I’ve heard Tim talk a few times before on two different podcasts and seen clips of his teaching online. But I enjoyed his teaching today. He used TONS of clips. Some from media. Some from examples of dramas, clips, and promos that GCC has used. He did a great job at communicating that we leverage the media and culture around us to communicate life changing truths of Jesus Christ. And as a result, those people can in turn love God by serving Him and the community around us.
Here are my notes, but they are a little more scattered.
Tim Stevens :: Pop Goes The Church.
I lead a really sheltered life early on in relation to pop culture. Grew up with the idea that going to a movie was a sin. First movie I went to was at age 26.
But he ended up experiencing God moving throuht some pop culture.
Eyes Wide Open
WHY LEVERAGE THE CULTURE
Clip(s) from Desperate Housewives
There are people all across our communities who are on a journey. They’re exploring God. But they’re not using the church.
Reality #1. Most churches aren’t impacting their communities. Most churches are not getting the job done.
Reality #2 – Spiritual interest in increasing in America.
UnChristian – Gabe Lyons.
Church :: UnChuched :: DeChurched. Everyone falls into one of these 3 groups. And the church isn’t doing well with the 2nd two groups. And they drive by our churches each day w/o much thought.
As church attendance is going down in our culture, spiritual interest is growing.
People don’t see the church as able to meet their needs.
Christ ‘became flesh and blood, and moved into the neighborhood’ John 1:14 [msg]
Acts 17 Paul preached and got run out of town. Then he goes to Athens.
Paul saw that they were searching for answers, but looking in the wrong place.
Sometimes in churches we don’t ask questions.
FOUR WAYS TO LEVERAGE CULTURE FOR THE GOSPEL
Use pop culture to package a topic or series. We made an intentional decision a while back to limit series that are using pop culture to package it. Because there are still so many that are not into it.
Use it to get people thinking or laughing. Usually people are defensive or skeptical. Sometimes it can loosen them up a little to where they’re more likely to receive the msg.
Provide a new interpretation for a popular cultural element. Some people outside of GCC really reacted negatively to the Beatles Christmas series because of some of the quotes/stances/beliefs of the Beatles. But GCC provided a new interpretation on some of the songs.
To encourage those who serve.
The question all of this begs is WHY? Why the research and time and $$ spent to research, prepare, and present w/ Pop culture in mind? why drive so close to the line? wouldn’t just preaching a msg be easier. Isn’t there enough of God in the Bible w/o using culture? What’s so wrong w/ that?
Or do we just want to be labeled as hip and cool?
…the man who is losing his family can keep his job
…the single mom can
…so the elderly woman who’s husband has died can find a reason to live and find purpose in serving others
…so that the sexually abused teen can be surrounded by men of God can help him
so the couple that is struggling in their marriage
so the woman who has never experienced intimacy out side of a 1 night stand
so the mane who has been steeped in legalism
the woman who has been to mass every day of her life can see that it’s so much more than duty
So that all these people can experience God and grow closer to HIm and begin to grow in their relationship w/ him and then begin to serve more pray more and value others more and give more.
In the church, but also in their work/schools/streets/prisons/communities