Tuesday, January 25, 2005

An incredible journey - that you can join

I am unashamedly promoting three fellow bloggers' efforts to encourage people to read the Bible:

First, Adam Cleaveland's Pilgrimage - Through the Bible in 2005. Then, Chris Harrison's Fields of God, blogging his way through 1st Corinthians. Then Chris' blog pointed me toward Will's Imagine.

To be honest, these digital disciples have a discipline and a faith that I wish I had - and their example is an inspiration and a challenge to me. I can promise you, I'm not yet called to do as they have - but I think their efforts deserve both praise and emulation. No matter where you are when you read this, you can join them right now on their respective Biblical journeys - and benefit from their commentary on how the Word of God intersects their own stories, in their own words. None of them are presenting themselves as "right," or "the last word" on the texts. But they are challenging the world (or at least the blogosphere) to engage the Bible - and to let us walk alongside them on the road, at least in a virtual way.

One of the reasons I am so excited about this is that I've heard for years (starting with Marva Dawn's Reaching Out Without Dumbing Down) that technology is the bane and the enemy of the church, transforming worshipers into audiences and God into a sound-bite. Now, I do agree that any 3-points-and-a-poem sermon can be just as deadly with a PowerPoint slide-show and a synthesized music background as simply with a talking head. But I've always had a real struggle with the institutional church's fear of technology. My experience has been that the folks who look down their noses at the worst implementations of technology and contemporary music rarely are willing to see where traditional liturgies and organ music have been equally as deadly.

For myself, I truly belive that technology and liturgical innovation can be just as powerful tools of God today as the printing press, the German Bible and the German mass were in the 1500's. And I cannot believe that using the technology of the web and the blog to encourage people to encounter and engage the Word of God can be in any way destructive.

To these three - and to the folks whose blogs I read (and who are crazy enough to read mine), and to the hundreds of others whose blogs and vlogs (and technologies yet unnamed) help reach the world in the name of Christ - I can only say this: "I thank God every time I think of you." Your willingness to share your experience, strength and hope out here in Blogaria continues to enrich my journey of faith...and for that, I am eternally grateful.

1 comment:

Poor Mad Peter said...

Amen, preach it, brother!

That said, one thing has been bothering me, and that is this about the use of the new technology--I have yet to see subtlety, or nuance in faith in the new technologies I've seen used. it's as though everything is put together to be more a cartoon, with vivid colours and great portentious walls of sound and hyperbolic melodrama, than a thoughtful documentary or drama that leads us to ponder.

Furthermore, one irony I've noticed in both traditional and "new" worship is that they both equally lack peace anywhere in the service.