Tag Archives: Online Communities

Do I Care What Others Think?

When it comes to corporate worship we can’t escape the fact that we are in the presence of others.  Wherever we sit or stand, we are surrounded by other worshipers. (And non-worshipers) In a world where image is everything, do we concern ourselves too much with what others think, when we should be focusing on God?

“What if they see me crying?”

“If I raise my hands, they will judge me.”

“Remember to turn the offering envelope upside down, so no one sees what I give.”

“Nobody complimented my shoes!”

“If I put the envelope in slowly, everyone can see how much I give.”

With the popularity of social media formats such as facebook, twitter and pintrest, etc… we are more concerned than ever before about maintaining an acceptable image.  Haven’t we taken this image conscious mindset to an unhealthy level?  Social media can be a great place to interact with friends, but in our humanness, we tend to only put forth the image we want others to see and we hide our real selves. I’m sure this isn’t true all of the time, but it’s true enough of the time.

Does this same tendency toward image influence our corporate worship?  Scripture teaches that God is the audience of our worship, not others.  When we make God alone our audience, we will care less about maintaining our image in front of others.  The next time you participate in corporate worship set aside the image you want others to see and lay your life open before God.

When we drop the image facade, our worship can be a testimony.  Let us be Spirit and Truth worshipers who enter His presence without our masks and worship the Savior without pretense.

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A Theology of Technology (sort of)

https://i1.wp.com/inhabitat.com/wp-content/blogs.dir/1/files/2010/12/ipadcase-lead01.jpgBlogging from my iPad. I’m excited about new gear. Mostly because it is a tool to help me do ministry… And it’s cool. Okay, perhaps mostly because it’s cool! But I’m working on that motivation even as I blog from my iPad.

1 Corinthians 7:30-31 “those who weep or rejoice or who buy things should not be absorbed by their weeping or their joy or their possessions. Those who use the things of the world should not become attached to them. For this world as we know it will soon pass away.” NLT

So I’ll purposefully be excited in the ministry uses of my “tools” rather than the coolness factor. The Corinthians must have been dealing with iPads, iPhones or at least iPapyrus’ or iPapy’s as I’m sure they used to call them. (I bet the “scroll it” app was cool and everybody was addicted to the game “zombie gladiator”) okay I’m getting off track. But that must be why Paul wrote those words, because those 1st century words have incredible 21st century application!

I’m blogging, I’m on twitter, I’ll begin reading my chord charts from my iPad as well, but my desire is to minister the love of Christ using the language of the culture with the appropriate tools to do the job. However, I’m honestly tempted by the cool stuff available to us to do all this in 2011. Paul, how did you know I would have this temptation? I have no doubt that those words that seem to be about iPads, iPhones, facebook and twitter these days have spoken to all kinds of people and all kinds of possessions for every generation. I’ll heed those words and live my life for the future home which will never pass away.

At second glance I would be well served to look beyond iPads and iPhones as the full application of Pauls words of encouragement. He says those who weep or have joy should be absorbed in that weeping or joy. I wonder what I weep over in vain (a perennially loosing baseball team? the government? the presidents’ job performance? health care?) or what do I rejoice over in vain (a perennially winning baseball team? the government? the presidents’ job performance? health care?) All… ALL those things will pass away. Why do I spend so much of my time frustrated with or boasting in these and other temporal things? …God forgive me. Help me see and keep my eyes on the lasting joys and concerns of the world beyond.