I was reading an article today about digital access and whether or not increased technology would make the world a better place. It seems like the computer has been around forever, but for most of us, the "modern day" computer and especially the internet has really only been around since the late 80's.
I remember my first computer, the Atari 800, came with a "basic" cartridge and a tape drive. Just enough for a 13-year old hacker to write a few programs. And then in my first few years of college, dialing in to the "bulletin boards" to play my favorite text game - that is if the line wasn't busy. Things have certainly changed in the past 15 years!
Did you know that as of 2004 only 12.4 percent of the world had access to a PC? AMD CEO Hector Ruiz recently unveiled the company's "50 x 15" program, which aims to put half of the world online by 2015 - quite an ambitious endeavor. Other companies are working on PIC's (personal internet communicators) that can be sold for as little as $100 to give access to as many people, especially students, as possible.
All of this made me think about the effort we're putting into technology. Do we even put a fraction of that effort into talking about God? What about the Bible? Do we have a goal to put the Bible into half of the world by 2015? Would they call us nuts? I can't help but to remember the words of Jesus when He commanded us to "go and tell." It seems we have chosen to stay and remain silent, hoping people will discover Him on their own.
The article finished with a bold statement that the countries with decent education systems, good infrastructure and free markets were the places that technology has taken off and as a result, it has helped those societies. That sounds pretty elitist now doesn't it? Does that sound familiar?
Remember the Pharisees who had the "infrastructure," the "education" and so much more? They held God so close and would not dare to share Him with anyone outside of their own. And then Jesus came along and said that His yoke was light; His yoke was easy. And most importantly, His yoke was free to everyone.
What happened to embracing that truth? Instead we act more like the Pharisees and hold God so close to us that no one can even catch a glimpse of Him. God is only for us and no one else. Share? Hardly. Control is the key. And besides, it's much safer, right? God in a box, an iPod if you will. We can listen when we want. We can download what we want. We can even put on our headphones so that no one else can hear.
I think it's time for the "music" of God to resonate with full volume. Technology was created not to bottle up the truth, but to help us communicate with the world. It's time to go and tell what others have been keeping to themselves for such a long time. If companies like AMD and Dell can bring technology to the world by 2015, surely we can share the simple truth of Jesus in a compelling way.
Technology may continue to rapidly change in the future, but one thing we can count on is the foundational, never-changing truth of Jesus. Let's get back to the "free market" system of religion - a relationship that is life-changing and free to anyone and everyone.