Hey! Have you seen that State Farm commercial where this guy is diagramming an accident with his State Farm pocket agent app on his smartphone? His neighbor comes up as he’s doing that and after he tells her what all he can do with the app, she says that she thought State Farm didn’t have an app that could do all that! The guy asks her where did she hear that. She replies that she heard it on the Internet and then she says: “You know they can’t put anything on the Internet that isn’t true!” The guy asks her where she heard that, to which she replies: “On the Internet!” Then she says. “Look! Here comes my date! I met him on the Internet! He’s a French model!” At that point a young man walks up who looks like he’s from I don’t know where and says without an ounce of a French accent: “Bonjour!” That commercial is a hoot!
Well, just like the lady in the commercial, there are many people today who get their theology from the Internet, because after all, they can’t put anything in the Internet that isn’t true, right? But the Internet is not the only source of their misguided theologies, they also use as sources of their knowledge of God, gospel songs and videos! The tragedy of this situation is that in many cases, the thoughts about God they read and see on the Internet and hear even in gospel songs are often really not sound biblical truth at all!
Whatever happened to learning about God and God’s word at church in Sunday School and Bible Class? Perhaps we would do well to quit relying solely upon others to do our thinking for us, especially in regard to theology, and study the Scriptures for ourselves! No matter who the preacher or teacher is, don’t just take their word for it! Be like the Bereans in Paul’s day. The Bible says: “Now the Berean Jews were of more noble character than those in Thessalonica, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true.” (Acts 17:11 NIV) Now, I realize that even now, you are reading this on the Internet! So you know I’m telling the truth right? Because I wouldn’t put anything on the Internet if it wasn’t true! Right? No! Don’t even just take my word for it; find out for yourself! After all, I too could be a French model! Bonjour!
I’ve always heard and I once believed that change is really hard, but actually it is not! Change occurs all round us every day, with or without our consent! In fact, I heard someone say that the only thing constant is change! You say that you can’t change or that change is difficult? God forbid that it should happen, but consider these scenarios: Scenario #1: You are driving down the street and suddenly your car is broad-sided by another vehicle that failed to stop for the traffic light or the stop sign. You are seriously injured and maybe one of the occupants in your car dies! In a moment, in the blinking of an eye, your life has changed forever! Scenario #2: You’ve tried and tried, but you can’t bring yourself to stop smoking. However, when you go in for your annual physical, your doctor informs you that you are in the preliminary stages of lung cancer. However, there is a 90% chance that if you stopped smoking now, the cancer would never develop fully. Would you find it really difficult to change if your life depended on it?
In both of the afore-mentioned scenarios the impetus for change came from an outside source and it was forced: change happened! It didn’t take long for it to happen and in the first case, it was instant! But why is it that we can change and will more readily accept the necessity for change when it is forced upon us? Why can’t we just change simply because there is a need or a benefit to change?
I want to suggest that change is really not that difficult! It’s not the change that’s difficult; it’s the idea, the preparation, the getting ready to change that’s difficult! And that wouldn’t be difficult if we would just change our attitude towards change! We don’t like change because change forces us to confront the unfamiliar. Change forces us out of our “comfort zone” which, in many cases is just another word for “rut,” which is nothing more than a grave with no ends! Change is going to occur! You can’t stop it! So wouldn’t it be better? Wouldn’t you have more control and more power in your life if you initiated the change? Wouldn’t it be better for you to happen to change than for change to happen to you?
Take a look around! Take a look within! And then, take the initiative: Make the changes instead of allowing the changes to make you!