Tuning in; tuning out.


If you're on Facebook and Twitter you will find your feed is becoming increasingly full of articles telling you how to win at life. Either it will be a Buzzfeed article of Life Hacks (simple tricks to save you a few seconds here and there through your day) or it will be something like 10 Points to a Healthy Work-Life Balance. 

I recently scrolled down my Facebook News Feed to discover not just conflicting advice between articles but sometimes huge conflicts within the articles I was reading. I haven't even mentioned the comments that other users have added to agree or disagree with the original post (never ever read the comments section). Never before have we had so much access to so much advice. The world's opinions are literally at our fingertips.

The rise of social media has been meteoric and it has enabled some wonderful communication and reconnection but we are drawing ever closer to the point of information overload. I can think of times in the past when I was in a bad place, things had gone far from how I had hoped and I was seeking out something to hang my soul on; some comfort in the middle of the confusion. What I found online was overwhelming. My instant connection to the world placed far too many voices in my head. Every mind had an opinion and I was able to access them all. I was seeking life amongst the voices but what I found was a frenzy of advice. 

Don't worry, this isn't going to head towards the 'social media is the tool of the devil' type message that we've all read before. Neither is the irony lost on me that I am writing an article for the internet whilst saying that we can be oversaturated by articles on the internet. I just want us all to think about how we find the still small voice of God in amongst the clamour of everyone else. 

In John 6:68, Peter says to Jesus, 'To whom else will we go? You have the words of eternal life.' I love this verse. I love that you can read it in two ways. You can read it with an impassioned voice, 'We're not going anywhere Jesus! Every word you say fills us with life.' We can also read it in a tone of resignation, 'We've looked everywhere else, and yet we keep ending up here with you.' 

I also love this verse because it is so relevant to my life whichever way I read it. Sometimes I am riding a wave of energised faith and want nothing more than to seek His words. Other times I face a conflict, decision or am in pain and I fill my mind with self-help blogs and advice from any person who will give it and eventually come to Him worn out praying, 'Okay, I'm out of ideas, I am ready to listen to You.' 

As we go through our weeks filled with decisions and next steps on paths we have chosen may we find ways in which we can listen for His voice. Whether it be in stillness or activity, reading or prayer may we open our ears for His words. May we learn to turn down the volume of the crowd, virtual or real, and tune into the voice of Him who knows us better than we know ourselves. His words will fill us with eternal life that will not fulfil us but will overflow into the lives of those around us.