Food for thought

Posted: January 1, 2010 in Commentary

Ten years ago the world woke up on the day of January 1, 2000 to find that things were running pretty smoothly. Anybody remember the church-inspired Y2K paranoia? What a joke. It is testament only to the fear-mongering that determined believers can generate when they get an idea lodged in their head; not to our ability to collectively think clearly. I recall hearing a radio program from Focus on the Family prior to that day…. A lady with a poorly formed idea in her head was berating the editor of Christian Computing magazine, quoting the bible at him. He was trying to explain from a technically informed perspective that there might be a glitch or two here and there at worst, and she was quoting a verse from Proverbs about the fool who pretends there is no danger. She was not from FoF herself, but neither was the expert on the subject matter allowed sufficient freedom to explain the reality of the situation. Other ministries, TBN of note, jumped on the bandwagon in very inappropriate ways. It was no small thing that happened, and what some people said and did back then has disappeared down the memory hole the way, say, we have forgotten other such things. The “Satanic Ritual Abuse” scares of the 80s, also propagated in part by well established media ministries. The worst excesses of the Discipleship movement, some of which continue to this day in some parts. Et cetera.

Just food for thought. I’m not ranting about Y2K. I’m reminding you that there is never an excuse not to think at the individual and corporate level. The few examples I gave are things which would have never seen the light of day with a just a few more neurons firing in some heads.

….. Today more than ever we are in need of men who think as well as pray. There are some things we can only apprehend with eyes of faith; and there are some disputable matters that will never be resolved, and do not need to be. But there is never a need to reprove another — or for you to be reproved — for seeking to understand a matter or what its nature is.

Recommended reading is here.

  1. Steve Hewitt says:

    Although it has been 10 years, it is nice that some people still remember the Y2K stupidity. Many lives were ruined as a result of many in the Christian community that cried “the sky is falling”. Hopefully the church learned from the experience. Thanks for remembering my only time on Focus on the Family…

    Together We Serve Him

  2. Ame says:

    i will probably always remember y2k b/c i was 8 1/2 months pregnant with my second and a just-turned-two-year-old at home! and i remember fof and many other christian talk shows going freakin paranoid about y2k (was ‘fun’ to listen to those when immensely hormonal – i had horrible pregnancies)

    i did get some firewood … well, i got more than i needed simply b/c i didn’t know what a ‘chord’ was and had a ‘chord’ delivered (my ex travelled a lot back then). the upside to not knowing what a ‘chord’ was is that we had firewood for a looong time 😉

    and i did get some bottled water … but that’s all i drank back then.

    other than that … being big and huge and preggo with a two year old and a travelling husband and no family around, it was wise to have extra supplies on hand.

    i am curious, then, (and i believe you … just am curious) “Many lives were ruined as a result of many in the Christian community that cried “the sky is falling”. ” … what people actually did and how their lives were ruined.


    that book looks interesting


    “Hopefully the church learned from the experience.”

    that would be nice … and it would be nice if the church learned from many of their experiences … but admittedly, i am pessimestic here

  3. Steve Hewitt says:

    I spent the good part of a year traveling across the nation, speaking to anyone, any church, any meeting that would listen, trying to convince people that Y2K wasn’t going to be a problem. In a few cases, I spoke six times in one day including radio shows. In my travels I met hundreds of people that had made life changing decisions that would impact them for many years, due to the Y2K hysteria. And, for them, the reason they made such sever decisions was because it was coming from many major national Christian leaders. My estimate from those experiences and the percent of such cases I found in the churches I attended? I estimate that over 100,000 Christian homes were impacted by financial decisions they made due to the hysteria. These were people that sold their homes, quit their jobs, cashed in their retirement, pulled their 401k and stocks, purchased windmills, dug wells they didn’t need, etc., etc. Was a sad time for Christian media…

  4. Ame says:

    “sold their homes, quit their jobs, cashed in their retirement, pulled their 401k and stocks, purchased windmills, dug wells they didn’t need, etc., etc.”

    OH … MY … WORD!!!!!!!

    i cannot IMAGINE!!!


    it always surprises me how gullible people truly are … what they will actually believe.

    i always think of this when road crews divert traffic. a few orange cones put up within a few minutes, and thousands of cars automatically drive a different route without even thinking about it. that’s how people are. a few people put up some orange cones in life, and thousands follow them without thinking twice. they never even take the time to consider who, what, or why … they just do it.

    i work hard to raise my girls to be thinking people.

  5. singlextianman says:

    Hey, Steven, thanks for the attaboy. I didn’t even know Christian Computing had a site…. looks great. You know what program I miss? The old (Classic Mac) Zondervan – published Greek New Testament for the Mac. Worked like a charm, and fast with good search tools.

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