Friday, December 6, 2013

Disciples or Drones?

Last week, CBS's 60 Minutes produced an intriguing piece on the future of the company Amazon by interviewing its founder Jeff Bezos:   Innovative technology stood at the forefront of the interview with one idea standing heads and shoulders above the rest:  Autonomous drones or octacopters (8 blades) with "amazon prime air" written on them that fly out of fulfillment or distribution centers that will fly to GPS locations (your home or your front porch) dropping off packages (up to 5 pounds) that you order in 30 minute delivery times.  The drones would operate within a 10 mile radius from their fulfillment centers. 

There are many parallels here that can be made to The Church.

The church has likewise been given a gospel message to deliver that is much weightier than 5 lbs.  The church is autonomous.  The church is like a distribution and a fulfillment center in that it distributes the good news or the gospel and provides people fulfillment found in Christ alone.  The church can use GPS to locate people within a 10 mile radius to share the gospel with.

However, there is one major difference between Amazon's new technology and The Church.  The Church will never have the luxury to rely solely on drones to deliver the good news.  That's because the gospel was never meant just to be handed out.  It was meant first and foremost to be lived out.  Robots can go but robots can never live.  Only casual Christianity would call for a robot to do what we were commanded to be.  We were never called to solely deliver good news.  We were called to be Disciple Makers.   If all we had to do was get the message out, using drones would be a great route to take.  But we have been called to so much more.

Another impressive technology (also on the video) found in Amazon is their Amazon Web Services (AWS).  To keep track of its massive online orders, Amazon created a large and sophisticated computing infrastructure called AWS.  Amzaon then found out it could expand the infrastructure for hundreds of thousands of companies (Netflix for one) and government agencies (the CIA, etc.) in what is known as "The Cloud."  Perhaps you have heard this expression in your company that some pertinent information was lost in the clouds (referring to internet space) and later you may get the good news that the information was found.    

I find "The Cloud" to be a fascinating concept.  Daniel went through his own cloud like experience (Read Daniel 10).  Sometimes our prayers are just floating up there and God's answer hasn't gotten to us yet. We can't see the heavenly realm but spiritual warfare is taking place.  The thing we must remember is God's answers to us are always in His time and they are always on time.   

Jeff Bezos also noted Amazon's big ideas to be customer centricity and invention which he said included going down the dark alley to see what's on the other side.  In contrast to Jeff's company, I believe some of the big ideas in God's Church leading to personal and corporate revival include Christocentric preaching (emphasis is on Christ compared to the consumer) and consistently incorporating the spiritual disciplines in our life (what we should heavily do when we find ourselves in those dark night of the soul moments) which lead us into approaching God and His holiness.

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