Not long ago the height of church technology was some glass and a light bulb affectionately known as an overhead projector. Services weren’t centered around multi media, electric guitars or video clips, they were centered around Jesus. They were centered around Jesus but dang were they boring! I vividly remember sitting on a hard wooden bench (called a pew, why? I have no idea) listening to a fat white guy screaming at us about a myriad of sins we supposedly committed. Looking back I would have been stoked if an impromptu Black Sabbath laser light show would have magically appeared from the choir loft, or pyrotechnics shot from the pastors finger tips when he preached on fire and brimstone. Unfortunately none of that stuff happened, and my stay at church was short lived.
Now a days we have rows of computers, websites, MP3’s, and online churches. Are we better for it? We definitely can be, in the end it’s all about how you utilize the technology that will determine whether it’s an uplifting thing in your life or a drain. I am a massive consumer of all things tech. Most would call me a tech nerd, and I would agree. Below is a short list of the ways I use technology to better understand our King.
1. Biblegatway.com: your one stop bible spot. You can get everything here from nearly all the translations to commentaries, to the bible translated into nearly every language you could imagine. Tired of reading? No worries, you can listen to the bible at Bible Gateway.
2. itunes.com: I listen to a ton of music, but I listen to even more podcasts and they are all FREE on itunes. No, you don’t need an ipod, you can listen to them right on your computer and whats more you can even transform them into mp3’s at media-convert.com and put them on a CD for your car. [For your consideration, I download and listen to podcasts from: theROOT, Andy Stanly, Mosaic, Jim Bakker’s Revolution Church, Mars Hill (both Mark Driscoll, and Rob Bell), and of course This American Life]
3. Blogs: I subscribe to about a hundred blogs. Some are tech related but most of them are pastors scribbling down different thoughts and feelings related to faith, the church, life and just about anything else you could think of. One of my favorite blogs is The Prodigal Jon, and you can check out my blogroll (a list of bloggers who are awesome) at LiveSalty.com on the left hand side. To get the best of the best you can hit up SpitBox Magazine, and peruse the massive archive.
4. YouVersion.com: A Bible website with a twist. This site gives you the ability to go through the bible, take notes, send info to friends and family and collaborate with other community members. This site is still in Beta format, but you can still get a feel for what it is going to be when it fully launches.
Having all these tools at my fingertips has truly been a blessing in my life. It has cut my research time down dramatically while being entertaining at the same time. Jump in and check out the world that is WWW, but make sure you keep your common sense hat on because anybody can build a website and state everything as absolute fact.
Next Up: The Net: Parental Advisory