So What?

We live in the Information Age. There's an unmeasurable amount of information available to us. Some of us even have 24/7 access to all the information on the internet because our cellphones are internet capable. But it's not just the internet. There's more information, more news, more data, more science, more medicine, more theories, more everything. And all that data is growing. I recently read that the average 13 year old has already been exposed to more information than their grandparents were in their entire lives.

All that information is great, or at least has the potential for greatness. But what does one do with all that info? Learn to ask the question "So what?" Just because a piece of information exists, doesn't mean it's useful to you. I could know the weather report for New Zealand tomorrow - but that's not overly useful for me. I'm sure some people care about that - New Zealanders for one - but it doesn't really affect me. A careful application of the "So what?" can help filter through information that's non-essential.

This can even be true when dealing with a timeless truth. I believe the Bible is the Word of God. But not every text or passage in the Bible is useful in every situation. There are some passages in the Bible that when you read them, you need to ask "So what?" Why is this story here? Is it just a history lesson OR is there some truth to be learned in this story? You've got to run it through the "So what?" filter. And just because someone else finds a story particularly meaningful to them at that moment in their journey, doesn't mean that you will. And here's the important part - THAT'S OK. (Some of us need to read that last sentence a few more times and REALLY digest and understand that.) Maybe that text will matter in a different point in your journey, maybe it will never be a biggie for you. That's ok. Just use the "So what?" filter.

Useful information is not just head knowledge - it changes how you act. If you truly believe that 2+2=5, you will behave in a different manner than if you believe 2+2=4 (namely, much of your addition will be wrong). But information that passes the "So what?" filter, affects us. It changes us. Hopefully, it makes us better in some small way. When you find a Bible text that passes the "So what?" filter, it will change your beliefs and your behavior. And that's a good thing.

Use that "So what?" filter effectively. It will take some practice, but eventually you will be able to cut through all the noise and data, and have some great wisdom that really matters.

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