Despite what you may think, you do not know everything.
Too often I find myself passing time by browsing Facebook. Too often, I click a link because the headline caught my eye, and I just want to know ALL the details. And too often, those links are nothing more than a waste of time, and I learn nothing of value.
In chapter 8 of Jen Wilkin’s book, None Like Him, she addresses God’s Omniscience, and our desire for omniscience ourselves. “We want all the facts, but as finite beings we are not designed to have them. And so, not surprisingly, unmeasured consumption of information brings us not increased peace of mind, as we had hoped, but increased dissonance. Psychologists have coined a term to describe what happens when we ignore good boundaries for what we feed our brains: information overload.”
Information overload causes many maladies, but the most devastating effect happens when we fill our minds with things that don’t align with God’s word: it kills empathy. According to USC sociologist Manuel Castells, “In a media culture in which violence and suffering becomes an endless show, be it fiction or in infotainment, indifference to the vision of human suffering gradually sets in.”
“We crave knowledge of the future, and often have unhealthy interests in the affairs of others. But the first causes anxiety and the second increases our troubles: what to do?
We need to let God be the one who manages all knowledge. Only he is capable, and only he can be trusted to do so with perfect wisdom. And we need to look to the knowledge of who God is to remove our anxieties. This will mean less time chasing curiosities online and more time mining for treasure in scripture… Our comfort lies not in holding all knowledge, but in trusting the one who does.”
I know that personally, I need to make better choices on what I choose to feast my mind on. I need to be asking myself these questions Jen asks in her book: “Is what I”m spending my time and attention on going to make me more like Christ, or better able to serve God and others? Will it enable me to love God with all my mind, or cause information overload?”
“The business of every believer is to strive to understand what God has revealed. It becomes the filter through which we learn to choose wisely what additional knowledge is good for our souls. And in choosing well, we employ our minds in loving God as they ought.”
Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me — practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.