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Are You One of the Pancake People?!

The law of the Lord is perfect, refreshing the soul. The statutes of the Lord are trustworthy, making wise the simple.

Psalm 19:7

Pancakes, anyone?!

I was speaking to a friend recently who has worked as a producer and editor at the ABC, working on shows like Foreign Correspondent and 4 Corners. He was lamenting the fact that in a digital and on-demand age, watching news content at a certain time each week, especially long-form journalism, is no longer palatable. One of their news shows has dropped from a weekly viewership of 750K to 300K in 3 years, with the average age of viewers in their mid 70s!

(Firstly, apologies if I’ve got some of the words and terms in the above paragraph incorrect…it’s not a world I’m particularly au fait with!)

As I listened to his lament and did my best to empathise with the decline of his chosen profession, I was also acutely aware that I’m part of the problem. I consume my news through headlines, snippets, synopsis, infotainment, or indirectly (through social media, online conversation, documentaries etc). I rarely consume news in long-form, and if I do it’s only because it’s a topic of particular interest to me at the time.

Many of us are Pancake People…if you google that term you’ll see that Macmillan Dictionary describes Pancake People as "people who read widely but superficially on the web. We'll become “pancake people,” with wide access to information but no intellectual depth, because there's little need to contain information within our heads when it's so easy to find with a mouse click or two."

In essence, Pancake People are flat, spread thin by bits of information, with no depth. We have more information available to us than ever before, but is that proliferation of information making us wiser people? It would seem not.

There is a big difference between information and wisdom. What we are overwhelmed with is information…what we fail to do is stop and dwell long enough on anything to develop wisdom.

As Sam shared with us recently, the Bible encourages us to meditate on God's Word. To stop and think in silence long enough for it to seep deeply into our hearts and change our behaviour.

Perhaps like me you often feel you don’t have the time…well, I need to remind myself that I make time for things that are important, and growing in wisdom is surely one of those things.

Take some time today to sit and read quietly, to think and reflect deeply...because no matter how much you like hotcakes for breakfast, none of us really want to be described as a Pancake Person.



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