By Maddie Christensen
The “Asking Big Questions” series is made in cooperation with the Wilford Woodruff Papers Project.
In today’s digital age, the Internet has become an indispensable tool for accessing information on any topic imaginable. With just a few keystrokes and a click of a button, one can easily find answers to any question that comes to mind. Googling questions has become a ubiquitous activity that many of us engage in on a daily basis.
We often turn first to the Internet when we have questions, even ones that are gospel related. While it can be a wonderful resource for us, it’s also important to recognize the limitations and to develop strategies for evaluating the credibility and reliability of the information we find. President Nelson shared, “Stop increasing your doubts by rehearsing them with other doubters. Allow the Lord to lead you on your journey of spiritual discovery.”1 So, how can we let the Lord lead us when we use Google to answer our gospel questions?
Three steps will be helpful in finding the most accurate and best information to answer our questions:
- Look for reliable sources.
- Pray about the answers you find.
- Listen to the Spirit.
FIRST, IS IT RELIABLE?
The first step in googling a question and looking for a sound answer is evaluating whether the source is reliable. Is the author or source identified? Is the information factual or evidence based rather than just opinion? Does the evidence come from a primary and trustworthy source? Do multiple sources suggest the same answer? If we can answer all of these questions with a resounding “yes,” then the source is most likely a reliable one to use.