Captivating or Captive
Our society has become an “influencer-led” society. With the world drawn together in an ever-shrinking, media driven sphere, we find the impact of the influencer to reach the worldwide market surprisingly easy. People are influenced by all the media. Bombarded daily with quotes and facts and non-facts from thousands of sources. It is the ultimate source of wisdom. But is it?
In March, Time announced its first Time100 Impact Awards. It is “a recognition of leaders who, through sustained effort, have done extraordinary work to shape the future of their industries and the world at large.”[i] The seven honorees include David Adjaye, architect; Sarah Al Amiri, advanced technologist; Tony Elumelu, economist; Ellie Goulding, singer, activist; Huda Kattan, beauty magnate; Deepika Padukone, actor, and will.i.am, musician. This is a diverse group. All making an impact on how we live and think in our world. [ii]
Listed as the most powerful people of 2022 are Joe Biden, President of the United States of America; Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon; Janet Yellen, economist; Bill Gates, founder of Microsoft; Charles and David, owners of Koch Industries; Warren Buffett, businessman, speaker, investor; Mark Zuckerberg, Cofounder of Facebook. Significant to their title of most powerful, people have either relinquished or rewarded their power of influence to them.[iii]
The Christian blog In His Name lists its own top influencers in the Christian sector. Tim Tebow, author, speaker, and philanthropist, is listed first, followed by Christine Caine, evangelist, author, speaker; Kirk Cameron, actor, producer; Max Lucado, pastor, speaker, author; Dr. Tony Evans, pastor, speaker; Bill Johnson, evangelist, speaker; and Steven Furtick, pastor, author, songwriter as the top 7. [iv]
Proverbs 1:5 reminds us that wisdom comes from listening, learning and discerning. Proverbs 12:26 cautions us to carefully choose our friends because the way of the wicked leads us astray. [v] This demands questions for the Christian. Who is allowed to be an influencer? Yes, people will admire and perhaps, work or live in a brilliantly designed structure by David Adjaye. Probably, for most, the impact on life is minimal. When someone listens to hours of rap performed by will.i.am, is the result of the message in the lyrics causing a change in the mind of the listener?
True wisdom in navigating today’s barrage of information and ever-changing messages comes from the learning and discerning. Being aware of whom you spend time with is critical. Learn the message and motive behind that person. Remember, the wicked will lead you astray. Living with intention as Christ ambassadors require lifestyles that reflect Christ. We can be thankful for contributions made by many that have changed our world for the better if we don’t surrender our Christianity to it. We must always take captive our thoughts and in that be vigilant to the exposure of influence and wisely discern what God would call worthy.
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[i] https://time.com/6160649/introducing-2022-time100-impact-awards/ [ii] https://www.prnewswire.com/in/news-releases/time-reveals-inaugural-time100-impact-award-honorees-ahead-of-celebratory-gala-at-the-museum-of-the-future-in-dubai-807512743.html [iii] https://www.top10about.com/most-powerful-american-people/ [iv] https://inhisnamehr.com/top-25-christian-influencers-you-should-follow-on-instagram/ [v] https://www.whatchristianswanttoknow.com/how-to-seek-wise-counselwho-should-i-talk-to/