Friday, February 26

TMI--"Too Much Information"

Ever heard more than you'd like to hear and said, "That's too much information?" This article is about just that. It's not that I'm sharing anything all that personal, but I am sharing why we suffer from TMI with regard to even good things. But first,

I have a confession to make. I like books!

OK, so that doesn't sound very juicy. Glad to know that! But it is true. Now, I don't like just ANY books. As most could imagine, as a Pastor my love hones in on theological/biblical/Christian biographical kinds of writings. I'd like to read novels (the classics especially) but have found that it's more of a direction than a destination. I'm not a particularly fast reader either, thus exacerbating the situation. . . . Maybe.

Why "maybe?" Well, perhaps we weren't necessarily meant to read massive amounts of information. It is certainly difficult to retain it all. Now, I quickly add my deep appreciation for those who can read and absorb a broad range of ideas and philosophies--especially if they can distill those and make them more accessible to the masses. But my point remains that that is not a gift all enjoy. Frankly, we live in a country where many do not read, or at least, read anything profitable as a rule.

There's an important weakness that surfaces when we feel tempted to keep up our readings with others. We may read just to read. I want more than that. Vastly more importantly, God wants more than that! Read for understanding. Read to know God well, to love Him more, in essence to promote the "fear of the LORD."

People can fritter away hours at online social sites--Facebook, IM, Twitter, and texting, etc. (I do three of these myself) These are useful tools IF they are only tools and do not become all-consuming. Then, they not only waste time, but abuse it. What is lost is the art of healthy conversation, and of thinking, or pondering on deeper subjects. Computers can promote our culture's love of the superficial, the mundane, the banal. We must discipline ourselves to move beyond that. A clever statement can be funny, but always aiming to be "cutesy" borders on the innocuous. The Psalmist rightly prayed, "Let the words of my mouth and the MEDITATION of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O LORD, my rock and my redeemer" (Psalm 19:14). This applies to Facebook and texting as well. Of course.

"Too much information" is not the only problem; it's too much useless information! If you're not a Christian, then this may mean little to you. But if you own Christ as Savior, then it MUST mean much. Let us not be deluded into thinking that everything that comes to our minds is worth posting! Let's put a gate on our computers and lock in most things that come to mind. Let God's truth mean much, and let our words be few. That's my advice.

Now, where's that book . . . ?

I welcome your comments.

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