It is easy to be fooled in an age of headline-only reading. But even if you read the full article or watch the full video, the persuasion has already been attempted, and has quite possibly worked.
As soon as a story is framed a certain way, usually via the headline, it has primed you to think that way regardless of what the actual story says. This is one of the biggest ways the media engages in fake news. They can then always point to story itself and shrug their shoulders in Edenic innocence.
Just say thanks. This is one exercise in the Dale Carnegie Training seminar that has stuck with me for nearly two decades. Each person in the group took a turn to just sit there. Everyone else then gave them a compliment. After each one, all you had to do was say “thank you.” That’s it.
It’s harder than it sounds, and that’s why it was a full exercise. People need the practice.
I’m a big fan of the anime series Sword Art Online, and think the first season is one of the most satisfying narrative arcs I’ve ever experienced. The premise is simple: 10,000 players get trapped in a virtual reality game, and if they die in the game, they die in real life.
From a distillation of some of the wisdom from the Puritans, in Living Zealously:
…the zealous parent will make more use of the power of prayer than of the rod of correction…and will talk to God about his children more than to his children about God.
This might seem extreme, but if so, we need to reassess our opinion of prayer. Do we really believe in it? And if so, do we have a correct assessment of its power? Do we really trust in the One whom the power resides, or are we trusting more in our own efforts, in our own system of thought?
The book of Judges is an action-packed, gruesome book. It is God working on a grand scale, working through men and women to conquer armies and kingdoms, all so He can bring about salvation for His chosen people, a people who don’t deserve that salvation. Over and over again.