A new year is always exciting. With it comes the occasion to look back and reflect on the year that has ended, as well as an opportunity to look ahead and envision the possibilities that lie in wait. Because of the events that transpired in 2001, the year 2002 presents an even greater opportunity to share the love of Christ with a needy world. Hearts have been softened and people are looking for answers to life’s questions possibly now more than ever. The church has the Answer and new doors have been opened through which it can be presented.
The challenge that comes with this opportunity is just how can it be presented effectively. There is a guarantee, however, that what serves as a challenge to humanity merely brings an opportunity for God to prove Himself greater. God always provides the means by which to present the Message. Ever wonder how Peter led thousands to Christ on the day of Pentecost without the use of even the most meager of sound systems? Who would think of trying that today? God takes what is available and uses it for His purposes. He is doing that again today. As technology develops, progresses and thrives, new ways of carrying out the Great Commission are given.
I listened to the Reverend Billy Graham speak following the events of September 11, and I was struck by the thought that, because of technology, because of the type of equipment we work with every day, people around the world were hearing the Gospel presented in a very real, very personal way. That drove home the knowledge that, while technology is often used for messages contrary to the Gospel, it is also available to be used to share Christ with larger numbers of people.
Technology is often seen as intimidating or intrusive. There was a day when the most advanced pieces of technology used in worship services were the old upright piano and a church hymnal. The thought of using audio systems, video production gear or projectors was unheard of. As society changes however, systems like these become an ally rather than a foe. Like people, technology is only a conduit through which God can send His offer of grace, mercy and love.
Throughout the year we will look at the many ways that advancements and changes in technology can enhance worship services. Many specific changes have been made that will benefit worship services maybe more than any other area where it is used. Projectors are brighter, smaller and less expensive, making them easier to incorporate into sanctuaries and meeting places.
Traditional methods of presentation that in the past have compromised quality, have been improved through new developments and new devices. We will explore those developments. But, as we do, let us remember that more important than how bright the projector is or how great the picture looks through the camera system is how best does this help us, as believers, present Christ to a people that need Him. In 2002, that remains the most important Message.