Too Much Noise
Last week I was thinking about how much information we have access to today that wasn’t accessible 10-20 years ago. When I pull my iPhone out of my pocket there is very little that I can’t find. I have instant access to news, sports scores, and weather forecasts. I can shop and have packages delivered to my house. I can download books, podcasts, and movies.
I can be instantly connected via audio or video call to my parents and brother living in Montana or my brother and his family living in Mexico. I could instantly have pictures of my new niece in the palm of my hand just moments after she was born.
As new parents, my wife and I have discovered websites and message boards discussing every possible developmental stage, challenge, and joy of raising children. Advice is given out by the pages and apparently everyone has experienced something worse than what you’re going through.
The list of what is accessible to us through the internet is nearly endless. This doesn’t even include newspapers, magazines, books, and cable or satellite television. There is a steady stream of content to consume created by people who want to influence, persuade, and entertain you.
All this information is awesome because you can learn so much and connect with so many different people. Just a few weeks ago I learned how to build a raised planter box from some plans and pictures that I found online. We’re now growing a small vegetable garden in it.
The more I think about it though, the more I realize how much noise there is all around us all of the time. Now I don’t necessarily mean an audible noise. I just mean an overabundance of information. Everywhere we turn there seems to be a screen – a television, a phone, a tablet, a computer – with information coming at us. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed by all of this noise.
When we do go out in search of information, how do we know that what we are getting is accurate? The phrase “fake news” has been popularized over the past couple of years and we are reminded that not every piece of information that we encounter is truthful.
As we’ve tried to help our daughter sleep better at night we’ve discovered numerous different pieces of advice for helping a child sleep. Unfortunately, much of it turns out to be contradictory. How do you know what to do?
For things like baby sleep, it’s not a big deal. Kids eventually figure it out. But what about matters of faith in God. This same noise exists. You can find TV shows, blogs, websites, YouTube videos, books, and magazines that all try to influence your view of faith and God.
How do you cut through the noise? In John 10:27 Jesus says, “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me.” To cut through the noise we have to listen to the voice of our savior Jesus Christ. It’s easy to get caught up in the latest fad. It is enticing to think that we can figure out God on our own and make our own rules about religion and faith.
However, we don’t follow Jesus on our own. We do it as a part of the flock – his Church. When God’s people gather together, they gather around God’s Word. In this Word we hear Jesus speaking. He tells us that he is the way, the truth, and the life, and that salvation comes only through Him. (John 14:6) He tells us of his great love and forgiveness that comes as a free gift to all who believe in him.
Jesus loves you. He died on the cross to bring forgiveness and peace to the whole world. Cut out the noise and get into God’s Word. It’s there where you will hear the story of God’s free love that he has been showering on the world since creation. You’ll hear about how he loves you – not because of what you have done or haven’t done – but because his very nature is love. You’ll hear about how he wants you to know him and the gifts that he has to give you. It’s the greatest story you’ll ever read!