I have been working in production and serving in the local church for most of my life…like 3/4 of it. Whether it has been as a volunteer or a staff member, I have spent quite a bit of time in church.
Last week, Pastor Eugene Cho came to speak to the Willow Creek staff. He talked about a few things, like the fact that his youngest son’s name is Jedi! As a Star Wars fan, you have my attention! One thing he said, in particular, hit me pretty hard. He read from Luke 7 where Jesus is having dinner at a Pharisee’s house. While he is there, a sinful woman comes in and anoints Jesus’ feet.
It is a story that we have all heard before, but Eugene pointed out that this house is full of a bunch of religious leaders, who are watching and listening to Jesus from a clinical, almost academic perspective. Here’s a group of people whose full-time job is God. Understanding the law, following the law, making sure other people are obeying the law.
They aren’t engaging with what Jesus is trying to teach them, they are just pulling apart the details.
As technical artists in the local church, I think it is really easy to fall into this way of encountering Jesus. We are in the room, but we are only aware of the things that we care about. Are the graphics working? What is the mic placement like? Do we have the CCLI number for the song at the end of the service? I’ve talked about this before, but the gifts that we have been entrusted with, helping create environments for people to experience God, can put us in a place where we only experience Jesus through the lens of production and not as simply a Christ-follower.
If I were honest, sometimes I check the box of “going to church and getting fed” just because I am at work.
If I were still honest, I am not really going to church and I’m not getting fed while I am at work.
If I were honest one more time, I would admit that I can go for long periods of time not developing spiritually.
As a group of people who spend a lot of time in church but aren’t really “at” church, we need to be more intentional to be around Jesus in other ways. We need to look for opportunities to experience God in less clinical, less academic, less work-related ways.
What is one thing you could do to make Jesus more than just a job to you?
Todd is a writer, speaker, technical artist in the local church and founder of FILO.