Technology – Distraction or Direction?

Recently I’ve been listening to a podcast on my commute called “Geeks and God.” Yes, I am a geek. I geek-out on video, audio, web, computers in general, electronics, and anything else that can be considered “tech.” I’ll talk about it for hours – even to the detriment of other things that I should be doing. Well, this podcast had an episode called “The Whiz-Bang Factor” from December 15, 2008. It’s an awesome episode that really made me think.

Am I a video guy or am I a Christian who does video? Am I a web guy or a Christian who does web? What defines me? What defines you? If you are defined by what you do and not who you are (better yet, Whose you are), you have the wrong focus. For the real bite, when people ask who you are, are you a (insert job or hobby here) guy (or girl) or are a Christian who does (insert job or hobby here).

This gets to the actual thing I wanted to blog about – what is the purpose of technology in worship? Is it a distraction or does it give direction? While I love technology and use it daily, hourly, and almost minutely (is that even a word?), it can often become a distraction. And I don’t just mean fancy videos. Technology can be almost anything. An organ is technology (from quite a while ago) and can be distracting by those who aren’t used to it or, even worse, have bad memories associated with it. An acoustic guitar is technology and can be distracting by those who aren’t used to it. The question is this: who is the church trying to reach, what technologies are distracting (or biblically, can cause them to stumble), and what technologies point in the direction of God and bring glory to Him. Whether it be organ, microphone, guitar, video, or lights, if it’s used to bring God glory and doesn’t cause the majority of your congregation to stumble, I say use it! In the words of Kip, “Yes, I love technology!” But, as I said earlier, it’s something I do, not who I am. I am first and foremost a follower of Christ.

Author: John

I am the Senior IT AV Systems Design Engineer in the department of Enterprise AV Services, part of the Division of Information Technology at University of North Georgia. That means I design, install, and maintain anything that is audio visual: projectors, sound systems, control systems, cameras, lighting, Crestron, Polycom, Extron, Yamaha, Dante, Hitachi, Sony, NEC, and any other techy-sounding thing. I am also the deacon of technology at Christ Family Church in Dahlonega, GA. All in house technology (audio, video, lighting, etc.) is under my care. I attended North Georgia College and State University (now UNG, where I work) for my undergraduate work in Music Performance. I’m also a graduate of Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary in Wake Forest, North Carolina, where I obtained a Master of Divinity in Biblical Counseling. I’m married to my awesome wife (Heather) and have an awesome family (Jack, Debbie, Hannah, Levi, and Emmeline)!

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