yeah, then the devil created something even worse, which is called a wireless remote straight from the pit of hell this thing. Now you can you can sit there and channel surf change the volume change the input on your TV and never move anything except one thing. How so all this immobility after work, plus the it in its other things to its calorie dense process foods as laborsaving devices like washing machines at garage door openers, but probably the number one reason we are so fat these days is because we call home home from work were exhausted. We sit down on the couch and we told move could be a new way to have a diet just get rid of all your devices right probably trimmed down by lose 10 pounds immediately and it's funny.

I mean all of what you said is true, and yet you know you play this game. Your mind is like I have a fitness app on my phone and I count my calories and I just set it out, but the stats are said is not working for most of us know and also sleepier because we now have these devices that are keeping us up at night back to the 1940s and 1940. The average Americans slept like 7.9 hours and now it's down like 6.8 really, because were on our various devices into the night and not only that but are of devices emit blue light until the 1950s with television. We never saw bluish light at night. We only slightly during that during the day.

Sunlight is a bluish don't realize it. People work in the TV business do can we do professional lighting, but then as evening comes, you have sunset which is more of an orange light and that sends your brain a signal to produce melatonin which is the hormone that causes you to be sleepy firelight same. It's very orange right but in the 1950s.

These devices entered our home is a good bluish light that tells our brain. It's noon now so people like my dad react about my dad in the first second.

Yeah, he would watch TV in the night until the signoff came on and that blue light kept awake maybe don't know what a signoff is think about that, though it was midnight. I think I was saying you don't used to sign off at midnight got 6 AM radio stations the same way now.

TV never signs off right all the screen things were addicted to never end. You know, Facebook and social media scrolls indefinitely. There are no stopping cues that tell us that it's time to stop using our screens and that's by design. So we've talked about being fatter, sleepier, let's talk about sicker because you mention that as well yeah were seeing lots of effects from everything from carpal tunnel to neck injuries from people looking down on their screens in your head is heavy and is meant to ride upright on your neck but if you're constantly looking your phone use your tilted at about 60 so were seeing. Actually, a lot of injuries were seeing eye strain injuries from people looking at their screens, eight, nine hours a day were meant to look at a world that is around us in three dimensions were not meant to look at a great glowing panel in two dimensions so you have a chapter called swipe left house screens are weakening relationships for a family and marriage program so it's all about relationships. So help us. How is this weakening relationships. So if you think about a typical young man or young woman in times past.

A lot of their marriages were arranged or it was just the people in the village that was there pooled their dating pool and were even when the modern dating started in the roaring 20s you still met people at church. She met him in the office you might know a few dozen singles that were available for dating or mating will now with online dating, you have literally thousands of potential mates and dates available to you and so you see these people on your screen. And if you did adapt like tender. I hope you don't, but you can swipe left. If you don't like him and swipe right. If you do and you try to make contact with them.

What it does is it gives our brains the impression that there are zillions of people out there that we can meet and so it makes us less likely to commit and so were seeing this. A lot of young adults are postponing marriage there postponing commitment because they have this impression that pay.

There are so many fish in the sea. Why would I want to catch one. It's also leading to a lot of promiscuity. You know tender is the hook up And that's one of the reasons why were seeing the marriage age. The average age of first marriage going way, way up in 1960 the average woman married at age 20 and the average man married at 22 today is 27 and 29 and it may even be higher than that post pandemic so all this perceived up surplus of mates is suppressing the marriage rate causing men not to commit and making it extra harder for women to find a long-term poor men who are interested in long-term relationships, making harder for them to find long-term partners. I also wonder if it is there in their marriage and their struggling as every marriage dies, but they can always have back in their mind. Maybe somebody that they swiped certain Lane think maybe that was the one people do this and dating all the time. A mean guy I know people who have been ghosted mid date. It's not going well.

The man gets up excuses himself, and he swipes for another hook up 10. This distorted stuff goes all the time.

Screens are really distorting the dating market that was really meant to be rather small nails are so enormous that people are not committing. So what you suggest about that because I know some people that have married and they met online and it's been a great relationship great Mary said, we avoid those at all costs.

These dating apps will again it's it's how you use it in which platforms use a mean tender is built for short-term BUT there are other dating platforms eHarmony Christian mingle that are really more marriage focus to.

So if that's what you're interested in the platforms are more in depth, there is less emphasis on physical beauty and more on personal compatibility so you know, again there are good tools online and their currently wretched tools online and you know the key is never to use the wretched months because once you go to them in a moment of frustration. You'll go back. How important is it for us as parents to model good use of screens. I mean, are we modeling for our kids good and bad to words that sound very similar are the key to this monitoring and modeling at interesting. I was going ask you about monitoring you so let's talk about but I will say modeling is primary. If you are on your screen six hours a day. If the first thing you do when you get home stop down and play video games or spend an inordinate amount of time in front of your kids on their iPad then you could get your house in order, just like just like you were saying with a granddaughter got her own house in order. First, because kids are to do what you did what they see and not what you tell them try. Once you do that you need to put monitoring tools in place and other technological tools that monitor your kids screen use that are very helpful. Their whole house Internet monitoring tools are phone things you put on the phone but you need to know what your kids are consuming. You know it used to be that creditors hung out in the bushes today. They hang out on social media. The real danger to your kids is not an unlocked door.

It's an unmonitored digital device. So many of us as parents think of the unlocked door. You know me. Oh yes crazy yeah we you can't let your 10-year-old go down to the park and play alone and that all his kids but it all with no there there to be snatched that the predators are are aligned or not the park because it online.

You can stock hundreds of kids that once I'm in, I tell a horrifying story in the book that was a written up in a magazine about a woman who goes online posing as a 13 or 14-year-old girls use the software to change her appearance to look like this girl and she posts an Instagram, a brand-new Instagram profile literally within three minutes. 15 adult men, line 15 adult men have asked her for their her phone number. I mean if these things happened in the analog world would be. Stop the presses we call the police. There would be nonstop coverage on the news, but these abuses are largely unreported in the screen world. I'm thinking of moms with daughters and thinking of my granddaughters that is staggering right and yet we would never go to bed at night with all of our doors unlocked are windows open, we would be vigilant to protect our children and yet they had these devices, that when parents know that I can help us know like what we do double there. There are monitoring software bark is one of them. That's really good that I recommend my website David R.I'm dog barking bark like a dog yeah it barks when your kid when something when somebody tries commit your kid that way does a little.

I know that it got to clean up after you good yeah there there are a number of these Disney has want to know if I can recommend that but I know they have one. There are software packages out there that will help you with the best thing is your 13-year-old should not be on Instagram yes, then boy they should never be on something like Snapchat or something where the pictures disappear because that's where sex thing starts yeah well you know that I'm thinking is we talk to parents about this. It's on you.

You are in control. This is your you have the power to guerrillas and you write in your book.

I love how you said you said is very important that your kids know every screen belongs to the parents access screen content is with parental permission and remains under their control. Parents will keep all passwords are there apps let their kids know you will be checking their phones regularly to keep them safe and have unlimited access anytime of the day or night right I mean that's just a word of advice parents. This is your is your job. We aren't out of control, we can control and monitor these devices in our homes and we not only can we need to yeah and it's like if you get to mice in your house pretty soon you have an infestation. You don't let this mouse into your house, you need to get control this early and the kids need to have this expectation from the beginning every divisional device every screen every television, every iPad, every phone. All of these things belong to me. As long as you're under my roof, and they need to know this is because I am protecting you. There are people out there who want to harm you, and who can reach out to you through these devices and I am not can allow you to be harmed.

I'm going to protect you. This is out of love and I think you're right, David. Like these conversations should be happening when our kids are younger, that they should be ongoing that were talking about them at the dinner table that it's no surprise and were educating our kids what is happening in the digital world, but also that were praying about this like we call before God we ask him Lord protect our kids protect our hearts protect our minds and protect our bodies and being God's word because that's where true life comes from debt. I think the Lord also say to us, and I put you to be their protector. Yeah, I will protect but you have been given that job and I thought I would say to a parent. I know I know you probably know this, but if you had not been doing this and as a result of these programs you decide I'm taken back my home there to be a revolt like I go easy. It's going to be that your kids are going to just freak out but you have to win that battle because you are protecting them and you have to replace it with something better.

Something better in Cold Stone bribe them.

Whatever whatever writing works in the case get the mouse out of the house. Yeah, one of the things I advise parents to do is to do a formal screen use plan while baby is in the womb started as soon as possible. This is how were going to implement screens, American Academy of pediatrics has one that's actually very good. I'm good to be putting one up on my website very soon a Dave parents can go through. They can print this thing out. They can say this is how many hours working at the television on this is Marina turn the thing off. This is how are going to be using the Internet in our house and know from the time the kid is very little. They just know these are the policies they'll see it is normal and though I know a lot of kids were starting to see the advantages to coming on unplugged from the Internet. You know what's really cool right now, flip phones, kids in junior high or carrying around and even highschooler Karen flip phones, you know, I think there's even a growing realization among the young. We are using our screens too much and misusing were becoming excessive at ease and you know addicted Alberts and I don't want to be that young people want healthy, like we do. We adults do. Proverbs 423 says guard your heart and I think that we need to guard our hearts and our children's hearts and David, thank you. Yeah, this is very helpful. Well been my pleasure. Thank you for having me on the ship. The verse that comes to mind for me as I listen to David and Wilson talk today with David Morrow about our screens is a verse in first Corinthians 6 where the apostle Paul says all things are lawful for me, but not all things are helpful. All things are lawful for me, but I will not be dominated by anything and I think we all have to ask the question, have we become dominated by our screens. They are lawful, but are they profitable.

That's what's at the heart of this conversation and it's not just for those of us who are raising the next generation. It's for any of us who have access to screens. We all need to be asking ourselves this question about our devices. In fact what David Morrow has written in his book called rounding and screen time is so helpful.

We want to make it available to you this week as a way of saying thank you when you join with us to help advance the ministry of family life to the family like today is listener supported this radio program on our website.

Our resources are events, none of that would happen if it weren't for listers like you who say this is important this matters. I want to see this ministry continue and to grow.

So when you invest in the ministry of family life today by making a donation or by calling one 800 FL today you are joining with us to help effectively develop godly marriages and families that's our mission.

And when you do that we want to say thank you by sending you a copy of David Morrow's book, grounding and screen time, you can request it.

When you donate again or when you donate by calling 1-800-358-6329 that's one 800 F as in family L as in life, and then the word today.

You know, as we've said. Today, technology is not bad. It's a tool we just want to make sure were using it wisely and that it's not dominating our lives.

David Robbins was the person of family life is here with me and David is a ministry we're trying to utilize screens and technology as effectively as we can help promote and advance the ministry of the gospel absolutely allows us to get the gospel and the biblical principles of marriage and family to more people into more homes and that's why we spent a lot of time and energy on improving our family life app. If you have not checked it out recently, Bob. I've learned that the ideal time for me to listen to a family like today show is at 1.4 speed that's available on our app you can adjust it to whatever speed you want to listen to. It allows me to take my drive times that I have, and instead of tuning the sports radio which especially at this time of year, I'm tempted to do that allows me to use 20 minutes that I have them, and to really feed my soul and to lift my eyes upward, as I head home and invest in my kids. It's been a great resource to really redeem technology through this family life app that we keep improving and using day when I am sound okay 1.4 speed. That's my preference. Bob is all I'm saying. Well I do hope our listers if they've not already downloaded the family life app go to your app store search for family life as one word, the app is free and it gives you access not only to this daily program but to lots of helpful content.

So again download the app and start using it tomorrow.

Working to hear from David and Wilson about the difference between kind of the idealized family. This image we have in our heads of what perfect family life is supposed to be like and the real family life that all of us are dealing with.

How do we strive before the ideal without being crushed by the fact that we never get there.

We hear more about that tomorrow from David and Wilson. Hope you can join us for that on behalf of our hosts David and Wilson on Bob Lapine see you back next time for another edition of family life to family life to the production of family life accrue ministry helping you pursue the relationships that matter most

Get The Truth Mobile App and Listen to your Favorite Station Anytime