Meditations (Web)Church

A year (and a bit) in the life of NewSpring's first Web pastor

There is danger in confusing great work with a great witness

with 3 comments

Fundraising and social good using the social web is the hot, new thing.

And there’s something that does bother me about this.

In the age of the Internet, everyone “gets” that hundreds or thousands of small acts amount to a great work.

Mobilizing people used to be one of our distinctives, back when organizing and motivating large numbers of common people around a common aim used to be remarkable. (Not that we did it very well or made the most of it, mind you.)

Now everyone can “be the change.” Not just the church.

I’ve been wondering whether the opportunity to see the power of God’s people will get diminished now that everyone is part of a body, an open, movable, large-scale network, an organism rather than organization?

A temptation might be to mimic or out-do non-profits and charities and the various market-ainment vehicles, such asExtreme Makeover or Oprah’s Big Give and their online derivatives.

And then I realize that great work doesn’t necessarily produce great witness, even if a church or church folk are behind it.

A great witness is selfless and sacrificial and personal. Because selfless and sacrificial and personal doesn’t happen without the power of God.

It’s when we make much of God that great work happens, and it’s quite possible that it might look just like Extreme Makeover. But it’s not always when we do great work that making much of God happens.

As we step into the world of online-community building, I believe all of us in the techno-church are going to need to remember that.

How do you think we can keep it straight?


Written by NickCharalambous

January 7, 2009 at 2:13 pm

3 Responses

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  1. I believe that the Church is supposed to be counter-cultural. Now, I do not mean against the culture. What I do mean by this is that we should be subverting the culture at large. In this case I would suggest that we should be mobilizing people to do lots of small things with great love and extreme care. In an age where everyone is striving to get their “15 minutes” why not do small things with great love to communicate and help people to connect with Jesus?

    Chris S.

    January 7, 2009 at 2:50 pm

    • Totally with you … especially the extreme care part. I still think investing personally in something always stands out


      January 7, 2009 at 4:39 pm

  2. […] But I believe some of what I wrote may have been written with prophetic force that may remain useful to church leaders and pastors who are only now engaging in this […]

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