Let’s Google That!

16 Oct

James 1:19, “Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath:”


I am the Googlemeister.  I google everything, even things I am absolutely certain about.  Sometimes new information has come along since the last time I studied something and I learn something new in spite of myself . . .

That said, I have a challenge for us, based on a way we all use Google as a crutch from time to time.  I have seen conversations, both in person and online, be brought to a screeching halt with the line, “Well, why don’t you just google that?”  The idea behind the statement is “since you are asking a factual question, why don’t you use a factual source to answer it?”  And that is a good question, if the reason for the conversation was primarily to gather information.  Sometimes it is not.  There are still times that we bring something up in conversation just because it feels good to interact with our fellow humans instead of a computer.  The wise person will ascertain what the primary reason is that someone else is asking a question . . .

On that note, I will add that Google has not raised the level of our communications as much as I had hoped.  If anything, it has helped to reinforce the idea that we are ideal communicators and anything that goes wrong in conversation is someone else’s fault.  An idea we love to believe because it feeds the pride of our fallen flesh.

It has to be pointed out sometimes that the Vulcan mind meld doesn’t actually exist.

So, if I communicate something to someone else that I wish for him to do for me and he doesn’t do it exactly the way I asked, that doesn’t necessarily mean that I communicated my wishes exactly and he misunderstood me.

And if someone asks me to do something for him and I don’t do exactly what he wished, it doesn’t mean that he is a terrible communicator either.

We live in a fallen world.  Miscommunication is the name of the game, baby!  The default setting.  I am not sure I have ever met two people, even those married more than 50 years, who can claim to communicate everything exactly right the first time.  That is why God told us to be swift to hear and slow to speak.  We have to approach things carefully if we are asking someone to do something for us, or chances are about 90% that that person won’t do things the way we intended.

Notice how the next thing God told us to do was to be “slow to wrath”?  The reason for that is that since miscommunication is our default setting, we will be angry 90% of the time if we assume that we are a perfect communicator and everyone else around us is flawed in that area.

Let’s just realize that communication is an area we have to work on all life long.  It is worth it to work on communication, as it forces us to work on relationship.  And we are made for relationships.

Perhaps we may still have to work at communication in heaven.  I am not sure we will have the Vulcan mind meld, even there.  We will be sinless, but nowhere are we promised that we will know or understand everything . . . I look forward to seeing how it all works someday.

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