Ok. I admit it, I have a problem. I have a serious issue with binge watching multiple series on Netflix. I stay up too late telling myself, “you will just watch one more.” Two hours later I’m staring down the clock freaking out that I have to get up in 5 hours. I blame the Brits. Dr. Who, Torchwood, Sherlock, Downton Abbey, and Call the Midwife were all a gateway to more obscure Britcoms and Science Fiction. And now I’m discovering the world of Mad Men and 30 Rock. I love it all!
I love how the characters develop over time and reveal new layers of intrigue. We dive deep into a world that is completely foreign but at some point becomes so familiar that it is difficult to leave. Every time a series ends I go through all of the stages of grief. I linger in anger directed towards the networks and sometimes the writers who rarely have graceful exit strategies. Of course, those exits may have been better than I give them credit for. The grief does make me hold on a little tighter than I should.
While it is true that I find these shows to be very entertaining and very enjoyable, I actually engage in this serial watching for a reason. Being immersed in a different world changes the way that you see reality. It becomes the lens through which you filter your surroundings. In any given situation I begin wondering how the Doctor would handle it, or what would Don Draper say about that?
But as fun as it is to see life through these lenses I ultimately don’t want to live in them. The lens through which I wish to define my life is the greatest story ever told. The story of Christ’s life, death, and resurrection is THE story. As a pastor my call to tend to word and sacrament means that I get to tell this story. As I do I hope to take a cue from the storytellers that have made me a serial subscriber.
Every time we gather around the sacraments and the story it is an opportunity to immerse ourselves into the first century world of Christ. As we gather in the story our own lives become cruciform. Being immersed in this world changes the way that we see the world around us. And it shapes the way that we live in it.
More on this later. I have a new season of 30 Rock to watch.