I love my iPhone. It helps me stay connected, listen to great content, and stay healthy. However, I have wasted a lot of time and energy the could have been put to better use. How can I keep my technology from controlling me?
Brian Moore, pastor of Crosspoint Church in Anaheim, California is a very gifted leader. He shared some insightful keys to keep technology in its proper place at the Winter meeting of the Baptist Bible Fellowship International at Hallmark Baptist Church in Fort Worth, Texas. Below are a few ideas he shared.
Technology has been called ‘a weapon of mass distraction.’ While it has many good aspects, not everything technology is good. Technology can enhance our ministry. However, the power of ministry is not in our technology. The power is in the Word of God.
How is technology affecting us? We are more connected and isolated than ever before. We tend to be too busy and too tired.
In Gen. 1:27-28 God gave man dominion over all creation. The divine hierarchy is God has dominion over Man. Man has dominion over creation. When this hierarchy gets flipped, problems happen. That’s what happened in Genesis 3. Man rebelled against God. Sin always results when we flipping of the hierarchy. Salvation puts the correct hierarchy back.
Any time you allow something to control you (addiction), you flip the hierarchy.
For example, in ministry we can make church growth or personal significance the goal. That is flipping the hierarchy. Healthy things grow naturally. Rather than manipulating growth, concentrate on health. Rather than ask how to grow, ask what is keeping our church from growing.
Another example of wrong hierarchy is fear. Fear allows things to control our emotions and prevents forward progress. Fear is False Evidence Appearing Real. Or Face Everything And Run.
Brian mentioned that at his church, their growth has followed a similar pattern. Change – Resistance – Growth. Any kind of growth demands change. You can’t see anything difference unless you do something different. However, when change is introduced there is always resistance. As the church perseveres through resistance, growth occurs. Your church will only grow to the degree of your tolerance of the pain of change.
One of the first examples of the use of technology in the Bible was early. In Genesis 10:8-10 and 11:1-4 we find the story of the building of Babylon. Brick was introduced as a construction component. Rather than stone, bricks allow taller buildings. The brick was the advanced technology of their day. It was the iPhone of the time. Brick would let them build a city. But their motive was to “make a name for themselves”. The problem wasn’t the brick but their selfish motives.
Technology is great if our motives are the glory of God. But if our motives are to make a name for ourselves, technology will only move us to failure, emptiness, and loss faster. Yet, even when we have lost it all, God will be there to help. When you come to the place where God is all you have, you will realize God is all you need.
Brian ended his talk with the Total Surrender Contract (original idea from his coach, Regi Campbell). I found the contract online and wanted to include it here. Brian shared that he uses this as one of his daily prayers. I think this will become part of my Morning Ritual.
Total Surrender Contract
Dear Lord, I give myself to You without reservation, and surrender to You my will, my mind, my emotions, my body, my plans, my hopes and my dreams. I give You my home, my marriage, my spouse, my children, my geographical location, my recreation, my entertainment, my career. I commit into Your hands my successes, my failures, my habits, my finances, my problems, my time, my integrity, my character, my attitude, my business conduct and relationships, my Christian walk and my response to authority.
I am relinquishing the following rights to You . . .
My right to . . .
- my possessions
- my reputation
- acceptance from others
- be successful
- have pleasant circumstances
- presume upon what your will may be for me
- beauty or strength
- have friendships
- be heard
- take up offense
- avoid reaping from what I have sown
- handle or control my addictions
- be right
- see results
- be loved by others
- change others
- life itself
Lord, I give You permission to do anything You wish with me, to me, in me or through me. I claimed the above once as mine. Now I acknowledge that they all belong to You and are under Your control. You can do with them as You please. I willingly make this commitment in the name and authority of the Lord Jesus Christ, and I recognize that this is an agreement with You that can never be broken. Now that I have surrendered ownership of my life to You, I understand that You will never give ownership back to me. I accept that I am “not my own . . . that I am the temple of the Holy Spirit . . . and that I have been bought with a price.” (1 Corinthians 6:19-20). Amen.