Home > Uncategorized > I am not an iPad

I am not an iPad

In my office (one of a few coffee shops around town with free wi-fi and good coffee) a television shows the morning news – usually on low volume.  I get enough TV in my life so I usually sit where I can’t see it.  Today, however, I looked.  I’m still going through olympics withdrawals and I heard a song that made me look.  The U.S. swim team made a lipsync video of a popular song…or maybe it became popular because they did so.  I don’t keep up on such things.  I digress.  I heard the Call Me, Maybe song and leaned around the corner to see if it was the lipsync.  Nope.

Just the teeniebopper musician.  Catchy little song…nice little gal singing it…I was disappointed.  But you know who wasn’t?  The 9 million little girls who talked their mothers into staying at the venue all night so they could get into the morning television watercooler section of news where the musician would be performing.  They were singing along and jumping up and down and uber-excited.  I haven’t seen such overdone make-up since halloween.

I started to lean back around the corner to get back to writing a sermon when I saw it…something that would drive me crazy if I were the parent who waited in the cold and dark to watch the teeniebopper musician lipsinc to their own recording in times square or whereever.  There was a junior high girl (over the top excited…which kind of sums up a junior high girl from my present perspective) who was watching the whole affair through her ipad.  She was recording the event so she could relive it later.

Problem: she isn’t living it NOW.  How can she relive it later.  I see it all the time: dad at a baseball game, recital, performance of some sort – they watch it through an eyepiece and never actually experience it.  They allow the camera to get the full experience while they settle for second-hand.  I even experienced this while touring Israel.  People could say they went to Israel, but could they really say they experienced it?

Here’s where else it shows up (and prepare yourself for a little judgmentalism from me…ready?): I have a feeling that I am an ipad or video camera.  Many people want to experience God, but try to do so through me.  I recognize that my vocation is a calling to enter the world from a particular perspective, to hear what others may not, to see what is happening beneath the thing that is happening, to listen for a people, to speak out of all of that and to lead God’s people into God’s prefered direction for them.  But that does not mean that they don’t still have that responsibility for themselves.

I can also see that my blanket statement doesn’t cover many, many people.  But there is a need in the U.S., I believe, for Christians to put down the ipad and experience God first hand.  Engage their reality and struggle with scripture and be willing to do it in real time.

Who knows, they could find themselves in a situation like Peter on the mount of Transfiguration: wanting to build houses and stay in that moment forever.  What if he’d turned down Jesus at the front end, and only heard about the mount from an old fishing buddy one day?

Watch your child hit the ball, bleed through their toe shoes, fall off the balance beam, be victorious in completing the task they have been working toward.  Travel the world and see it through your natural lenses.  Experience life first hand, and don’t outsource it.  You may not be able to replay it, but you’ll be transformed in a way that can’t happen otherwise.

Categories: Uncategorized
  1. September 4, 2012 at 3:06 pm

    This is good. Really good. Also…..I wish I could join you at that coffee shop like I used to. Those were good times – I’m glad I didn’t record all of them. Besides, I probably would have spilled coffee on my recording device…

  1. No trackbacks yet.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: