Your Blog Steward

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Omaha, Nebraska, United States
I am more and more convinced that most congregations die from a staggering lack of imagination. Let's change that. Drop me a line on email or leave a comment if you have thoughts on God, Jesus, congregations, the church or whatever.... I look forward to our conversations.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

I live in an old world

I live in an old world, and I am old school, and because I am stubborn and well-off enough, I don't often have to change my ways...

For example, I like books...so I will never get an e-reader. But what if books become obsolete? I don't know...maybe I'll start watching TV.

I gave up watching TV in January. Now, I only watch sporting events, and shows that my daughters want me to watch with them. I average about six hours a week--although if Discovery Channel puts on a marathon "Dual Surivial" I will watch them all...love me some Cody and Dave! In March my daughter and I timed how much we watched our new 52 inch screen TV, and for the whole month we used it for 8 hours. I think I am becoming a luddite.

But, as you know, I have a computer, and have had one ever since 1987. I have used so many computers over the years that when I tell my younger friends about them they think I am lying...(anyone else remember dot matrix printers?)I am not opposed to "technology" as such, but I am opposed to anything that does not encourage conversation and/or human interaction. (I don't talk about conection much, because I am not sure connection is what humans are after...interaction seems to best fit my understanding of community and individual autononmy, and how most of us desire to work out that relationship)

So technology--such as computers--works better for me because it encourages interaction with humanity, and TV--most of the time--is way too passive. Now the congregations I live amongst and teach about are much more comfotable with TV than computers...why? Do we have an active God (most of the time) or a passive God? What does God actually do in your world?

One of my favorite (and funniest) experiences teaching was when I was arguing that Jesus did "nothing" during his ministry. He sat around and talked, he ate meals, prayed, and occasionally healed somebody, but to most of us in the industrial western world he did "nothing." One of my students, an African immigrant, went ballastic. He argued for a good 10 minutes on all the stuff Jesus did. He was flabbergasted that I would sugest Jesus did nothing...after his 10 minute scolding of my mistake...one of my other students, an adminstrative pastor of a large Christian congregation, said, "well, I wouldn't hire him (Jesus). He doesn't have much experience in work." To which my African student replied..."that's the problem with American congregations--they would rather work than live with Jesus."

That's so old world...so old school.

May your tables be full and your conversations be true.

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