Technology vs Relationship

I have written before on how the church can take advantage of information technology.  Blogs, video streaming, social websites and podcasting are all ways the local church can reach a global audience.  At the same time, your members and community can stay better informed and connected.  Technology can be a powerful tool for sharing the Gospel, but as always there is a danger if used incorrectly.

Discipling: More Than a Podcast Preacher by Jonathan Dodson at 9Marks reminds us that discipleship is relational.  The relationship can be lost if replaced by technology.

The concept is nothing new, but a entire new generation could be subjected to it.  Back in the 80’s, an increasing number of television preachers took their sermons or entire services to the airwaves.  If you were shut in, lived in a nursing home, incarcerated or isolated by geography, the t.v. preacher could be a God send.  For others, watching a Sunday morning broadcast took the place of participating in a local church.  Maybe it was easier than getting up and dressed, or maybe it was about avoiding people, the collection plate, etc.  Weblogs and podcasts are excellent tools for sharing the Gospel, but discipleship is relational.  Jesus preached to multitudes, but he also discipled a group of 12, taught in people’s homes and touched the sick.  The church is a community of believers, and we must not forsake the assembling of ourselves together (Heb 12:25).

Instead of a Mother’s Day Sermon…

Last year I read a rant from a woman that refused to listen to one more preacher read Proverbs 31 and tell her how to be a godly woman.  Right or wrong, she made a couple of good points.  1) She has a good teaching pastor that opened the Bible each week, delivered a solid scripture-based sermon and shared the Gospel.  Mother’s Day each year turns into a one hour Hallmark card.  2) There are those in the church who may have lost a parent, or a child, or perhaps are disappointed they cannot become parents.  Honoring mothers can be especially painful for those that have tried and failed.  And we personally know what that’s like. So, here is the sermon I preached on Mother’s Day, May 9, 2010.

God is relational.  He seeks a relationship with his people, who in a general sense are all his children.  Let’s begin with the relationship of marriage. Continue reading