For the first time ever I turned off my computer and cell phone for a week and lived without technology and mobile communication last week. I didn’t call. I didn’t text message. I didn’t check my facebook. I didn’t send twitter updates. I’m smart enough to realize the world doesn’t need me to rotate on its axis, and Jesus is big enough to take care of things without me. Worship is all about becoming a living echo of Jesus. Jesus is the noise; we are the echo. We live in a world that is filled with noise. Noise is not just the music we’re playing. It’s not just the TV, or the cell phones, or the laptops. Noise, for all of us, is whatever is the loudest in our lives. My father suffered from an illness when I was child, which took a significant amount of hearing from his left ear. As a child I found it puzzling that he was constantly asking us to turn the TV down or up. If our music was loud in our bedrooms, he was always there asking us to turn it down. Poor guy, I thought he was just prudish. The problem for my father is that any background noise makes it harder to hear what he’s focusing in on. In social settings where there’s a lot of chatter all around, it’s very difficult for him to distinguish the words others are speaking to him. The background noise, or white noise, impedes his ability to focus and listen. A sound engineer visited our church’s main auditorium several months ago and noticed that we what is called “frequency cancelation”. This phenomenon happens when several speakers overlap. Consequently the frequencies actually cancel each other out. In our lives, I believe that white noise has the potential to make it harder to focus on Jesus and focus on Him. Like my father had lost his hearing to an illness, many of us have grown deaf to the noise of the Gospel through rebellious sinfulness. Sin is an illness that will kill you relationship with Jesus. It is best described as separation. Obviously, it’s more difficult to focus on a noise the farther you are from the source. For many of us, any white noise makes it next to impossible for us to focus our lives on Jesus. For some of us, other noise in our lives has crept to a volume that started canceling out the noise of the Gospel of Jesus. We need to recognize when the volume needs to be turned down on some things in our lives, and respond to Jesus appropriately. Worship will always be about Jesus. If Jesus is the loudest noise in our lives and we can dampen the amplitude of all the other white noise, then we can, collectively, be a louder, more distinct echo of Him. Last week some of that white noise faded into the background for me when I turned off all my communication devises. Cell phones, laptops, and iPods are not always the wrong noise, but they can make some white noise if you let them. Last week I spent time with my wife, laid out by a pool that over looked the Mexican ocean, but most importantly listened, with a little more clarity, to Jesus. It is after all, all about Jesus.
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