Life Updates – Computers And Gaming

Back in March, I went through a crisis of gaming. (You can read about that here: Accomplishments and Achievements) And then when I thought it was over… I realized I had only scratched the surface.

 

(I didn’t want to seem like I’m directly attacking the game so I blocked it out.) I had one game left that I was obsessed with. I thought I had it under control until I saw this. I knew I had a problem. And instead of recognizing I needed to deal with it NOW, I asked God for a sign that I needed to stop. And even in my weakness, He did provide that. The next part of the game, in the plot of the storyline, was something the Bible specifically stated was wrong. There were other questionable things before that which I should have known were red flags, but I really didn’t want to stop so I ignored them. I knew then that I HAD to stop. So I did. And this week:

It’s still higher than I’d like, but it’s much better than it was. πŸ™‚

Right before this, a few weeks ago, I tried to turn on my old gaming laptop and discovered that it was dead. I cried over that one. It hurt. My dad and I will probably look at it at some point, but as of now, I think I’m okay with not being able to access it. If I hadn’t backed up my photos and files (meaning all the novels I’ve ever written) THEN I would be still panicked and super sad. But as it is, this basically means I can’t play Oregon Trail or Heroes Might and Magic IV., and I can’t use PhotoImpression 1999, which is what I used to edit some photos. (Now playing with Picasa and Canva to do what I used to do for photo editing.)

I realized how connected to these things I was and I didn’t want them to become idols. So I distanced myself from them. Giving up the game hurt, especially for the first few days. But the laptop, after the initial shock, didn’t hurt as much. So I think I’ll be fine with restoring it soon without too much worry. (Long as I don’t play Oregon trail for five or six hours afterward. I adore that game and as long as I’m responsible with time, I’m fine with a round or two of it. Nothing bad in it. And it’s actually quite educational. “Oh no you got bit by a snake!” “Oh no you ate a poisonous plant!” “You caught 1000 pounds of fish!” “Oh no you nearly drowned in the river!” “The wagon dumped in the river and you lost supplies!” “An ox stepped in a hole!” “Oh no you just got mauled by a bear!” I need to stop now, I could gush about this game for too long. XD)

I have another part to this coming out soon, titled Warning Signs. πŸ™‚ See you later! ❀

Accomplishments and Achievements

(The poem I intended to post on Monday needed a bit more work, therefore it has been scheduled to Wednesday. In case you wondered what happened to it. πŸ˜‰)

For me, it’s easy for a feeling of accomplishment to be an addiction that gets out of hand and turns into sin.

Finishing a level of Candy Crush and seeing the little girl cheering? Yup. I could play for HOURS. And having it on my iPod… now I see how easy it is to be addicted to a phone. I could carry the gaming addition wherever I went (that has WiFi).

Whenever there was a contest, I was waaaaaaaaay too focused on winning. I’d play for hours to win.

And this win led me to play for HOURS because I didn’t want to waste my prize. (Yes I took screenshots of my wins… I rediscovered them recently and cringed. I was THAT proud of my wins. πŸ˜…)

I had to offload all four games from the Candy Crush franchise from my iPod, and I may delete them completely soon.

After reading this post from my friend TR (Accomplishments Becoming An Idol), I realized just how deep this went. Accomplishments and achievements had a hold on me.

Accomplishment – level 13 on Memrise.

This achievement lost on Duolingo upset me more than it should have. I almost considered buying “plus” so I could fix it but… would it be worth it, just for that? The point was, I was learning Spanish. And I still am.

Progress is being made. If I miss a day, does it really matter? One day? Does the streak matter, or does the learning?

And when it comes to Candy Crush, I realized something…

When I stand before God, will this matter?

“God, I didn’t spend that much time with You and I’m sorry. I didn’t have a lot of free time.”

“What about all those hours playing games, child? You did have time.”

“…I was top of the leaderboard. That counts for something, right?”

Wrong.

Would He be proud of these achievements and accomplishments?

That’s probably a no.

Learning a new language has a point. Being able to speak to more of His children. But the games, even though they are so fun and addicting… weren’t worth the hours put into it.

I must admit, this achievement felt good. But I’m trying not to let it become an idol. I don’t use the website every day. On Duolingo, I have the streak freeze activated so if I do skip a day, I don’t lose my streak, but I’m also really enjoying the learning process there (they have Duolingo Stories which I really enjoy alongside their Spanish lessons), so I rarely skip a day. That’s why my streak is back into the 80s… πŸ˜… I keep telling myself it’s not the numbers and if I lose this streak, I won’t be upset. It’s a struggle sometimes but:

Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. (Hebrews 12:1-2)

I don’t want to get trapped in the snares of accomplishments and achievements; I want to run the race and keep my eyes on Jesus, my Prize. He is worth it! ❀