Archive for July 29th, 2008

Here are a couple of interesting pieces trying to apply God’s Word to the huge areas of music and technology

Andree Seu writes, “I used to think one’s music listening habits were inconsequential. Or what theologians call “adiophora” (“things in different”). Nevertheless, when I listen to certain music whose message is at odds with the Truth, I feel a little like I’m cheating on my husband.”

And Vern Poythress writes in “Me, Myself and IPhone”,

Science, it is said, will solve the problems of world hunger. It will bring world peace. And more and better technology will solve the problems introduced by lesser technology.

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Well, sometimes; and in some ways. Maybe science will find an efficient way to harness nuclear fusion to produce clean power—or maybe not. But we can be awash in technology and still be hate-filled or lonely. You can have 200 friends on Facebook and have no one who really knows you, no one who loves you.”

Both articles (links above) are helpful in reminding ourselves that God cares what we sing and how we use technology!

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Are you in control?

According to a 1998 Business Week survey, Americans spend 9.5 hours a day exposing themselves to media including listening to music, watching TV and movies, reading magazines, etc. That was 10 years ago before the rise of laptops, the invention of cellphones with all kinds of video capability like the Iphone, and even the invention of the DVD and downloadable movies on the internet thanks to high speed.  Who knows what the numbers are today.

I love technology but I have to be careful that technology and the media don’t control my mind as a Christian.  I need to use all of these advances for the glory of God in a controlled way.

Speaking of this, Tim Challies has a worthwhile article about this that is worth the read if you use your computer to check email and surf the web or listen or watch I-tunes.

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The second session of the Rebelution Conference we attended over the weekend was led by Brett Harris who gave young people a vision for what doing hard things in their teenage lives would look like.  He gave seven different ideas:

  • Doing hard things means fighting sin your life. Caving into sin is easy. Resisting temptation is hard.
  • Doing hard things means battling discouragement [I could never do that] and complacency [look what I have already done]
  • Doing hard things means doing more than is required [rise above just trying to do what is easy and expected]
  • Doing hard things means getting over the fear of failure [better to try something hard and fail than to not try at all.]
  • Doing hard things will be different for every person [no one can do everything].
  • Doing hard things often means doing small things [like making one’s bed every morning. “Do small things as if they were great, because of the majesty of Jesus Christ.”–Hudson Taylor.
  • Doing hard things is your best life.  It is not your easiest life or your most comfortable life, but it is your best life!

He closed with a quote from G. K. Chesterton, “The Christian ideal has not been tried and found wanting; it has been found difficult and left untried.”

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I have only watched Joel Osteen a few times.  It seems like in every “episode” of “Your Best Life Now”, Joel creates some sort of a need in your life, then tells you how him and his wife Victoria have struggled with that need, and then how they overcame and prospered and how you can you do it too if you follow their advice.

Well, Sean Lucas recently watched Joel the other night and shares some observations beginning with:

Last night as I was flipping the channels during a second straight depressing late-inning loss by my Cardinals, I happened onto Joel Osteen’s program. As someone professionally-trained as an American religious historian, it was striking to watch Osteen once again and note both the themes of his message and the manner of his method. In both respects, his popularity is not the result of originality, but his skillful repacking of positive thinking/self-esteem and Pentecostal/charismatic elements. [On this particular episode, his wife Victoria was presiding at the Lord’s Table. While watching that gave me the shivers, it was also striking how much less skillful and how much more plastic she was compared to Joel.]

Read the rest here.

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