The discerning heart seeks knowledge, but the mouth of a fool feeds on folly.
—Proverbs 15:14, NIV
Several years ago I worked as the Director of Communication for Fight Colorectal Cancer (Fight CRC) and one of my tasks involved monitoring our social media accounts. Facebook and Twitter were still growing in popularity amongst nonprofits and I was excited to help our organization engage.
To begin my work day, I'd eagerly log on to create posts, reply to comments and connect with other groups and survivors. Most of the time, I experienced what I set out to do and found myself encouraged and hopeful after logging on.
A few other times I logged off feeling discouraged and frustrated though. The feeds for #coloncancer were bombarded with misleading messages like "hotdogs cause cancer." Our inbox would get spammed from people claiming a miracle $29 oil cured all of their diseases. I prayed no survivors would fall for the lies. I hoped our followers trusted us to only share reliable information. Having a science-focused team that read the latest research and instructed me on what was true and false helped us maintain our credibility.
Social media has only grown in popularity since the days I worked at Fight CRC, yet the abundance of misinformation has not stopped. Not only are there false claims about cancer flooding our news feeds, but there's misleading memes, articles and videos about nearly every subject. The world is full of people hoping to shape our minds with misinformation, and this applies to both sides of any issue. But we don't have to fall victim to it. We can choose to log off, unfollow and block what tries to lead us astray. We can pray for discerning hearts and for trustworthy information to cross our paths.
Until Jesus comes back, our world will be full of folly—people trying to spread false information and lead us astray. But our faith will survive if we make a commitment to discern what's true versus false and to fill our minds with truth.
- Are you believing in truth or lies? How do you know the difference?
- Who/what are the trusted sources in your life that you find credible, wise and discerning? Why?
- Spiritually speaking, how does what you believe as truth line up with God's Word and the faith leaders in your life?
Jesus, I want to be wise and discerning like you! Help me fill my mind with truth and reject any lies that are trying to mislead me. Amen.
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