Thursday, November 26, 2009

Thankful for Spirit FM 90.5 - plus thoughts on Media saturation

There's a lot to be thankful for Today; family most of all. But I'll save most of that for tomorrow because Friday's always Thanksgiving at Maul Hall.

But I am most thankful that yesterday's radio interview seemed to come off fairly well. I didn't embarrass myself and I don't think I stumbled too badly over any of my ideas. Thinking on my feet is not exactly the same as composing and carefully re-writing a few sentences for the newspaper. But I must admit the immediacy is exhilarating.

I am fairly technologically savvy - at least for a man in the throws of "middle-age" - whatever that is! However, try as I might, I can't find any way to post an audio file to this blog. So, if you want to hear the interview (two 3-4 minute segments) then send me an email and I'll get it to you that way.

Not long after it aired, by the end of the evening, a local AM Christian station got in touch with me to ask if I'd be a talk-show guest Dec 9th, so I must have said at least a couple of things worth repeating!

My mother was funny. She called to say she really enjoyed listening to me talk on the radio - but "it was a pity people had to listen to that terrible music in between!" My guess - and I'm no professional critic - is that most listeners tune in to Christian music stations for the afternoon drive-time music selection. It's a safe bet to assume the average driver stuck in traffic was more than ready for me to shut up so they could get back to the tunes.

But the experience did make me think about the vast wave of media that floods over most of us every day. Television, radio, computers, gaming, smart-phones, billboards, newsprint, ads, magazines, books, commercial messages from every which way, DVD, CD, iPod...

"But the worries of this life, the deceitfulness of wealth and the desires for other things come in and choke the word, making it unfruitful." (Mark 4:19)

I'm thankful that ministries such as Spirit/FM do such an important job of adding balance to the mix, streaming cutting edge Jesus-based music, and presenting the Gospel in the marketplace of contemporary values. (Image to right: "Neiman Marcus 2009 Christmas Catalog toned down in view of economic climate.")

But still, most of the messages we download into our collective subconscious are packed full with testimony, spin, and persuasive argument designed to push the agenda of a consumption-centric culture bent on the enslavement (or at least allegiance) of every person in the world.

Think about it. Our entire way of life revolves around the principle that ownership, acquisition, and consumption are the primary values, and that they must demand pretty much all that we are and all that we aspire to.

This is the thrust of so-called civilized society. It's the key message that runs through most of that tidal wave of media we bath in daily.

So I got a few words in. I'm pleased.

I'm thinking out loud here. I'm "in" this world - but am I also "of" this world? Probably to a much deeper extent than I'd like to own. We're called to be radically counter-cultural and to live out lives anchored in the perfect life of Jesus.

So I guess I got a few words in - and they were directed at myself. I sure hope so.
  • Even though I am free of the demands and expectations of everyone, I have voluntarily become a servant to any and all in order to reach a wide range of people: religious, nonreligious, meticulous moralists, loose-living immoralists, the defeated, the demoralized—whoever. I didn't take on their way of life. I kept my bearings in Christ—but I entered their world and tried to experience things from their point of view. I've become just about every sort of servant there is in my attempts to lead those I meet into a God-saved life. I did all this because of the Message. I didn't just want to talk about it; I wanted to be in on it! - Corinthians 9:19-23 (The Message)

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