Wednesday, October 26, 2005

the tools we use are far too fancy

I make things way too difficult sometimes. Actually *gasp* I think we all do - especially the church as it "emerges".
Before you go reading anything else here, take a look at this music video. Trust me. The first 30 seconds are nothing special, and I'm not sure that i even liked the song at that point... but what happens next is a perfect example of how powerful simplicity really is.
Jed's Other Poem

What you watched was a short film/music video featuring the band Grandaddy. Now, in today's hi-tech world, there is probably an incredible way to use a $4,000 machine and software package to digitally animate the characters on the screen to match what you just saw. Any reasonably trained animator could do it with a few days of work.

The magic of the video, though, is that it was created on an Apple IIc that was built in 1979. The entire machine had less RAM than this text file would take up [48K]. It was programmed with a BASIC-esque language, and required about 15 minutes of learning to do it. I remember playing with BASIC back then, and being able to make some cool stuff.

The reason for this post? We make our lives [and our churches] too complicated in the way we create interaction with each other and Christ. It really doesn't matter what the newest-greatest toy is out there to guide us or complement our incredible worship experience. There were plenty of tools that existed in, say 60 A.D., to enable Christianity to spread thousands of miles in a few years. With no powered transportation and limited mass communication methods.

I'm not suggesting that we move back to pre-electric days and ditch the internet. In fact, I think that e-communication is essential in the future of our church. What I AM saying is: when does the pursuit of the next great method or format actually get in the way of what we're trying to do?

Nothing will ever replace face-to-face conversation. Deal with it.
Sure, we need to create new environments that foster those conversations, and find avenues to attract people into those moments, but in reality... won't the most simple tools work in most instances?
Try it, you might like it.

1 comment:

eric St.Clair said...

Well said. You should turn this post into a podcast. :-)