The average child spends 4-6 hours a day watching or using screens—teens up to 9 hours a day. Study after study has revealed that screen usage directly impacts brain development in our children. Add to that the hazards of inappropriate content, cyberbullying, advertising aimed at our children, misleading information, sleep problems, negative attitudes, poor behavioral examples, and more, and it’s clear the family is up against a dangerous and prevalent rival for our kids’ attention and respect.

We better take a hard look at what we’re allowing into our minds—parents and children alike. If what we tune in to is what we turn into, then we have serious problems. No wonder we have generations of children who are disrespectful to authority and their parents. They are modeling their lives based on what they are exposed to on any number of media accessible via screens.

I’m not just condemning the media and television. I believe Christians ought to invade the media. I always believe it’s better to light a candle than to attack the dark.

But what we need today is absolute discipline in the family, or else the crisis is going to be of such magnitude that we will not be able to solve it. The reason children are inclined to learn from screens is that they are never too busy to talk to them.

Prayer: Father, I pray that You would help me spend less time on screens of my own and more time interacting with my family. Help me to be vigilant in guarding what I watch, listen to, and read, that I might glorify You in all that I do. I pray in the name of Jesus. Amen.

“I will not set before my eyes anything that is worthless” (Psalm 101:3, ESV).

Learn more in Dr. Michael Youssef’s sermon series Building Godly Families: LISTEN NOW

Check out more from Dr. Michael Youssef, here!

About The Author

Dr. Michael Youssef, Ph.D.

Even before he was born, it is clear that God had a vision for Michael Youssef. His mother was in poor health when she became pregnant with Michael, and because his life was in danger at the time of birth, the doctor recommended terminating the pregnancy. An abortion was scheduled. But God intervened and sent the family pastor to reassure them that God was involved in this pregnancy. He told them not to be afraid and that the child would be "born to serve the Lord." Michael's parents accepted the pastor's message as a message from God and obeyed. His mother gave birth, and lived to see him give his life to the Lord at the age of sixteen.

Believing that God had called him out of Egypt, Michael sought an exit visa in a time in which no university student was allowed to have a passport or leave the country. God intervened again, and miraculously he managed to acquire a visa. He immigrated to Australia, where he studied at Moore Theological College in Sydney, was ordained as a pastor, and met Elizabeth who became his wife.

The Youssefs came to America in 1977, and in 1978 Michael received a master's degree in theology at Fuller Theological Seminary in California. Then he earned a doctorate in social anthropology at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia. Michael served nearly ten years in the Haggai Institute, traveling around the world more than 32 times, teaching courses in evangelism and leadership. He rose to the position of Managing Director at the age of 31 years. The family settled in Atlanta, and in 1984, Michael became a citizen of the United States, making his dream of many years come true.

He founded The Church of The Apostles in 1987 with fewer than 40 adults with the mission of "Equipping the Saints and Searching for the Lost". The church has since grown to be a congregation of over 3,000 people today. This church has driven the international ministry of Leading the Way. While it is heard by millions at home and abroad, behind every message preached through radio waves, is the heart of a pastor, willing to nurture and care for these people. Clearly God has uniquely equipped Dr. Youssef to speak to a global audience. The path he has taken has given him an understanding and firm grasp of the Scriptures that transcend cultures. He preaches, teaches and calls with a sincere, based on the authority of the inerrant, inspired Word of God. With his personal knowledge of the Holy Land, its history and culture, Dr. Michael Youssef transmits life to listeners all over the world.

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