One of the tensions in my heart at this current moment is the desire to play what I once played.
It was nearly a year ago I sold my Nintendo DS. That thing was precious to me, and I mean that.
I had bought it myself when I was younger. I was about fourteen when it came out. I received it Feburary 2005. I had ordered the Pokemon Pal Park deluxe edition of the Nintendo DS. That means that on the cover was a Pokemon stamp. Near the screen was a little Pikachu. On the back was a sticker with small pictures of legendary Pokemon. And I was able to play my Nintendo GameBoy Advance games on it. Meaning, nearly all of my Pokemon games.
If you can’t tell, I was a huge Pokemon fan. I didn’t go so crazy as to get sheets, pillowcases, dolls, shoes, or anything. But, I bought every game and played them. And for nearly thirteen years, I bought every game that came out.
Beginnings of a Poke Adventure
It started in 1998 when I was seven, just turning eight. My parents had just divorced, but I was oblivious as to what was going on. I lived in my own happy little world.
My dad took me out for my birthday to a Walmart. I wanted to get the Pokemon Yellow version because Pikachu, a cute, little yellow mouse creature, would follow you around in the game. However, they were sold out. I had the choice between Blue and Red. So I chose Blue.
When I got to Dad’s house, I couldn’t put the game down. I was too excited. I played until my battery died on my Game Boy. I’m talking about the original, bulky white, brick like hand held system with a tiny screen.
I would stay up all night playing that game. It was exciting, and it was fascinating. There hadn’t been any game like it during it’s time, from what I played at least.
And it didn’t end there. Game after game was developed. More Pokemon were added, more things to do, and more ability to create a stronger team. After Red and Blue were Gold and Silver. Then came Ruby and Sapphire. Then, to remake the older versions to fit with some newer version game play, they developed Fire Red and Leaf Green. Next came Diamond and Pearl along with Heart Gold and Soul Silver. Then Black and White, and even Black 2 and White 2. With each set of Gameboy games, there were correlating games on the N64, GameCube and Wii.
I could go on about the things I did in these games, the desires I had, and how much of my life tied into these games. But I’ll put a hold on all of that.
Recently they are developing and coming out with X and Y. These games are not based off of colors or jewels, which is a first. But more than that is what these games offer, and it made me have a heart check.
Newer, brighter, bigger, better, tastier, more cream filling kind of Adventures
As I said, nearly a year ago (October 2012) I sold my Nintendo DS. That was a difficult decision, but I needed the money, and I hadn’t played any of the games within the previous six months. It wasn’t only about the money. It was also a statement.
It was a statement to myself about my relationship with God and what I thought about life/reality. I could keep the games for nostalgia reasons. I could keep it to show my kids and let them play. I could have kept them and waited until they were of value, in thirty or more years. But I sold them.
With the shattering reality of who God is exploding into my life, I couldn’t play games the same way as before.
Why would I choose to play a game that absorbed my thoughts, mind, heart, and attention, when the reality of who God is waited to be known, seen, and understood inside the Bible. That great and awesome truth of a Creator, who fashioned and formed me. The Creator who is drawing me unto Himself so that I may know Him, and have fellowship and communion with Him. Why would I hide in a dark corner, stare at a screen, and think about a creation of merely another persons mind?
I wasn’t the same, the games weren’t the same, and more joy was found in the Person of God. My joy in the games weren’t the same.
So I sold it all to the highest bidder on Ebay. And spent that money on gas.
Thirteen years of game collection. Hundreds of dollars in money spent. Thousands of hours of game play. Gone, gone… All gone in a months worth of gas.
Now, a year later, as I read reviews and the awesome new features of Pokemon X & Y, my heart yearns for those days. To simply play without cares, worries, or thoughts. To achieve success in an alternate universe feels so much easier, and is a tasteful satisfaction of the immediate kind. But my heart also hesitates.
There’s a new nature inside of me that mourns and weeps.
“Would you really give up knowing God, having a wife, having a future, and obtaining everlasting joy and satisfaction, for a new game that will also be old in the next ten years?”
The Old Man within me would, and that is scary.
To spend my time, money, talent, and energy beating a game seems trivial. So trivial.
One day, I may learn how to glorify God in all things. For now, Life and Joy beckon me. I must again kill the old man in me, and set again on the journey of true satisfaction. A journey into the God who became flesh.