Tuesday, January 12, 2021

31-Day Phone Challenge - Day 12


Have you ever used Philippians 4:8 as your guide for online reading?

Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.”

We can’t see the defiled and think on the ugly and believe lies without it affecting the health of our souls. Not that we need to stuff our heads under the bed and only think about rainbows and fluffy kittens (or dust bunnies); sometimes the truth will be uncomfortable. But all online reading needs to be done with discernment through the lens of Scripture.

The internet is immensely helpful, and I value it for research. But Google remembers what I’ve read online and will continue to give the same kinds of information in future searches. This is helpful when searching for a local restaurant, but less helpful when seeking unbiased information. I need to be aware of how gullible I can be and how my bias can make accurate research difficult.

Today’s Challenge: When you read online, pause to ask questions such as “How do I know this is truth? Can I verify this data, research, or statistic? Is this opinion being stated as a fact? Does this person have the qualifications to teach on this subject? Does this line up with the truth of God’s Word?”

Note: I wrote this 31-Day Phone Challenge over a month ago, but, as some of you have mentioned, current events make this even more needful. What would change if all the believers in the US spent more time in prayer for our country than we spent reading the news or sharing our opinion?


  1. I think on this question a good bit. It is far too easy to read too much of the news and simply become calloused. I've come to realize that whatever news I read, I am obliged to bring it to the Lord in prayer. If I don't pray over the pain, injustice, troubles, or whatever it may be that I read about, what does that show about my heart? Callousness. Hardening against the suffering of our world. But being conformed to the image of Jesus means softening and growing in compassion. There is only so much news I can prayerfully process. What is the purpose in being an informed citizen if not to lift up our community and nation to the Lord? So I try to read sparingly, and then go pray. On a practical note - Duck Duck Go is a search engine that will never keep a record of your past searches or use your information in any way - it collects no data. I use it because I don't like the idea of being presented a "curated" list, or of my information being collected.

    1. What a great idea! I never thought of keeping my news reading to only what I could pray over.

  2. Our family uses this verse frequently to make decisions about entertainment. I sometimes forget to apply it to my news consumption as well. Good reminder.


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