Is culture is the dominant influence that shapes people's lives?
From the writings of the Rev. Billy Graham
Q: I am studying human behavior and have to write about the things that influence people the most. My classmates do not agree on the most significant things that shape people’s lives. Doesn’t it seem that culture is the dominant influence? There is so much destruction within culture, how can we escape the bad and find the good? — L.I.
A: Many things confront us in life that shape our thinking and our desires. When someone has been going to church and doing things that please God and suddenly their lifestyle changes, there is reason for concern. We all should be on the alert, because for many people it doesn’t take much to divert attention from the more important things in life.
There are so many messages that rain down on us every day: television ads, emails and social media, phone calls, magazines, junk mail, videos, billboards, conversations—the list is almost endless. How many of them subtly convince us that the road is paved with possessions, or beauty, or money, or fame, or any of a hundred other things? How many of them persuade us that the most important thing in life is financial success or the esteem from others? It is hard to resist the cumulative impact of so many messages.
What this world calls valuable, God calls worthless. What this world scorns, God exalts. Pray for those who have drifted from God and gone the way of the world. We must be consistent in life as a testimony to the Lord. God says our thinking must be shaped by His truth, and His truth is the Word of God.
(This column is based on the words and writings of the late Rev. Billy Graham.)
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