This is not the first time this has happened and I suspect it won’t be the last time. A beautiful voice message about God blessing Cape Town with an hour of hard, pouring rain, accompanied by a picture of a car driving through deep flood water circulated Whatsapp recently. The voice note was true. It did indeed rain all over Cape Town for about an hour straight. Instagram was filled with stories of rain falling all over the city. But no, there was no flooding, no cars driving through deep flood water because it rained that much, sort of insinuating that our long awaited relief has arrived and now we don’t have to worry about the drought anymore. As a Christian myself it irks me when I see good people forwarding messages like this, without first checking the facts.
See, this picture was taken in Hermanus, 120km from Cape Town, where “more than 30mm of rain was recorded”, resulting in flash flooding according to @eNCAWeather on Twitter, 13 Feb 2018.
Not many of those forwarding this message bothered to check the facts, making Christians look like utter, gullible fools. A simple Google image search would immediately return to you the facts and prevent you from blindly forwarding #fakenews, making you my friend, a disreputable news source and pretty much discrediting Christianity.
Surely we are all aware of the trend of fake news and viral messages that are created and sent (I guess) in the hopes of creating mass hysteria? Wouldn’t that mean then, that when a message is spread around that could possibly be untrue because a) it was forwarded to you by your grandma on Whatsapp (not a trusted news source) and b) this might seem too good to be true, you always need to verify whether or not it is in fact true? Yes, we’re all awaiting a miracle and it would truly be great if God decided to bless Cape Town with plenty of rain, but spreading fake news doesn’t help the situation. As Christians, we are expected to be bearers of good news, yes, but more than that we are expected to speak the truth.
We all have to get with the times and be smart about what we give our stamp of approval and decide to forward as the truth. If you don’t know how to check the facts – befriend someone who does and ask them about it first. The world is filled with smart millennials who can Google the crap out of it in a heartbeat. I’m not technically a millennial, but I found the truth of this particular message in less than a minute and only using Google. So what’s the crux of this blog post? Speak truth people! And if you’re not sure if it’s true, do your homework.