In my inbox, among the spam, jokes, cute animal pictures and e-bills, there are usually a few sensational chain emails forwarded by well intentioned friends. The topic usually involves something like an attack on Christianity, the latest political scandal, a new type of crime or a newly discovered health hazard of a particular food or product.
Usually, I delete these emails once I realize that they are probably just urban legends. Occasionally, though, they come from someone whom I consider a reliable source and the content seems at least plausible. So, I dig deeper. A quick check on snopes.com or truthorfiction.com reveals whether or not the email is valid. Unfortunately, most of the time it is not. I am always relieved that I did not forward the email to all of my friends without checking first. And, I’m always surprised that the friend who sent it to me didn’t do the same thing.
We have to be so careful about what we accept as truth. While I think it’s important to have an open mind, that does not mean that we should blindly accept everything we hear as fact…even when it comes from a source we respect. Teachers, parents, bosses, spouses and preachers are human beings and, as such, prone to make mistakes. Even scripture, when taken out of context can be used inaccurately.
Proverbs 3 (21-23) contains the following admonition, “My son, preserve sound judgment and discernment, do not let them out of your sight; they will be life for you, an ornament to grace your neck. Then you will go on your way in safety, and your foot will not stumble”
Let’s pray that God will provide us with sound judgment and discernment so we’ll be better able to filter out truth from untruth.
And, by the way…it does say, “In God We Trust” on the side of the new gold coins, lemon slices in restaurants really can be nasty, petro express is not owned by Citgo, and the Mr. Clean Magic Eraser will not burn off your skin. Hope this helps!