A friend from seminary wrote an article entitled “What the Church Needs to Know About Gamers” for our school’s graduate student journal. It’s worth a read.
The statistics the writer cites may surprise you–like that two-thirds of adults play video or board games regularly.
As I’ve had the opportunity to visit gaming events and conventions in the last few years, I’ve found that the gaming community is wonderfully easy to connect with: They have a strong understanding of relationship, a cooperative spirit, a pursuit of ethical progress, and a fondness for the creative virtue.
Play cultivates these things in us. Play is essential for growth, for health, and for spiritual life. I believe that for Christians, play is one of the most undiluted forms of worship. It is a visible sign of inward grace, of God’s redemptive work in our brokenness. Play shapes us to be LESS broken, more whole. Play is an embodiment of hope–hope that in a healed world, science can be play; philosophy can be play; work can be play; art can be play. Hope that the missional mindset of our culture can be subsumed by something more profound than accomplishment of objective; that deliberation can be an extension of delight.
Sometimes the least useful things in a utilitarian sense are the most helpful things for our hearts.