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The apostle Paul, larger than life on paper, and in the immaterial realm of idea and concept he is colossal. In real life he was an academic drop out, an itinerant tradesman, faithfully serving the Lord through missions. Every new town he went to started with a trip to the synagogue and to the marketplace to ensure that Jews and Gentiles alike had the chance to hear the gospel of Jesus.

I have sometimes wondered what missions would look life if Paul were to set out today. There are still synagogues, and in some places there is a physical marketplace. But for the most part those are not the center of culture, and going there would not be a sure fire way to reach everyone with the gospel. Where does everyone go every day, where the message of Jesus might be heard by a passerby?

My husband and I once had a rather lengthy debate about this very question a few years back. The conclusion we reached was that today’s marketplace equivalent is the internet. People go online every day so see and be seen, one can order everything needed from groceries to clothes, just like the ancient marketplace. Which is why we launched this website, to put our extra time and talents to work for the message of Jesus.

This idea of the internet being the marketplace of today is also why I think the tech team is vital in today’s Church. These men and women not only work to make Sunday morning go smoothly in our church buildings, but they also run livestreams, convert recordings to podcasts, or edit footage for YouTube. Getting the message of Jesus out in our iterations of the synagogues and marketplaces of the world.

God has used worship songs and sermons on YouTube and podcast powerfully in my life and my walk of faith. I literally would not be the person I am today without the work God did in me through the work of people I don’t even know. Just because they were willing to work as a team to develop a message and then to put it out into the greater marketplace of the internet for me to find in my living room in my little house in my small town.

There are a couple of churches I follow and listen to every week. Sometimes it takes all week for the new sermon to come out online, and I wonder if the tech person is having a hard week. I often find myself praying for this unknown person, doing unglamorous work. I wonder if they know how important their work really is. So I often pray for God to send them encouragement.

I love tech guys (side note: in the Midwest, where I’m from, “guys” is representative of both genders.) I love their faithfulness, and their role in spreading the good news of Jesus. Most churches have a small tech team, that is usually made up of volunteers, but they come every week and do their techy thing. I love it. They know what all the knobs on the soundboard do, they know how to work the projectors, where all the hidden mic jacks are on the stage. So many useful practical things that I find a complete mystery. Tech guys make it all work together to get the sermon out. It’s wonderful.

So let me just say thank you to the tech guys. You’re making the way straight for the gospel to reach the people. You’re saving lives for Jesus through the work you’re doing on your church computers. Thank you for running the slides for worship, and knowing how to time it just right. Thank you for checking the mics and sound mix extra early before everyone gets there. Thank you for running cameras, then editing the footage (sometimes even integrating the sermon slides into the video) so that it can be uploaded for others to see and hear. You guys are champs.

The world is so connected and global these days, it takes more than one guy standing on a stage talking. We still need that guy, but we need more than just that guy. We need the body of Christ working together with everyone’s strengths and gifts to create a movement within our time.

-Etta Woods

 

Photo credit: my friend, and tech guy, Andy Galicki

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